Bridgeway Apartments named as community of quality

Published 7:00 am Saturday, February 13, 2016

DAILY CHORES: Bridgeway resident Rita Bond folds her laundry in her apartment.  Photos by Cassandra Favre

DAILY CHORES: Bridgeway resident Rita Bond folds her laundry in her apartment.
Photos by Cassandra Favre

The National Affordable Housing Management Association recently named Picayune’s Bridgeway Apartments a Community of Quality.
The facility provides an independent living option for intellectually and developmentally disabled adults. The complex is staffed 24-hours a day, seven days a week by trained personnel who provide supervised living and supported employment services.
This was Bridgeway’s first time applying for the distinction, Bridgeway’s Director of Operations Jason Kirkland said.
“We submitted a number of documents,” he said. “They look at Housing and Urban Development scores, which is federal housing for low-income. There is a special designation for the special needs population. They also look at the whole management of the facility, the overall services provided and customer satisfaction surveys. Receiving this national recognition is a testament to the diligent work of Saint Francis Community Services and the local efforts of the Bridgeway staff to ensure residents have every opportunity to live happy, independent and fulfilling lives.”
Rita Bond has lived in Bridgeway for the past 12 years and said she does not plan to move.
“It’s wonderful,” she said. “I work at Paul’s Pastry as a dishwasher and my job coach stays with me. He helps me lift the big mixing bowls into the sink so I can wash them. After I’m done, he lifts them back out. They are there to help me if I need assistance. I’ve been doing awesome at my job and am polite to my co-workers.”
Bond said she enjoys many of the Bridgeway sponsored activities and one event in particular brings a smile to her face.
Last September, the group traveled to Walt Disney World, which Bond described as a big place where she had lots of fun.
She is also an avid participant in the Special Olympics. One wall of her apartment is lined with ribbons and medals. She competes in the softball, shot put and dash events.
“I love it here,” she said. “They have a staff that comes here if I need help with anything,” Bond said. “They show me what needs to be done to keep me safe. It’s an awesome place to live and the people are nice to me.”

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