John's Smile Lights Pleasant Grove
Anyone who knows John will tell you he’s talkative, funny and has a smile that lights up a room. But years ago, John’s outlook was not as bright. When he was only eight years old, he moved into a residential center where he lived for the next 44 years. Although he received excellent care, growing up in a residential center was challenging at times.
As years passed, John became increasingly introverted. He spent much of his time alone, had trouble making friends and rarely expressed his feelings. John also had trouble with simple tasks, such as brushing his teeth and changing his clothes.
That all changed when John moved into Pleasant Grove, one of New Jersey MENTOR’s Community Living Residences, where he has lived for the past 19 years. After living in a larger residential facility for most of his life, it naturally took some time for John to open up. But once he did, he made tremendous progress.
The smaller group home setting made John feel more comfortable and gave him a sense of belonging. With access to ongoing support and individualized services, he quickly learned new skills and reached goals he never thought possible. John is now able to complete everyday tasks on his own and is becoming more confident each day. Most importantly, John finally began to build relationships in a place he could truly call home.
Today, John is a vibrant and happy man with a passion for the arts. Living at Pleasant Grove has given him the opportunity to do things he’s never done before and become an active member of the community. He loves to paint, sing and is a true pleasure to be around. John no longer struggles with expressing his feelings and he has built strong bonds with the other residents who he’s proud to call family.