Life skills in Belarus

At the Isle of Hope, the abilities of young people with disabilities are assessed. Then skills to stimulate and encourage their full potential to be reached, within the limits of their disability, are developed and implemented.

Many of the young people are volatile and can become easily distressed at the slightest alteration to their surroundings or routine. Isle of Hope provides a calming, structured environment which provides relaxation and support.

Life skills training offers a chance of some degree of personal independence (once very few could go to the toilet unaided: now all can). Each young person is also encouraged to undertake light domestic skills such as cleaning, gardening or sweeping.

An activity the young people are excited to get involved in also raises a little bit of local funding. Each day a group go out and collect waste paper and plastic from the streets. The fruits of their exercise are then sold to a local recycling company.

Ivan takes great delight in helping keep the grounds and the immediate area around the Isle of Hope Centre clean, collecting up any waste paper, and as necessary clearing the snow, choosing this over all other activities offered – he finds great pleasure in this  important task. When indoors he enjoys drawing and is happy to participates in all the leisure activities offered.