2 weeks ago

Look Inside Young Adult Road Map

5 Guiding Star Point

5 Guiding Star Point five: Find Support Why Find Support? Everybody needs support! Navigating systems (organizations and agencies that provide services) can help you solve many problems. Still, life gets complicated! Some problems show up again. Solutions may not work out. That’s why independent adults in our society must also navigate communities to meet their needs. Communities are groups of people who gather together for a shared purpose. A college neighborhood and an online support group are types of communities. A typical young adult spends many hours each day connecting with others by text, email, or social media. Millions of people participate in RPGs and MMORPGs (role-playing games and massive multi-player online role-playing games). New forms of media keep changing the way people communicate with one another. Popular apps bring people with shared interests into the same physical meeting space. Some of these opportunities are wonderful and helpful, especially if you feel isolated. Some can create more issues, or even dangers. Learning to navigate virtual, online, and “In Real Life” communities is important for two reasons. First, you can stay safe. Second, you can start creating a “personal network” of people and resources that will uplift your spirit and help you stay strong. Building Your Personal Network Learning to navigate these virtual, online, and “In Real Life” communities is important for two reasons. First, you can stay safe. Second, you can start creating a “personal network” of people and resources that will uplift your spirit and help you stay strong. Gaining independence may be very important to you right now. However, staying independent means knowing you can meet challenges. Whether it’s a lost wallet, a broken relationship, a serious trauma, or a really bad day at work, your personal support network is the glue that holds a life together. Your role in finding support is to: 1. Know how to locate resources that might help you in a challenging situation or emergency. 2. Be aware of your own emotional health, so you know when to seek support. 3. Identify a group of trusted people who can offer reliable advice and help. 4. Think critically (judge for yourself, with the help of trusted people) about information, images, and offers that reach you online or through social media. Share information safely. 5. Explore activities that bring you into contact with people who share your interests and support your strengths. 56

Guiding Star Point One: Set GOAL Activity 5.1 Young Adult Road Map, page xx Part One: Locate Resources to Meet Challenges Locating resources means creating a list of where to go, what to do, and whom to contact if things don’t happen the way you expected. Sometimes it can be hard to think clearly in a challenging situation. You might feel rushed or panicked. When you have the first few steps of a back-up plan, you can take a deep breath. Once you start living out your plan, other solutions will be easier to find. What types of resources do you need in your back-up plan? Start by looking at your own strengths and concerns. You can use the worksheets in Guiding Star Point One (Set Goals): Activity 1.1, “What Are My Strengths?” and Activity 1.2, “What Are My Concerns?” This allows you to look down the road and see where issues might occur. Resources for Food and Housing See Activity 1.1, What Are My Strengths? * * See Activity 1.2, What Are My Concerns?” For example, let’s say one of the strengths you listed was an apartment close to a bus line that you can take to your job. A concern you listed was “I’m worried about covering my bills.” If you can’t pay for a monthly bus pass, you won’t get to work. You might even get stranded somewhere late at night. Here’s how your strategy might work: l Your first solution might be to look for resources that can lower the cost of transportation (such as a student or disability discount). l You talk to your case manager. She helps you find an insurance program that will reimburse you (pay you back after you have spent money) for some transportation expenses. This means you can use a taxi (such as Uber or Lyft, if you have a debit card) when a bus isn’t available. The case manager advises saving a little extra money if you want to use this program, because it takes a few weeks to get a reimbursement check. l You and your case manager work on a budget. You find that after your bus pass expenses, you can put aside $15 for a “taxi” fund. That money will get reimbursed every month, so the fund will grow. The paperwork for that program seems complicated, so you ask for help. l Meanwhile, the mental health agency has some one-time bus passes for clients, so the case manager gives you one to keep in case of emergency. Now you have a plan (use resources that lower costs), a back-up plan (use money you have saved to take a taxi when you need one, because you Building a Back Up Plan Leisure can get reimbursed later), and a possible emergency plan Housing Employment (use a free, one-time bus pass). Transportation Community If you have concerns that might affect your health and safety, look for resources before the issue becomes a crisis. You may be concerned about unstable housing (you have a place to live or stay now, but it isn’t safe, or you may have to leave soon). Another example is low food security (you don’t often eat nourishing food because you—or the people with whom you live—can’t afford it). Start with agencies where you already receive services, such as a community mental health agency or system of care. Talk to your case manager. Be honest about your situation. You can also call 211 or go to to find out about services available in your local community. Health Purpose Other See Activity 5.1, Building a Back Up Plan * 57