Hoyleton is stepping forward and looking to improve the way youth are being prepared to enter adulthood. As part of a pilot program in Southern Illinois, Hoyleton’s implementation of the LifeSet program will benefit the youth we serve. As an organization, we are constantly evolving and seeking new approaches to providing care. I had an opportunity to see a vision for LifeSet and how it will help our youth by speaking with the individuals that will oversee the program.
What is the difference between LifeSet and the Independent Living Option (ILO) program?
LifeSet uses an intensive hands-on, youth-driven approach to meet the needs of individuals in our care. A LifeSet Specialist meets with a youth weekly to build a rapport, set monthly goals, assess a youth’s progress, and quickly make any changes to the youth’s plan, which are reviewed monthly. This approach is different from ILO, where an ILO Specialist meets with their youth twice a month, and plans are done in six-month increments.
What is involved in a service plan?
Originally in ILO, the service plan was set by the DCFS, the case manager, and the youth. In LifeSet, the order is reversed. It is the youth who charts their course and defines the area of primary focus for themselves. There is still input and recommendations from DCFS that the youth must meet, but there is greater latitude for the youth to define what is important to them. A LifeSet plan also removes the feeling of being overwhelmed by requirements. LifeSet utilizes a shorter one-month, targeted goal approach; versus ILO’s multiple goals at one time.
What happened to youth who were part of the ILO program?
While ILO is still a supported program, most Hoyleton youth who were part of the ILO program migrated to LifeSet as of November 1, 2019. There are a total of 25 youth in the LifeSet program, with a maximum of 30 for the 2020 fiscal year. Since LifeSet requires weekly interactions between the youth and their assigned LifeSet specialist, a specialist carries a maximum of six cases.
How is a youth assigned to the program?
Youth are referred to the program by DCFS. Hoyleton’s LifeSet team does an assessment to verify the youth is a good fit for the program, which makes it possible for a youth to have the best outcome.
What are some of the goals the program’s youth have set for themselves?
It varies, but our youth are concerned with education, whether working toward a GED or preparing for college. Finding employment and learning a valuable skill to take care of themselves in the future along with housing is also a significant concern. Our emergent adults learn how to work with landlords, fill out an application, and take care of their new home with our team’s help.
What is the end goal of the program?
Ultimately, the LifeSet program aims to provide our youth with the best possible foundation as they move into adulthood. Too often, individuals take for granted the adults that help youth find success in adulthood. LifeSet prepares a youth for adulthood by walking beside them and making sure they have the necessary tools to achieve success once they are out of care. LifeSet specialists’ hands-on approach means a youth has a fighting chance at reaching their full potential.
Hoyleton is proud to be a part of making sure the youth in our communities have caring adults in their corner. Are you interested in working with youth and emerging adults to positively impact their futures? Hoyleton’s Human Resources Department would like to meet you. Contact the Human Resources Department at 618.688.4727. Care today. Change Tomorrow.
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