STARS Among Us - Some “STARS” Don’t Walk the Red Carpet, but Follow a Path to Independence

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* Special Needs
* Independence

* Non-profit

* Raritan - New Jersey - US

RARITAN, N.J. - May 28, 2013 - PRLog -- Lawrence Pallino of Phillipsburg, New Jersey, was honored at the Fourteenth Annual “Community STARS” Dinner on May 21st at the Stone Terrace in Hamilton Square, NJ.

Everyone faces challenges and trials throughout their lives.  Some face larger obstacles than others.  It isn’t the challenge however, that is significant, but rather the manner in which the challenge is met.  Nineteen individuals - representing several social service agencies statewide, came together to receive Community STARS Awards in recognition of their accomplishments in meeting life’s challenges with grace, dignity and determination. The honor was presented by The New Jersey Association of Community Providers, a professional association that promotes a greater quality of life for people with developmental disabilities.

Lawrence Pallino came to Alternatives Inc. in 2008.  He had never lived away from home before so Larry was faced with all kinds of challenges as he became accustomed to the behaviors and lifestyles of his roommates.  His apprehension in living in a new environment after so many years required the full attention and understanding of Alternatives’ staff for activities that many of us consider to be routine.  The simple act of going to a doctor’s appointment would be enough to cause destructive outbursts.

Staff worked with Larry through this transition and helped him to develop coping skills and learn how to handle his anxiety.  Part of his plan included becoming active - he volunteered at an animal shelter and did odd jobs - contributing to his personal growth.  

After three years, Larry had developed the self confidence and responsibility to move into his own apartment.  Since moving into Alternatives’ Supervised Apartment Program, Larry has done exceptionally well.  He shows great maturity and has learned the skills to cope with his bouts of anxiety.  Larry enjoys his free time; he’s a big sports fan, collects horror figures and tooling around on the computer.  

Based in Raritan, Alternatives provides residential, employment, and support services to individuals with developmental disabilities, mental health diagnoses and other special needs. The agency provides services in Somerset, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Monmouth and Warren Counties. For information on Alternatives, please call 908-685-1444 ext. 226 or visit
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Tags:Special Needs, Independence
Location:Raritan - New Jersey - United States
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