Students with disabilities need your help to learn, grow, and thrive!

Katie is finding her voice and fit at Little City!

Katie came to Little City in May of 2023 after aging out of her previous program when she turned 22.  

The transition from children to adult day programming can be overwhelming and intimidating for people with autism and other disabilities, especially when it means going to a new place with all new people. That was the case for Katie.   

“When I first met Katie she was one of the most shy people I had worked with,” said Judy Martinez, Katie’s case worker. “She would whisper so softly you couldn’t understand her. And because she felt she wasn’t being heard, she would run out of rooms and hide and get upset.”  

But where she felt overwhelmed in her early days at the Countryside Center, she was finding friendship, her voice – and a fit – at the Euclid Home. Katie moved into one of Little City’s Community Integrated Living Arrangements (CILA) where she became quick friends with the women who were closer in age and active in many Little City programs. Katie and her housemates quickly bonded, in part through using one of Little City’s lesser-known programs that has the mental health coordinator lead weekly group talks in the home.   

Judy said Katie’s comfort at home – especially with her friend Ola – helped her warmup quickly at the Countryside Center and she started making major strides. Today, Katie not only is comfortable around others and participating in events, but she is also actively advocating for herself and speaking up about the activities and interests she wants to pursue.  

Judy said they are already developing a two-year plan that would have Katie working through the Employee Development Services program to prepare her for community-based employment one day.  

For individuals like Katie, an autism diagnosis can challenge and limit their way of life, but because of your support Katie is thriving and working her way towards great achievement – helping her and so many others to unlock their full potential and find a fit for a lifetime!