Shine a Light on the Cherokee Day Training Center!
Providing music therapy services at The Cherokee Day Training Center has been both a phenomenal and eye-opening experience for me in my first few months as a licensed and board-certified music therapist. We often hear about therapy and other services provided for children with developmental disabilities, but what services are there for those children when they become adults?
The Cherokee Day Training Center, located in Cherokee County, Georgia, has been providing services to individuals with developmental disabilities since 1969. It is a non-profit, Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) accredited organization whose mission is “to enhance the quality of life to each consumer by providing those employment and training supports necessary for achieving increased independence, personal development, and health.”(You can read more about the CARF accreditation here). Aside from offering opportunities for training and employment, The Cherokee Day Training Center offers services that support daily and community living skills, lifelong learning, social skills, education on health, safety, self protection, and advocacy to the individuals they serve in an effort to assist the individual in enhancing their quality of life. These services are offered through both individualized and community-based activities and opportunities that are adapted to meet each individuals needs and preferences. Individuals in Cherokee County who are 22 years of age or older, and have a diagnosis of developmental disability, cerebral palsy, autism, or other diagnoses which have been deemed appropriate by the DBHDD Region 1 intake and evaluation offices to receive theses services are eligible for inclusion in the center’s programming.
As I have offered music therapy services at the Cherokee Day Training Center over the last few months, I have been given the opportunity to see just how effective a tool music can be in the lives of adults with developmental disabilities. While we do have so much fun during every session, I have seen so many of the individuals who are partaking in our music therapy group grow tremendously in areas such as social skills, motor coordination, attention-focus, and their ability to express themselves through musical interactions. Even when it is as simple as learning to greet group members with a “hello” or a hand-shake, being given the opportunity to witness these individuals continue to explore and learn about the world around them, even in adulthood, has been a wonderful experience.
Do you know any adults who have been diagnosed with a developmental disability in Cherokee County who may benefit from the aforementioned services provided at The Cherokee Day Training Center? Check out their website for contact information and more on services and opportunities provided for individuals at the center.