NOBLESVILLE — A Noblesville non-profit is working to enrich the lives of young adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities.
Same As U opened in January 2020 and its goal is to provide an education and sense of community for adults with disabilities.
“I like science and math and I like to read. Reading is my hobby,” student Grace Burke said. “My favorite part is being here and seeing all my college friends.”
The non-profit was founded by Jennifer Sell and Sara MacGregor. They both have children with Down syndrome and wanted them to have a place to continue learning after they age out of the public school system.
“They're not done after high school," MacGregor said. "They want to go to college and they want to do what their peers do."
“They had this full schedule when they were in school," Sell said. "They participated in sports, they participated in youth clubs but a lot of that is geared toward that high school kid. So now they are a young adult and a lot of them have way too much time at home on the couch and they're losing those skills that they worked so hard to learn throughout the school years."
Students are currently doing two days per week in the classroom. The rest of their lessons are online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sell said the need and demand for programming like this is out there though. They started with six students and in just one year have grown to now serve 26 students.
“It is a special place to go to college at and I just love it so much," Burke said. "I started in August and I like it and I'm so grateful to be here."
“The students, although their lives are very different, they have the same desires and the same wants as anyone else, disability or not, they deserve to have a bountiful life and so that's what we're providing for them," Sell said.
You can learn more about Same As U by visiting their website.