In the San Quintin Valley, there are no children’s homes that accept children with disabilities. The nearest home that accepts children with special needs is almost three hours away and is well over capacity. As a result, Child Protective Services is often hesitant to intervene in cases of abuse or neglect involving a child with a disability, not having adequate placement options. It is for this reason that we began our residential program.
We believe that all children deserve a safe, loving place to call home. We started with just one child in 2014 and we now care for 12 children, teens, and young adults full-time through our Social Services Department. Eternal Anchor has the only casa hogar within three hours of the San Quintin Valley that accepts children with disabilities and that implements a true family model in our homes with full-time, live-in houseparents. We are passionate about creating homes, not institutions, for our children.
Every child deserves to have access to a quality education. Unfortunately, in high-poverty communities around the globe, public schools are often unwilling or unable to accept children with intellectual disabilities. The San Quintin Valley is no exception.
With only one government special education school in the region, most children with special needs are left without any access to schooling.
For that reason, Eternal Anchor started a special education school in 2015. Initially, the program had 4 students and operated out of a borrowed church Sunday School room.
Today, we have 40 students and a staff comprised of all local teachers who provide quality, individualized educational services.
Early intervention is critical for positively changing the developmental trajectory of babies and toddlers with disabilities. The earlier a child is able to receive therapy services, the better their prognosis.
As such, we prioritize the admission of babies and toddlers into our education program. Each morning, our buses pick them up from their homes. At school, their curriculum emphasizes learning through play and social/emotional development, and they receive physical, speech, and occupational therapy services. Parents are also trained so that they have the necessary tools to promote their child’s development at home.
As our reputation grows in our community, more and more families are bringing their babies to our center. We hope to continue building the capacity of this program in order to meet the growing need for early intervention services in our community.
Adults living with severe physical and/or intellectual disabilities are among the most vulnerable, marginalized people in the world. Cultural stigmas and societal barriers often prevent them from being active, valued members of their communities. They often experience isolation and discrimination that prevents them from experiencing true friendship.
In 2015, Eternal Anchor started a weekend club for adults with disabilities. Since then, it has grown and we now offer daily adult disability services to 16 adults. These services include life skills training, job training, socialization opportunities, and community service activities.
As part of Eternal Anchor’s holistic approach to providing disability services in our community, weekly therapeutic riding sessions are offered to children and adults with disabilities. The benefits of horse therapy are numerous.
We facilitate exercises and activities that develop the fine and gross motor skills of our clients. They also learn about responsibility, self-confidence, assertiveness, and empathy as they work with and help care for the horses. We are current offer horse therapy to individuals living in the San Quintin Valley.
Health & Therapy Services
Eternal Anchor’s Health & Therapy Services team works tirelessly to bring help and hope to individuals and families in every corner of the San Quintin Valley. This team plays a vital role in ensuring the well-being of our community members offering a wide variety of services from in-home consultations and training to partnering with local organizations and schools to help make their facilities more accessible.
Health & Therapy Services also operates the area’s only Mobility Equipment Workshop, where we can design, build, modify, and fit mobility equipment such as wheelchairs, walkers, standers, bath chairs, and much more for children and adults.
Through our in-home consultations, Eternal Anchor helps ensure that families in our community have the tools and equipment needed to provide a safe, nurturing home environment for family members. Eternal Anchor also partners with local and international medical, therapy, and education professionals for our annual Love Extended outreach program. Through Love Extended, we facilitate community training, equipment distribution, and family respite events.