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New Perspectives - Oct, 1993 Issue #24 

Redlands, CA. * 1-800-474-4848
Jayne Longnecker, Executive Program Director
by Linda Shaffer

BENCHMARK is a new non-profit organization dedicated to helping "young adults at risk" transition into the world of education, work, health and independence. The Y.A.L.E. program is the first in a series of programs to be offered.

Y.A.L.E. (Young Adults Living Environment) focuses on assisting students to gain the skills necessary to equip them to live independently. It is a "hands-on" "in the field" approach. Students will share a two bedroom apartment in a gated community, with each student assuming responsibility for his/her share of the cleaning, meal planning, cooking, etc.

An individualized education, vocational, and treatment plan will be formulated for each student. YALE students may show some of the following problems: learning differences, attention deficit, distressed family relationships, signs of depression, avoidance of personal responsibility, unwise choices, poor motivation, some drug/alcohol abuse, possible adoption issues, and a need for structure.

The community at large will be the primary "classroom" utilizing nearby community colleges, training programs, or specialized teaching services. BENCHMARK will assist students to prepare for and look for work. Students needing to complete high school can work on a GED.

Most BENCHMARK students will need six to twelve months.

Copyright 1993, Woodbury Reports, Inc. (This article may be reproduced without prior approval if the copyright notice and proper publication and author attribution accompanies the copy.)

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