Transitional Living Program
Since the mid-1970s, AVATIL offers a residential program that provides residents with a transition to independent living. The program consists of three transitional living apartments located at The Fay and John Bland residence, above the AVATIL offices in Lachine. A fourth apartment houses a tenant who provides minimal support if needed.
The residential program aims to help residents acquire the skills for independent living as well as to promote their personal and social development so that they can become participating citizens in the community. The concepts of mutuality, community, and support networks are integral to the aims of the program. The program embraces an experiential model of learning.
The three transitional apartments have a total capacity of six residents (two residents in each of three apartments). The length of stay is two years but may vary. Residents, with the support of staff members, are responsible for paying rent, utilities, and groceries, as well as a monthly residential fee.
Program Description: A supper program is held Mondays-Thursdays, where residents, accompanied by AVATIL staff members, develop their cooking skills. On Saturday mornings, residents participate in apartment cleaning and organization, groceries, as well as a residential meeting, where they can discuss any issues that arise. A number of social activities are organized with residents. Family members are invited to participate in special events.
Each resident also has an individual AVATIL counselor, who provides assistance with practical skills such as budgeting, as well as support around personal issues.
Kiwanis House, located in Lachine, has as its mandate to offer a further transition to independent living for graduates of the Fay and John Bland residence that need an additional period of time (1- 3 years) before living on their own. It also provides individuals who experience difficulties living on their own and who receive community support services from AVATIL with a respite period before they return to the community.
The majority of residents who live at the co-op have previously lived on their own, with the support of AVATIL. The co-op, located in NDG, enables residents to maintain their skills while benefiting from low-cost housing in a supportive living environment. One of its main goals is to promote a supportive community through the ongoing development of common interests, goals, and decision-making. Length of stay may vary from medium to longer-term, but the co-op does not offer permanent housing.