VersAbility Awarded $21,000 from Community Foundations on the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck

A woman smiles against a painted mural of flowers.

The Lewis B. Puller Center along Main Street in Gloucester got a boost to its mission thanks to the Community Foundations on the Middle Peninsula and the Northern Neck. River Counties Community Foundation awarded VersAbility Resources $10,000, the Gloucester Community Foundation gave $3,000, the Mathews Community Foundation $5,00 and the Sanders Foundation $3,000.

Funds will be used to build on offerings of providing long-term skill-building, community facing events, and day programs to adults with disabilities.

The Puller Center is the only program of its kind in the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck region, and without it, many adults and seniors with significant disabilities would be unable to experience the dignity of inclusion. In Fiscal Year 2021, the Puller Center served 47 adults with disabilities including four seniors. It costs an average of $15,842 each year to provide services to one senior with disabilities.

People with disabilities in the Puller Center program are typically part of low to moderate income populations and rely on Medicaid funding and community support. They require supervision, support, and direct support in an integrative community. The Puller Center provides Inclusive Community Engagement for People With Disabilities that nurtures self-determination, independence, sense of belonging and authentic community integration.

The Puller Center also serves seniors with disabilities by providing a day support program that provides daily structured activities, social interaction and services to nourish skill development. Thanks to this program, People With Disabilities volunteered with Meals on Wheels and the Gloucester-Mathews Humane Society; participated in art classes at Bay School of the Arts; and visited the local libraries and community events.

These Community Foundations enhance the quality of life for residents throughout the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck counties and towns. Every year the Foundations award grants that advance goals of cultural vibrancy, economic prosperity, educational success, environmental stewardship and health and wellness.

VersAbility serves more than 1,800 people with disabilities and their families each year in early childhood, student services, day support, residential, and diverse employment programs.

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