Flemington Day Habilitation aims to forge bonds of community

Flemington Day Habilitation leadership works to provide ample opportunities for attendees to volunteer and grow their circle while striving for community integration.

Flemington Day Habilitation sits in historic Flemington. The building is unassuming at first glance. Inside, though, Joe Gleason, director of vocational services for the northern portion of the state, and his staff are constantly looking for new ways to engage participants in the community while supporting them in philanthropic efforts.

“Our group is very vocal and interactive,” Gleason said. The day habilitation program in Flemington is made up of fewer participants than other day habilitation programs run by Allies. Because of the size of the group, it is easy to split attendees into different activities based on their individual interests.

A typical day in Flemington will include groups going to different parts of town, like the library or grocery store, at different times. This affords attendees the opportunity to socialize with many different members of the community. Regular activities at Flemington include participating with local food banks and Meals on Wheels.

“We are educating our participants about what they are doing when they get involved with volunteer efforts,” Gleason said. “We strive to support  our participants in their efforts to positively impact the local community.”

For Gleason, making sure attendees have the opportunity to give back to their communities is a huge priority. More than just giving back, though, volunteers and those who choose to get involved in the greater community have the opportunity to expand their social circles.

“Our folks understand that a lot of what we do here is connected,” Gleason said.

Beyond volunteering and regular trips into historic Flemington, the day habilitation program has several organizations that come into the program to engage with attendees. Project Grow, and MaryAnne McMillan, are regular guests at Flemington. In addition to Project Grow, there is a yellow lab service dog that visits several times every month to provide service visits.

“Attendees enjoy the planting and digging, but I really enjoy the lessons they learn,” Gleason said.