Who We Serve

Forward Journey specifically focuses on adults with multiple, severe disabilities who cannot attend other day programs due to their specialized needs.

Our Typical Participant

Attendees range in age from 21 to their early 40s and beyond. Our participants communicate non-verbally and require personal care (such as assistance with toileting and eating, which our program accommodates). They also have a combination of:

  • Moderate to severe intellectual disabilities 
  • Multiple severe physical challenges (that require the use of a wheelchair)
  • Complex medical needs (such as feeding tubes or tracheostomies)
  • Seizure disorders (that require life-saving medications onsite)

Adult Day Program Admissions Criteria

Although the Forward Journey Admissions Committee will make final approvals, applicants must:

  • Be eligible for funding through the Delaware Division of Developmental Disabilities Services (DDDS) – See How to Apply.
  • Be 21 years of age or older, unless approved by DDDS
  • Have a developmental/intellectual disability and other significant physical disabilities which impair their ability to perform three or more activities of daily living independently 
  • Have medical needs that can be safely supported by the Forward Journey nurse, unless accompanied by a one-on-one nurse
  • Have physician’s clearance to be in a supported upright position (with the goal of active weight bearing) and permission for a Physical Therapist pre-admission consultation
  • Participate in and tolerate an active, fast-paced environment, which is often noisy
  • Benefit intellectually and socially from our program in a group setting with our current staff levels
  • Be free from communicable diseases that pose a serious health threat as defined by public health authorities. Examples include positive COVID-19, tuberculosis, an active case of MRSA, active contagious skin conditions, infectious intestinal illness such as C-dif, etc.
  • Have no issues with aggressive/violent behavior or other disruptive anti-social behaviors (e.g. hitting, biting, etc.)

In addition, the applicant’s caregiver must be willing to accept our agency policy against honoring “Do Not Resuscitate” (DNR) orders (if in place).

Forward Journey provides equal opportunities for all participants and applicants for admission without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or marital status in accordance with applicable federal, state, and local laws. See our Title VI Notice.

Common Diagnoses

We understand that you may have concerns about your loved one’s care specific to their medical issues. As Forward Journey is a program for people with disabilities, we are fully prepared to manage many conditions. While this is not a complete list, here are examples of past and current participants’ diagnoses. Our full-time onsite nursing staff provides exceptional care to every participant, keeping in frequent contact with families, guardians and/or caregivers.

Primary Diagnoses

  • Agenesis Corpus Collosum
  • Angelman Syndrome
  • Athetoid Cerebral Palsy
  • Cerebral Palsy (CP)
  • Chromosome Translocation
  • Dandy Walker Syndrome/Dandy Walker Malformation/Dandy Walker Cyst
  • Developmental Disability (DD)
  • Down Syndrome
  • Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS)
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Intellectual/Developmental Disability (I/DD)
  • Mental Retardation (MR) – Severe or profound
  • Monosomy 3
  • Neurological disorder
  • Quadriplegia
  • Rett Syndrome
  • Spastic Diplegia
  • Spastic Quadriplegia
  • Seizure disorder/epilepsy
  • Severe developmental delays 
  • Static encephalopathy
  • Tuberous sclerosis

Secondary Diagnoses

  • Contractures of extremities
  • Cortical blindness
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Kyphoscoliosis
  • Legally Blind
  • Neuromuscular scoliosis
  • Pica
  • Scoliosis
  • Visual impairment