East County News Service
November 5, 2016 (Spring Valley) -- Noah Homes, a nonprofit for adults with developmental disabilities, joined by elected officials and more than 30 community partners announced the completion of the first memory care homes in California, two of the first in the nation, specifically for people with developmental disabilities, including Down syndrome, Autism, cerebral palsy and others. A ribbon cutting on this first-of-its kind project was held on November 3rd.
Two 5,000 sq. ft. houses will open in early 2017 and become home to 20 people with developmental disabilities who have been diagnosed with aging issues, Alzheimer’s or another related dementia. The total project was estimated to cost $6.7 million and is less than $1 million from being completely funded. Noah Homes has set up a GoFundMe to help raise the remaining funds: http://www.gofundme.com/NoahHomes/.
Residents are selected based off an interest list of adults with developmental disabilities receiving services through the San Diego Regional Center. Project partners are hopeful that plans will be replicated by other organizations throughout California and across the nation, alleviating some of the burden of the 15.5 million caregivers who provided an estimated 17.7 billion hours of unpaid care, valued at more than $220 billion in 2013.
“Almost all people with Down syndrome will develop Alzheimer’s as they live into their 60s - starting as early as their 40s - and yet there are no homes specialized for their needs,” said Molly Nocon, CEO of Noah Homes. “As UC San Diego continues to advance research on Alzheimer’s, we are working with organizations around the country to advance quality of care for those affected - obviously, the need is much larger and this is just the beginning.”
For the first time in history, this underserved population of more than 280,000 people with developmental disabilities in California is dealing with issues related to aging, including Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. For instance, life expectancy for people with Down syndrome has increased dramatically in recent decades – from 25 in 1983 to an average age of 60 today.
Noah Homes, a nonprofit providing residential care, community advocacy and collaborative services for adults with developmental disabilities, is working with more than 30 business partners in construction, employment, programming, health care, policy and the nonprofit sector to fill the gap in housing options for those aging with developmental disabilities. Those interested in the project can find more information at www.noahhomes.org<http://www.noahhomes.org>.