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Independent Living program

The Independent Living Program provides a supervised, independent living environment that allows youth to obtain the skills necessary as a contributing member of the community. This program serves youth between the ages of 18 and 24, and participants are youth who are preparing for emancipation from the child welfare system through the Illinois Department of Children & Family Services. 

Independent Living Program clients are independent and capable of living on their own in an apartment located in the community. While they are responsible for themselves in all areas of life, they receive support, guidance, and direction from Bethany's case management staff as needed or requested.  Since all youth are living in their own apartments, natural consequences (i.e, community laws) are applicable. Because of this, there is a Bethany for Children & Families staff member on call 24 hours a day if the youth is in need of assistance.

It is important for clients to understand what the Independent Living Program tries to accomplish in order to help them achieve full independence. The following is a brief list of indicators that are employed to determine a youth’s success in achieving this independence:

A Client of Independent Living Opportunities
  • The youth is attending college/trade school and working part-time, or is employed on a full-time basis.

  • The youth is financially stable and is able to meet all financial obligations, with at least $1,000 in a savings/checking account.

  • The youth is knowledgeable of community resources and is comfortable scheduling their own appointments.

  • The youth arranges their own transportation, either by owning a car, using public transportation, or by receiving assistance from their social network.

  • The youth has a strong support network outside of Bethany for Children & Families.

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