By Brendan Shea, Wood’s Homes Team Leader (Altadore Program)
Last month, I got to chat with a client currently in Wood’s Homes Altadore program. Check out the below Q&A to hear what they had to say about their time with Wood’s Homes!
How long have you lived at Wood’s Homes?
I have been here since I was 6, so about 12 years. I first came to the Exceptional Needs U12 program and then went to live in many different foster homes. Over the years, I’ve also stayed in the Stabilization program, in Wood’s Homes program in Strathmore and I’ve been in the Altadore program for almost 3 years.
What are some of your fondest memories at Wood’s Homes?
I don’t know which one to pick. One thing that I am doing right now which I think is cool, is I am getting ready to move out to the 14th Street program. I’m working on how to budget for groceries. I get $125 every 2 weeks, so I plan a menu with the staff, make a list and then shop with that budget. This has helped me get ready for moving out and buying food on my own.
I have a few great memories of our trips to Edmonton over the years, going to the mall and waterpark.
How did the Altadore program help you?
It is a good program with really helpful staff who teach me things that I will need to know when I become an adult – like cooking, budgeting my money, staying clean and healthy. They also help me express myself better and teach me about relationships.
What are your aspirations once you have completed treatment at Altadore?
I want to upgrade my high school courses and get my diploma. Down the road, I want to get a degree in criminal justice. I have always been interested in the military and hopefully one day I will become a military strategist or officer.
What is something you will pass on to future clients of the Altadore Program?
When you are angry or frustrated, do not break things. Instead, go for a walk. Follow your dreams and do not let anyone tell you otherwise. Rules are here to keep the program running smoothly; follow the rules and do not argue with staff.
Ask for help. Don’t be afraid to reach out to your friends, family and community – let’s work together!