The participants at West Toronto KEYS to INclusion are young adults with intellectual disabilities who are no longer attending school during the day. KEYS is best suited to those who are:
- able to participate in a group and work toward common goals
- able to participate in a 1 staff: 4 participants ratio
- able to participate in community outings, workshops, and take the TTC together with staff
- interested in ongoing learning of life skills, cooking, literacy and numeracy
- interested in being involved in the community through volunteer and/or paid work
West Toronto KEYS to INclusion offers 3 pillars of opportunity for our participants. These are:
1. Ongoing Learning
- Lunch and Learn: daily activity during which the participants menu plan, shop, prepare, cook and share a meal with an emphasis on healthy choices, kitchen hygiene and safety, budgeting, and working together as a group
- Monthly community lunches to share with friends and supporters of KEYS
- Arts and Literacy: art expression, music, numeracy and literacy
- Safety and Community Skills: taking public transit, street safety, neighbourhood awareness
2. Work and Volunteer Experiences
- Community Contributors: Our participants are matched with community business partners based on abilities and interests, and are supported with job coaches in volunteer work placements.
- KEYS participants volunteer as a group at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Etobicoke, and at Lucy McCormick school
- Our participants contribute to the local Junction neighbourhood by assisting businesses with jobs such as distributing flyers.
3. Social Recreation and Fitness
- Our participants engage in social recreational and fitness activities together, such as joining in the Community Junction Zumba classes.
- Regular outings to the West End YMCA, where KEYS has a group membership
- Community outings to visit places of interest in our community, such as High Park, the AGO, apple orchard, ROM, bowling, Royal Winter Fair, the Exhibition etc.
- Annual overnight camp experience
KEYS is typically closed the first week each of July and August.
In July and August Lunch ‘n Learn and community trips and outings are held on longer days Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday (closed Mondays and Fridays).