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Devereux New Jersey’s virtual day program helps adults stay active, engaged during COVID-19


Devereux New Jersey recently launched a virtual day program to help adults learn valuable life, job and social skills, while staying active and engaged during the pandemic. The program includes academic and therapeutic activities, such as self-advocacy groups; social-skill building; and interactive games and science experiments.

Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health New Jersey recently launched a virtual day program to help adults living with emotional, behavioral and cognitive differences learn valuable life, job and social skills, while staying active and engaged during the pandemic.

Devereux New Jersey’s virtual day services, which are held via Zoom videoconferencing five days per week, mirror a typical in-person day program curriculum, and include academic and therapeutic activities, such as:

  • Self-advocacy groups
  • Job exploration
  • Voter education
  • Social skill-building
  • Interactive games and science experiments
  • Guided exercise and dance classes
  • Cooking classes
  • Music therapy

“Our team worked swiftly to develop this new service delivery model so we could continue to provide safe, structured and educationally enriching activities for the adults in our care to enjoy during COVID-19,” said Devereux New Jersey Executive Director Brian Hancock. “Once the New Jersey Division of Development Disabilities announced providers in the state could begin offering remote services to eligible individuals, our staff developed a curriculum and created lesson plans. The fact that we were able to get this program up and running in an extremely short period of time was a testament to our best-in-class workforce and their dedication to the individuals and families we serve.”

Embracing online learning

Nearly 80 adults participate in Devereux New Jersey’s virtual day services on any given weekday. Team members hold three classes per day with highly trained staff leading participants through each lesson plan.

These services are available to adults who reside with Devereux New Jersey, as well as those who live with others providers in the state or with their families.

"This program has reenergized our staff – they are excited to bring their own unique ideas and expertise to the curriculum,” noted Devereux New Jersey Vocational Director Yasmin Qazilbash. “The individuals we serve have the opportunity to interact with peers and staff members they have not seen in-person in months, which has done wonders for their social skill-building and overall mental and emotional health. Some adults who originally chose not to participate in virtual day services became interested once they heard their housemates having fun during class. The next thing you know, those individuals became fully engaged, learning remotely and loving the program, too!”

Learn more about Devereux New Jersey’s virtual day program, and learn more about Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health.


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