Loving, curious and fun, Amergin is blind and was diagnosed with autism. He is also nonverbal and active…very active.
At 5 years old, he was filled with energy, but without sight, Amergin struggled to make sense of the world around him. And without a voice, he couldn’t express his needs or discontentment.
He communicated his frustration through episodes of negative behavior that lasted up to half an hour, and included screaming, throwing or biting. With a young daughter in their home, Amergin’s father, Rick, was desperate for help. He searched the country for the best program—at Wayfinder.
Rick moved his family from Washington state to California to enroll Amergin in Wayfinder’s special education school, which has dedicated teachers experienced in working with children with multiple disabilities. Focusing on his strengths, the teachers have helped Amergin overcome some of his greatest challenges.
After three years, Rick was at a crossroads. As with all of our residents’ parents, he faced the daunting struggles of raising a child with multiple disabilities. Rick recognized that Amergin would be much safer, freer and happier in a group home. Amergin moved into one of our children’s group homes.
“I was conflicted with the idea that my son would be in a group home, but I trusted Wayfinder’s quality of services,” says Rick. “The staff are warm and truly care about the kids. The house is spotless. There are round-the-clock nursing services available. And, the kids are free to move about the house without worrying that they’re going to break something or hurt themselves.”
Since moving in, Amergin has come further out of his shell. When his father and sister visit, he’s eager to show them his favorite things to do.
“Wayfinder means everything to me and my family,” Rick says, gratefully. “My son’s future, my daughter’s future and my future are brighter because Wayfinder is there.”
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December 27, 2017