FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Berkshire County Arc
395 South Street
Pittsfield, MA 01201
$1M in Grants Awarded to Berkshire County Arc
PITTSFIELD, Mass. (June 26, 2018) –Berkshire County Arc has received over $1,000,000 in grants to support its residential programs serving individuals with Acquired Brain Injury. These grants supported the construction of two residential homes. These are the 10th and 11th Brain Injury homes at BCArc, serving individuals that were formally in nursing homes bring the total number of residential homes to 39. One home is located in Dalton and the other in Southampton.
Patricia Butler has benefited from the Acquired Brain Injury Waiver Program Funding; $800,000 was received through MassHousing funds and $200,000 through a federal housing grant. She moved into her new home at Berkshire County Arc in July of 2017 after having spent the last three years in the nursing home, unable to leave because she could not find any alternative that would meet her complex medical needs. Pat “felt like she couldn’t go anywhere.” When you ask Pat about her move into the community-based Berkshire County Arc program and what she likes best about it, she will say “Do you have 10 pages?” as she laughs! “I feel like I’m in a real home. I can actually go out and do things”.
With ongoing support from the Department of Development Services and MassHealth, those living in these homes will have community supports rather than spending many years in nursing homes. Each home will support four individuals. As aging occurs, we all ponder how our health will progress, and some may need the services of a nursing home. But what if that day came sooner than you thought due to a tragic Brain Injury? What if suddenly, you found yourself not only in the nursing home, but the youngest person there? Unfortunately, you would not be alone in that every 13 seconds someone in the U.S. acquires a brain injury. Although the impact of the injuries can vary greatly from one person to the next, often times it will leave a lifelong need for 24/7 care due to complex daily medical needs and significant impairments in overall functioning. Previously the level of supports needed for these individuals left the nursing home as the only option.
Today, fortunately there are programs like the Brain Injury Services Department at Berkshire County Arc that allow for the transition to take place from a nursing home to a true home in the community. In the past five years, Berkshire County Arc has been able to move 28 people out of nursing homes and back into the community into a real home setting. Seven new programs were opened since 2012 in both Berkshire and Hampden County. These programs would not have been possible without the strong advocacy of the public and law makers which lead to the beginning of the Acquired Brain Injury Waiver Program. This program gives those trapped in the nursing home due to a lack of available community options a renewed opportunity at life as they knew it before. Construction of these new homes is a costly venture and startup funds are not available. Berkshire County Arc has been fortunate to have been the recipient of multiple state and federal grant programs, most recently receiving a million dollar grant which significantly and positively impacts the agency’s ability to continue its good works.
About Berkshire County Arc
Founded in 1954, Berkshire County Arc is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization providing a broad range of community-based services to 750 individuals with developmental disabilities, brain injuries and autism throughout Berkshire and Hampden Counties in Massachusetts. The agency offers three day programs, 39 residential programs, employment services, Transitions community-based day services, citizen- and self-advocacy programs, respite services, an adult family care program and Zip ‘N Sort Mail Services. For more information, media professionals may contact Katrina Cardillo at 413-499-4241, ext. 254 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit https://www.bcarc.org.
Director of Marketing & Development
413-499-4241 ext. 254