Feed The Need

A prevocational training program for teens and young adults ages 14 and up on the autism spectrum and similar needs.

Autism School

What is "Feed the Need"?

Feed the Need is a prevocational training program for teens and young adults (ages 14 and up) on the autism spectrum and similar behavioral needs. Currently, this program does not require a formal diagnosis. At Feed the Need, participants have the opportunity to work on prevocational, social and daily living skills as well as community networking.

As a provider for youth and young adults with Medicaid B or the Innovations waiver, our goal is to carry out the client’s Person Centered Plan through Community Networking, Community Living and Supports as well as Long Term Community Supports through several different avenues explained below.

Community Living and Supports

This is a service that enables an Innovations Waiver beneficiary to learn new skills, practice and/or improve existing skills that will be individualized to increase or maintain their independence and collaboration within the community. Areas of skill acquisition are: interpersonal, independent living, community living, self- care, and self-determination.

Our staff will assist and educate participants thought the following activities:

  • Garden class (prevocational and social skills) *Description listed below
  • Art class (prevocational and social skills) *Description listed below
  • Cooking classes both basic and advanced *Description listed below
  • Art activities with the Art Council
  • Working out.
  • Visiting the local library.
  • Volunteer with Salvation Army
  • Local agribusiness collaboration
  • Collaborate with youth groups from local churches
  • Volunteer at IAM
  • Volunteer at meals on wheels and local food banks
  • Learning to use apple country transit
  • Health and wellness classes
  • Money management and budgeting

Community Networking

This service is designed to provide an Innovations Waiver beneficiary the opportunity to develop meaningful community relationships with non disabled individuals. Our staff will assist participants by promoting maximum participation in community life while developing natural supports within integrated settings.

Community Networking Consists of:

  • Local agribusiness collaboration
  • Volunteer at IAM
  • Volunteer at meals on wheels
  • Community based classes for the development of hobbies.
  • Leisure /cultural interests such as art classes in the community
  • Collaborate with youth groups from local churches
  • Volunteer with local food banks
  • Selling/donating items made from Art/Cooking/Garden in the community
  • Classes at BRCC
  • Volunteer with Salvation Army
  • Learning to use apple country transit

Long Term Community Supports

Individuals with Medicaid B will be supported while developing relationships with others and maintaining independence in the community and in their daily lives.

LTCS includes but is not limited to:

  • Collaborate with youth groups from local churches
  • Volunteer at IAM
  • Volunteer at meals on wheels
  • Art activities with the Art Council
  • Local garden collaboration
  • Volunteer with local food banks
  • Volunteer with Salvation Army
  • Learning to use apple country transit
  • Money management and budgeting

St. Gerard House- Feed the Need Community Living and Support Classes

  • In our Garden Program participants learn the ins and outs of growing produce sustainably and organically, while also learning social skills. This is a great program for someone who is just starting out on their journey to employment, as the garden offers a wide range of general work skill building across the board.
  • Our Culinary Program helps familiarize participants with all aspects of cooking in a commercial kitchen setting. Experienced culinary instructors work alongside St. Gerard House staff to ensure every participant is learning at their own pace and making progress. During the session, each participant learns how to cook and eat new meals while learning a myriad of jobs from being a hostess to being a cook.
  • The Art Program at St. Gerard House is designed to teach participants how to express their feelings and communicate through a variety of artistic media and formats. Professional artists from the community teach each ten-week session and share their personal passions and gifts with our participants. During the class, we also focus on teaching vocational skills from production to marketing and work together to host an art show at the end of each session.

What is the Innovation’s Waiver?

The Innovations Waiver for Persons with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) is a special Medicaid community care funding source. The Innovations Waiver combines federal and state funds to provide a cost-effective alternative to care in an intermediate care facility. The goal of the Innovations Waiver is to allow individuals to live in the community with as much independence as possible. Available throughout North Carolina, Innovations Waiver can provide one-on-one services and supports for each participant, based on the individual’s assessed needs.

These services and supports include well-trained, screened staff (habilitation technicians) working with participants in their homes and out in the community. Habilitation technicians assist participants with such objectives as gross/fine motor skills, behavior, socialization skills, self-help skills, play skills, language and communication and academics. Also covered, as needed, are respite, family training, supported employment, fences and alarm systems (for individuals at risk for wandering), and ramps and other home and vehicle modifications.

For more information about the North Carolina Innovations Waiver, visit www.dhhs.state.nc.us/mhddsas or call your county’s mental health/developmental disabilities/substance abuse office. If you live in North Carolina, you may also contact us at 1-800-760- 0665 and we will help you find the appropriate person for you to talk to in your county.

Contact Information

New Family Interest Form

Please complete the following form if you are interested in learning more about our services

Download the Program Application

For more information or to enroll, contact Julia Matthews at julia@stgerardhouse.org or 828-693-4223 x 1009.

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