We know that parents want to stay current with their young adult’s progress toward meeting their goals. Our Life Skills Coaches provide their client’s parents with a progress report every two weeks, by email or phone, whichever is preferred by the parents. This allows parents to connect with what their young adult is learning in their coaching sessions as well as offer support to help their young adult reach their goals. In addition, a team meeting is held every three months to further monitor progress. The team meeting is attended by the young adult, Life Skills Coach, our Clinical Director and the parents of the young adult. Other support people, such as therapists or psychologists, may also be included if the parent and client so choose. At the team meeting, the young adult is celebrated for meeting their goals, current goals are discussed to determine progress, and new goals may be added. We consider parents to be a vital and important part of the coaching process and want them to feel included in our program.
This depends on your young adult’s individual needs and the goals the team has identified. We generally recommend four hours of coaching per week. We have found that steady, consistent progress is made when the client meets with their Life Skills Coach for two sessions, each two hours in length, every week.
The club l.a. social club is specifically designed for those young adults who may need a little extra support in meeting friends, maintaining friendships, and improving social skills. They may have had negative social experiences in the past and may avoid interactions with others. When young adults attend a club l.a. event, they are able to connect with other young adults who have similar interests and who perhaps have had similar social experiences. All club l.a. events are facilitated by Advance LA Life Skills Coaches who offer scaffolding for social encounters. This support allows the young adult to feel more comfortable socially and learn new skills to support future interactions.
Parent coaching sessions will differ based on unique goals and needs. Our Clinical Director will spend time with the parents to identify areas of strength and challenge.
Parent Coaching helps to highlight family system strengths and offer strategies for learning new ways to support a young adult as they advance toward greater levels of independence. Depending on the goals, our Clinical Director may meet with parents individually at first, and then have the young adult or other family members join the meeting as the sessions progress.
The ultimate goal of Parent Coaching is to create a partnership between parents and their child, that supports the young adult in becoming more independent, while also allowing you to have a more “adult relationship” with your child.
Our Life Skills Coaches typically meet with their clients twice a week, for two hour sessions. The sessions take place where the support is needed most, such as on a college campus, in social situations in the community, at a job fair or on a job site, or at home.
Our Coaches work with their clients in creative, innovative, and enjoyable ways. We have created specially designed interventions based on our years of experience with young adults and their families, in addition to the most up-to-date research.
This is the typical structure for a coaching session:
- The coach begins by sharing the session agenda, followed by reviewing goals, and setting intentions or specific goals for that day.
- “In-the-moment” instruction is provided – specifically skills are practiced in the environment in which the young adult needs to use the skill.
- The Coach will provide instruction or interventions in the specific area of focus, mode; what the young adult needs to do, offer opportunities for guided practice, and then provide feedback.
- At the end of the session, coaches may assign follow up homework or projects for the next session.
- All sessions involve a great deal of positive reinforcement and allow the young adult to celebrate each step toward becoming more independent.
Through our coaching services, parent coaching, social club events, and enrichment classes, Advance LA addresses challenges in areas including vocation/employment, self-advocacy, academics, executive functioning, time management, organization, independent living skills, hygiene, stress/anxiety, money management and budgeting, recreation and social engagement, making friends, dating, and motivation.
Advance LA works collaboratively with the young adults, families, and professionals to ensure consistency in services. Collaboration can include coaches and/or supervisor coordinating services, sharing information and goals, as well as team meetings. In addition, Advance LA works with each young adult to share their progress and needs with all treatment team members on a regular basis.
Advance LA provides hands-on consultation support for professionals in multiple settings including universities, colleges, schools and other service providers. Our support also includes training, program development, and team meetings to facilitate and monitor the implementation and progress of these programs.
Advance LA offers a range of services for young adults who are in need of additional support in order to be successful in their current environment. Many universities and colleges have reached out to Advance LA in order to gain assistance in meeting the needs of their students with special needs.
We have had particular success in working with young adults in the transition into college. We provide the support they need to access services available to them, develop executive functioning skills and organization systems, and ultimately help them successfully enroll in and complete the coursework in their chosen field.
Advance LA relies on a team-based approach. Team members may include all significant people in the client’s life. For example, the team may include the client, family members, service providers/professionals working with the client, the coach, and the administrators of the program. An assessment is conducted at the outset of services and continues throughout the coaching process. Once the initial assessment is complete, individualized goals and interventions are developed in conjunction with the client’s team. The coaches implement the individualized program plan, assess progress, celebrate successes with the client, and work with the team to adjust goals. When needed, the Advance LA team will communicate with instructors, dorm personnel, employers, and others in the community to gauge client progress and identify additional needs.
While interventions used are often creative, innovative, and fun, they are firmly based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). ABAis an evidence-based practice that is frequently utilized in helping people achieve important goals. Within this framework, we focus on strength-based approaches in the natural environment to enhance outcomes and build on the client’s current skills and personal competencies.
We find that our services are the most effective when we are able to work as a team on agreed upon goals. Many times therapists or other service providers have been working on developing skills with their clients but wish they could be with the clients more often, helping them apply these skills in various settings. This is where we can help. We will work with you to identify the areas you would like us to focus on and the strategies you have found to be useful. We will then help your client generalize these skills in their communities with the team’s support and guidance.
Advance LA coaches work to support clients in a variety of ways and focus on the development and enhancement of: independent living skills, executive functioning skills, social relationships, academics, internships and careers, as well as health and wellness.
We provide the various supports required for the client to achieve success in the community, whether it is at home, school, or at work.
One important factor in Advance LA’s success is our intentional focus on each individual and his/her/their goals. We work with young adults and teens who are in need of additional support in reaching their personal goals. The specialized and individualized nature of our program has allowed us to be successful with clients with a wide range of needs and diagnoses including: Autism Spectrum Disorders, Learning Disabilities, Executive Functioning Challenges, ADHD, and Social/Emotional/ or Behavioral challenges including dual diagnosis.
There are several reasons that our clients experience positive outcomes and an improved quality of life. Some important aspects include:
- Clearly defined realistic goals help support the client in moving toward achievement with improved confidence and efficiency.
- The use of evidence-based strategies and direct instruction in various natural settings allows our clients to develop new skills. In turn, these skills then translate into more successful experiences in many aspects of our clients’ lives.
- Clients receive intervention and support in better managing their time, organizing various aspects of their lives, and completing projects.
- Continued progress monitoring and feedback allow the client to celebrate successes and note areas for improvement
YOUNG ADULTS & TEENS
You don’t have to tell anyone you have a coach! However, we have found that many people like to share with others that they have a mentor or coach. It is totally up to you and can be discussed with your coach before you go out into the community. When you are out with your coach, it will likely feel pretty natural – you may feel like you are out with a friend, older sibling, or mentor.
We have many coaches on our team, each with their own unique set of skills and talents. Our Clinical Director will determine who will be the best match, based on your personality, interests, and your goals.
We have a lot of experience working with young adults and teens who are working toward their goals and dreams. Also, we keep up with the most up-to-date research on “what works” and train our coaches to use those tools to help you.
This depends on what your goals are and how quickly you want to get there. Most of our clients work with their Life Skills Coach for four hours each week.
Most teens and young adults need some support or help in order to get what they want out of life. Advance LA coaches will work with you and focus on helping you feel more confident and successful in all areas of life.
Some of the areas we have helped young adults and teens with are:
- Managing your time
- Making friends and keeping them
- Improving social skills
- Learning independent life skills
- Getting organized
- Building motivation to get stuff done
- Managing your money
- Getting and keeping a job
- Doing well in school
- Avoiding failure to launch syndrome
- Advocating for yourself- Asking for what you need!
- Living on your own
- Learning how to engage appropriately in spectrum dating & romance
- Learning more about “how to be independent” and learning some tools for being successful can empower you and offer that extra confidence you need to move forward.
There is no “typical session” as it varies from person to person. Depending on what you need – we will be out there in the community helping you do it! Our coaches can work with you on your college campus, in a classroom, at a social event, at job fairs, or in your home.
Here is what will typically happen: You will talk with your coach and name a place to meet up. You then may chat about what you want to work on and what you need to do to get it done Then, you will go out into the world, try new things together, explore your surroundings and learn new skills. The good news is that you will have someone there to support you until you feel comfortable doing these new things on your own. At the end of your time together, you will talk with your coach about what you will be working on until the next session. And then make plans for your next meeting.
Our Advance LA clients enjoy their meetings with their coach. You will be working on the goals that you are interested in and with a person you like and trust. You are sure to have fun along the way!
club l.a. is for young adults, just like you, who are looking to meet new people who are welcoming, interesting, and fun. We will introduce you to people you want to meet and offer a place for you to get to know others with similar interests. Each club meeting will involve different activities. Some sample activities are: bowling, interactive video game competitions, hiking, karaoke, and game night.
Advance LA is one of the signature programs of The Help Group, the largest nonprofit of its kind in the United States. Since 1975, The Help Group has worked with children, adolescents, and adults with special needs related to autism spectrum disorder, learning differences, ADHD, developmental delays, abuse, and emotional problems.