Magazine article Children's Voice

Residential Cottage Designed to Feel like Home

Magazine article Children's Voice

Residential Cottage Designed to Feel like Home

Article excerpt

The Hillside Family of Agencies' new AdaptaCare Cottage doesn't look much like a residential care institution. On a virtual tour, the ranch-style building looks more like an attractive single-family home, with green siding, red shutters, covered front porch, and flowering bushes lining the front sidewalk.

Inside, a living room and recreation room are painted in earthy reds, yellows, and browns. An "all seasons" room has large windows, deck-style furniture, and potted plants. A Yankees baseball team poster hangs in a boy's bedroom.

The cottage is a design the western New York state agency hopes it will never outgrow.

"Like most agencies, Hillside has facilities of various vintages that were originally intended for a specific client population and type of programming," says Paul Perrotto, Hillside's Chief Financial Officer. "As client needs, regulatory requirements, and programming have changed, we have renovated and retrofitted existing structures. Renovation is extremely expensive, however, and it isn't always cost-effective."

Fortunately for Hillside, an anonymous benefactor recognized the problem and donated $ 1 million to allow the agency to design a facility that can meet stringent federal and state child welfare, mental health, and developmental disability regulatory requirements, as well as easily adapt to meet new programming needs.

In keeping with their benefactors wishes, Hillside is making the cottage blueprints and concept available at no charge to other agencies. …

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