By Julianne Torrence, Connecticut Junior Republic
When we first met Juan, he was living in and thriving at NAFI Connecticut’s Dover Road therapeutic group home. NAFI had fully embraced the Risking Connections model, and Dover Road and Juan were living proof. Through their hard work, Jose had made friends, had healthy relationships with staff, was engaged in school, and was working on his relationships with his family. For probably the first time in his life, he belonged.
But systems are systems. Despite all of his progress and his potential, Juan was forced to move – he was too old for Dover Road. He was moving to our group home — Connecticut Junior Republic’s Winchester House.
Juan was now facing an important life lesson, several in fact – things change, life is filled with hellos and goodbyes, and relationships evolve whether we want them to or not. And Juan did not want these changes or life lessons.
How could we help Juan with this transition — honoring all that was accomplished at Dover Road and look toward the future?