Alexis will benefit from a supported apartment part of the accommodation centre run by the association, "Turbulences!". He and seven other people with autism will be welcomed into this new kind of home. He gives us his impressions after hearing that his application was chosen.
Since 2012, he has been living in Turbulences’ Specialised Adaptation Section (SAS). In 2015, he was admitted jointly to Turbulences’ ESAT (assistance facility through work) and to the Turbulences accommodation centre. He has set himself the goal of acquiring greater independence by taking advantage of the support and learning offered at the home, to move towards a more independent solution.
Now 28 years old, and after 5 years at the home, he is preparing himself for this new stage and the move planned for November 2020. For Alexis, the new experience, which he has carefully thought through, is an additional step towards achieving his medium-term ambition of moving to even greater things.
How do you feel about this new experience of living in a semi-independent apartment?
“Pretty good. A little stressed and apprehensive about eating and cleaning.
But the reason they offered me this opportunity is because they believe I can do it.
It’s a very beneficial experience for me. I see it as a step towards more inclusive accommodation like a studio.
I feel positive about it. I have everything to gain and nothing to lose. When you know what you want you have to go for it, otherwise you never do anything. You have to take risks and initiative.”
What does moving into an apartment mean for you?
“It’s an opportunity to achieve more independence, and everything that represents. I see it as a real-life trial before moving into housing completely separate from the accommodation centre.
It is big a step changing surroundings, living in a building with ordinary neighbours who do not necessarily know about disabilities.”
How did you feel about living in the accommodation centre?
“It was a new experience for me; the first step after my own family home, and semi-independent living. And now, five years later, I’m moving into the apartment. Maybe in five years’ time, I’ll move somewhere else!”
How do you see the future?
“I can see myself moving into social housing for people with disabilities. Time will tell, but I’ll do everything I can to get there.
It’s hard to imagine that for people with disabilities. Everyone is different. I can see myself living alone or with flatmates, but not too many. We’ll see how it goes living with others in the apartment.”
The “Turbulences!” centre offers its residents support to achieve independence in order to enable those who wish to consider social housing to do so.
Supported housing would provide the conditions needed to assess in situ the mental and instrumental independence of the person. This additional experimental stage(s) with supported housing would be the last "step” towards allowing residents to subsequently consider entering an inclusive home having already got their bearings.