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Moving into a home of your own is part of the American dream, but for people with intellectual disabilities, it's also an important step in building self-esteem as independent adults.

Since the opening of the first home in 1984, Heritage Christian Services has grown to more than 100 sites, most of which are neighborhood homes and apartments throughout the Greater Rochester and Buffalo-Niagara regions.

The physical and medical needs of the individuals HCS serves range from moderate to complex – and HCS offers a wide range of residential facilities, including homes of all women or all men living together; mixed facilities; one-level homes with wide hallways and universal adaptations for persons who use wheelchairs; and individual apartments where kitchen facilities and living rooms are shared.

Many of those homes are certified, which means the agency provides 24-hour staffing with a committed team of resident counselors, direct support professionals, home managers, health support professionals and clinicians. An emphasis on high staff to person ratios ensures quality care and appropriate individual attention for both medical and physical needs.

For people who are interested in more personalized staffing hours and a smaller number of roommates, the agency also offers customized residential options.