On a quiet, residential street in York, ME sits Maine Behavioral Healthcare’s southernmost group home. Residential care workers like Josiah Clark take 12-hour shifts at the building, providing round-the-clock supervision, care, and support to its seven clients.
In many ways the York Adult Residence is just like other homes – a large oak table in the dining room invites residents to gather around and talk, the walls are decorated in colorful art, and each client has their own bedroom upstairs. Even holidays are celebrated family-style; a calendar in the kitchen marks upcoming birthdays, which will be celebrated with cake and singing. “One of our residents has been living here for about twenty years,” Josiah said, describing the difference between the York Residence and transitional care facilities (where it is expected that clients will return to independent living as soon as possible). “People that come here stay here. They really consider this place home.”
Josiah and his fellow care workers support residents with tasks that they may need help with, like cooking, paperwork and cleaning. They also help residents get to their appointments, manage their medications, and help them with errands like grocery shopping. The long hours might be exhausting for some, but Josiah seems to thrive in this environment.
“Josiah consistently maintains a positive attitude, regardless of the daily challenges that come with working in a residential program,” said Dawn Hardy, Residential Program Manager. “He goes above and beyond with extra tasks that no one asks him to do, and has always been willing to work extra hours at our other residential locations (in Sanford and Biddeford) even when the request comes without a moment’s notice.”
Katie Foss, Residential Program Manager at Sanford and Biddeford, praised not only his flexibility but also his easy-going demeanor. “Josiah’s calm nature makes our residents feel that they can talk with him about concerns or needs,” she said.
But why does Josiah himself love this work? “I wanted to do something to help others,” he said when asked why he decided to become a residential care worker. “My favorite part of the job is getting to know one of the residents so well that I am able to put myself in their shoes and know what to do or say in order to help them.”
Thank you to all of our compassionate residential care workers who, like Josiah, have gone the extra mile to make their group house a home.
About Residential Services
Maine Behavioral Healthcare has 12 residential homes for adults with mental illness. Locations span as far south at York and as far north as Belfast, with a total capacity of 76 beds. Click Here to learn more.