Our Neighbor Inc. is now accepting applications for its newest house equipped for people with disabilities.
The nonprofit group has two other houses near Brenau University that give young adults between the ages of 18 and 40 the ability to live independently with peers and a caregiver.
“We are not a group home. We rent rooms or apartments to young adults with disabilities,” Our Neighbor co-founder Marty Owens said. “If they have needs, there is someone there.”
Each home is equipped for three people and fitted specifically for their needs. Owens said the young adults Our Neighbor serves have very few options when it comes living arrangements: either with their parents or in a nursing home.
“We don’t want anyone to have to live in a nursing home,” Owens said. “We just fully believe that any young person, no matter their limitations, they have a purpose and they have certain gifts.”
Aside from housing, Our Neighbor also will begin offering a number of new classes in February.
The classes, including gardening, jewelry making and painting, will teach skills that will help people nurture their talents and lead more meaningful lives.
“We are hoping they will find some special interests through that,” Owens said.
There will also be classes that help people reinforce their independence.
“Some of them will just be practical life skills,” Owens said.
Owens and her son, Randy, founded Our Neighbor after seeing a lack of opportunities for people with disabilities after high school.
Many are forced to stay home because they cannot work or live on their own.
“It can lead to depression,” Owens said. “It’s a life we don’t want any young person to have.”