Moses is a young adult on the spectrum who has been coming to us every Saturday morning for the past three months. He was introduced to us by a family member in a last ditch attempt to get him to abandon his computer for a few hours every week and interact with the outside world. Moses is one of the first members of a relatively new program we now offer called ‘The School for Gentlemen.’ This program is aimed at helping teenagers and young adults on the spectrum transition into adult life by teaching them what we call ‘university level’ perspective taking. Topics covered include how to deal with the opposite sex, how to be interested in others and how to dance the complex dance of relationships and career outside of the family. And so far it seems to be working. According to Moses’s Dad since starting this program he is turning a corner and at places where he was previously not welcome due to his energy and behavior he is now a person others are looking forward to have as part of their group.
As well as helping with chores (such as trail clearing and animal feeding) and learning social skills Moses has also been volunteering at a playdate with one of our families who has a much younger child on the autism spectrum.
Here is what they have to say about him and his participation in their playdate:
‘Moses is a great addition to our family playdates at Horse Boy! My “typical” boys in particular love seeing him when we visit. He is a talented builder and has lots of expertise with LEGOs, which is the most favorite topic of my 5 year old. He is a bona fide computer guru and can talk to my 8 year old about seemingly any video game in existence (along with tips and tricks!). The boys also love playing water wars, sword fights, games of catch, and lots of other made-up-on-the-fly games with Moses. He is up for anything, always patient with them and always kind. The presence of “big kid” Moses means that while their brother is enjoying horse time and between their own turns on the horse, the boys will always be happy and entertained.’