An organization supporting individuals with acquired brain injury is in the process of developing a group home in Kanata south.
Pathways to Independence is fundraising to build a home for people who need guidance and care after suffering significant brain trauma.
“Some people who have suffered and acquired brain injuries lose living skills,” said Sandy Jenkyns, manager of support services for the Ottawa-area Pathways to Independence. “I would like people to understand that the folks that we support were active, employed, family-oriented, people who are very active in their communities. They were you and I until they had their acquired brain injury from whatever cause.”
Acquired brain injuries can result from a range of reasons, including brain aneurisms, lack of oxygen due to a medical situation such as a heart attack and strokes, and vehicle accidents.
The not-for-profit is looking to raise around $250,000 to help build an eight-bedroom house for people who can no longer care for themselves.
The organization held the ninth annual Pathways Golf Classic on Sept. 15 to help raise money and will be holding other fundraisers in the future, said Jenkyns.
The house will be built on a vacant lot on Bachman Terrace in Katimavik, said Jenkyns, adding she’s met the neighbours in the area and has their support.
“They were very positive. A couple of them have offered to be volunteers down the road,” she said. “I’ve found them to be remarkable people; we’ve had great reception.”
No design plans have been made to date, but Jenkyns said the organization hopes to have them finalized by the end of the month.
She said they are moving residents out of the current group home in Osgoode to the one that will be built in Kanata. The current home is an older, multi-level residence that doesn’t suit the needs of those living there, she said.
“We want to relocate the people into the community where there's lots to do and they're closer to their family members,” said Jenkyns. “A huge part of our philosophy is to give people the opportunity to be in the community of their own choice and to be involved in activities of their own choice.
“We’re really committed to a home atmosphere.”
Six residents live in the current home but Jenkyns said she’s hoping to add two more people in the new house.
“The Ministry of Health tends to place people in long-term care facilities regardless of their age. Our philosophy, if we had unlimited funds, would be to create a home for these people, similar to what they had built before,” she said. “Our hope is always we’ll help people maximize their independence.”
Pathways to Independence also offers residential options to people with developmental disabilities. The not-for-profit supports independent living, an outreach service for people with acquired brain injury and a day program.