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Kansas group enriches the lives of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities

Corey Graham, a Mission Project participant, talks with Steve Kraske
Danie Alexander
Corey Graham, a Mission Project participant, talks with Up To Date host Steve Kraske

The Mission Project supports individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities by fostering community and building independence.

Adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities often find themselves without reasonable living options. People might remain in parents' homes, go to group homes or move into apartments, but these situations might prove isolating and unsustainable.

The Mission Project, a Kansas nonprofit, offers a different solution. It helps participants move into their own apartments and provides extensive resources after the move. From job coaching and apartment upkeep to social skills training and fun clubs, the group ensures people learn to live independently and interact with their community. They currently serve 32 participants but also connect with individuals in other regions and rural areas.

"I would not have any friends. I would not have anything to do," said participant Corey Graham of his life without The Mission Project. "I would just be sitting around all my life."

  • Corey Graham, Mission Project participant
  • Michelle Niedens, Mission Project board member and parent
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When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
Hannah Cole is an intern with KCUR's Up To Date.
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