For people with autism, it is essential to provide life skills training in the home, school, and community. Regardless of age, children and adults benefit greatly from learning skills that teach independence in phases as early as possible. While there are many programs and schools that help focus on these skills, there are also in-home services that can make a big difference.
Being independent is about having the skills and confidence to transition from childhood to adulthood. Learning these skills at an early age ensures that those with autism can grow into their skills over time.
What Are Life Skills?
Life skills, often referred to as activities for daily living (ADLs), include everyday routines that are commonly done without assistance. Autism offers a wide range of conditions that affect social skills, speech, behavior, non-verbal communication, and self-care. Life skills training offers knowledge and resources that accommodate these needs at their pace and in their environment.
Health and safety
Career path and employment
Peer relationships, socialization and social communication
Community participation and personal finance
Home living skills
How Life Skills Training Works?
Each person with autism has their own needs, skills, lifestyle, and preferences. Some people on the spectrum require 24/7 support while others can live on their own with relatively minimal support. In-home caregivers work with individuals to teach at their pace, adapting each training session to meet the style and personality of their clients. Often times, these programs begin with a simple assessment of skills and goals, followed by a plan and schedule that works for everyone involved. Whether you have a toddler or your aiming to improve the life of a young adult, these caregivers have the skills to help improve success and happiness overall.
Examples of Skills Training
While we mentioned each relationship between caregiver and client is different, there are some common examples of life skills training that apply to most cases. Here are :
Communication Skills: Techniques focused on emotional expression and reading others
Self-Care: Teaching bathing, hygiene, grooming, and dressing
Boundaries and Personal Skills: Learning to communicate discomfort and needs to others
Household Management: Teaching cleaning, maintenance, and budgeting
Finances and Career Planning: Learning money management and job searches
Safety: Skills to use public transportation and recognize signs of danger (like a fires or storms)
Leisure and Hobbies: Taking the opportunity to explore interests, hobbies, and relaxation
If you have autism or know someone that would benefit from these services, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have. Our staff is friendly with flexible schedules, ready to work with your needs and schedule! Contact us anytime!
Source: Autism Speaks