Tuesday, September 20, 2011

What we believe ....

Latitude Artist Community’s belief is that the defining mark of a human being, that phenomenon which provides both purpose and pleasure- is initiated in our inherent human prerequisite to contribute to our entire community in a meaningful fashion. We believe that all people have this aspiration and thus Latitude’s mission, indeed our passion is to create vigorous and innovative supports from which those of us who have traditionally been denied this civic opportunity/responsibility have such opportunities to enrich our entire community through their own inspired efforts.    

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Introducing LifeLab... Latitude's Community Access Program

What does LifeLab do?
LifeLab matches an adult mentor with a person living with disabilities to create a mentoring partnership. Our LifeLab Mentors provide a wide variety of community supports which enable people to experience life as independently as possible. LifeLab believes in the importance of contributing to our community through service, advocacy and by fully appreciating the rich public resources our community is endowed with.

LifeLab Mentors work with participants to accomplish goals for community involvement and to develop strategies for giving back to our community.  

Promoting healthy lifestyle choices, a belief in the power and necessity of educational and cultural opportunities and advocating for our own essential rights, result in an individual who is fully regarded as a contributing member of our society. 

In these ways we gain increasing measures of independence.....

What is a LifeLab Mentor?

What is a LifeLab Mentor?
As a LifeLab mentor you will work one-on-one  with a person to provide the supports necessary to meet specific needs and accomplish individualized goals. A LifeLab mentor must be able to provide these supports with the utmost dignity and respect, no matter the task, at all times and must be able to ensure the safety, privacy, and confidence of each person/family. Most importantly, a LifeLab mentor must have the ability and talents to create innovative supports while providing motivation, guidance, and opportunity in all endeavors. LifeLab mentors will be expected to advocate, explore, and remain kind and optimistic throughout considerable challenges.

LifeLab participants are people who experience disabilities in a variety of ways (emotional, physical, cognitive, behavioral) and seek a mentor to provide support and knowledge as they develop an active life in our community. As a LifeLab mentor you will share your experience, knowledge, talents, interests, and abilities with the person you support.

Realistically, what are supports?
Providing good supports means you are able to accept a person for who they are and be willing to walk with them as they share their life story. Supports are always happening anytime a mentor and person are spending time together at home or in community spaces. In your time together you are helping someone take care of himself by assisting with basic needs, introducing her to new people and places, modeling positive behaviors, teaching important life skills, and giving assistance wherever it is needed. Supports are flexible and do change over time…as they should!

Are you a Creative Thinker? Are you involved in your community? Are you an Advocate?
Being knowledgeable about what your community has to offer is an essential skill, and advocating for change in your community is even more valued. Most communities have a variety of resources at your disposal, such as parks, libraries, museums, theaters, galleries, farms, hiking trails, walking paths, urban and rural settings, restaurants, gyms, pools, performance events, farmer’s markets, holiday festivities, book clubs, computer courses. It is our goal to bring all the resources our community offers into the lives of those we serve.

A Mentor Must be Able to:

*Practice confidentiality and keep boundaries between personal and work-life (eg. Facebook/Twitter are personal forums).

* Be dependable, punctual, prepared, and safe. *Mentoring happens any and everywhere: your “office” and workspace is in the community.   

*Be able to respectfully interact with family members/guardians, other service providers, professionals and individuals in a participants daily life.

*Be available to meet with LifeLab supervisors and attend mentor functions at times other than shift.

*Be able to read files, complete daily/monthly narratives, and time sheets and deliver on time.

*Be available to attend occasional meetings with the expectation of verbally conveying interactions, progress, and needs in a professional manner. 

*Be able to transport a person in a safe and reliable automobile and keep necessary paperwork on hand.

*Be comfortable with the language of LifeLab and representing Latitude and Latitude’s philosophy as a whole.
Basic Information and Requirements:

**Mentor positions are part time, contracted employment

(you are responsible for filing your own taxes).

**TB skin test (before starting & each year thereafter) , **CPR/FirstAID (before starting & each year  thereafter), **Driver’s License, Auto insurance (before starting & each year thereafter)

**Background checks (before starting & each year thereafter)