Each Riverbrook woman works with her staff advocate and the Day Program Director to create a schedule that will keep her engaged and inspired throughout the year.
“Riverbrook women lead all-inclusive, active lives. They maintain employment, take part in classes, and are dynamic participants in the broader community.”
–Colleen Powers, Day Program Director
EDUCATION & SKILL BUILDING
RIVERBROOK WOMEN LEARN about themselves and the world around them through activities designed to broaden their perspectives and develop new skills. Current events discussion groups, life skills classes, and journal writing workshops are just a few of the ways participants expand their horizons. Computer instruction, conducted one-on-one and designed to meet the needs of the individual, allows the women to connect with friends and family. Journaling and expressive articulation encourage the women to express themselves freely. Skills for independent living are explored, from money management to planning a menu, shopping and cooking a meal. Classroom instruction often takes a backseat to hands-on experience as participants are empowered to explore through doing.
VOCATIONAL TRAINING PROGRAMS also play a role in Riverbrook’s educational offerings. Each individual contributes to a comprehensive vocational assessment that outlines her aptitudes and interests as well as her assets and limitations. All are given a recommendation based on the amount of support they need while setting goals that strive toward independence. Partnerships with local businesses and organizations allow Riverbrook women to learn new skills in a vast array of fields such as the culinary industry, animal care, clerical work, cleaning, agriculture, customer-service and other fields.
VISUAL & PERFORMING ARTS
CREATIVE OPPORTUNITIES are a core facet of Riverbrook’s day services program. Through creative experiences, participants explore and develop imagination, motor skills, interpersonal relationships, cooperation and teamwork. Riverbrook women participate in a variety of fine arts and performance activities at Community Access to the Arts (CATA).
MUSIC IS a universal language, and at Riverbrook women who struggle to communicate often find strength and human connection through our acclaimed music program. The group music class is joyful and focuses on creating a sense of community and accomplishment. Individual music lessons are available, as well, and are personalized to their interests and skill level.
THE RIVERBROOK WRITERS CIRCLE meets monthly to explore a timely topic through creative writing, allowing participants to consider, develop and express opinions and feelings in a safe and supportive environment. Riverbrook houses several artists and photographers whose works are on display in various art shows throughout the county.
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Some of our Community Partners
- Community Access to the Arts
- Purradise Cat Shelter
- Elder Services of Berkshire County
- Red Lion Inn
- Marian Helpers Center
- Stockbridge Congregational Church
- Kripalu Yoga Center
- St. Paul’s Children’s Center
- Berkshire Hills Regional School District
- Department of Developmental Services
- Stockbridge & Southern Berkshires
Chambers of Commerce
- Canyon Ranch
- Stockbridge Council on Aging
- Lee Bank
- Lee & Stockbridge Libraries
- Austen Riggs Center
AT RIVERBROOK, program participants are encouraged to engage with the broader community in the Berkshires and beyond. Neighbors and visitors stop by often for a chat and enjoy spending time with Riverbrook residents and staff. Riverbrook women are welcomed by name throughout the community in which they live.
COLLABORATIONS with other local organizations have provided opportunities for Riverbrook women to engage directly with their community. Riverbrook maintains partnerships with local libraries. Currently, the women are taking part in an educational series at The Stockbridge Library. A partnership with Monument Mountain Greenhouse cultivates plants and enduring friendships. For over twenty years, Riverbrook women have joined guests at Kripalu Yoga Center for a weekly DansKinetics class and healthy lunch.
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES also abound. One program participant enjoys reading books to Muddy Brook Elementary School children in their classroom. Others have worked at Purradise Cat Shelter watering, feeding and caring for cats. Through our connection with Elder Services, Riverbrook volunteers deliver Meals on Wheels to housebound individuals, providing food as well as companionship to those in need on a weekly basis.