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New home to serve people aging with developmental disabilities

Ashley Hirtzel

Baker Victory Services with the Alzheimer’s Association of Western New York opened a new residential care facility for people with developmental disabilities diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or age-related dementia.

The Memory House Residential Facility in Amherst will serve six residents. The ranch-style home features six beds, a kitchen, several common living areas, and a handicap-accessible bathroom. CEO of Baker Victory Services Terese Scofidio says the home was completely renovated and retrofitted with a wheel-chair ramp, special alarms, safety swipe cards for staff, and a secure backyard for tenants to enjoy.

“Everybody’s house should fit them. It doesn’t matter their age or their level of ability and this affords them the ability to live like their family does. It meets their needs, they’re together as a family, they all get along, and we’re able to provide some provided some added support and staff…So, everyone can get their needs met and live in a beautiful wonderful neighborhood,” said Scofidio.

Credit Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO
President of Baker Victory Services Msgr. Paul Burkard blesses the new the Memory House Residential Facility in Amherst.

According to BVS, preliminary research has shown that people with developmental disabilities experience age-related memory issues, including Alzhemier’s and dementia up to 20 years earlier than the general population. Scofidio says she hopes the new facility will help fill a need within the population of people aging with developmental disabilities.

“I hope as a community we can see more of these ‘Memory Care’ houses open. There is a tremendous need not only for the ‘Memory Care’ houses, but for housing for individuals with disabilities locally and throughout New York State. There are significant waiting lists. As a society we need to address the needs of these individuals,” said Scofidio.

The home will be staffed 24 hours a day by two BVS Care Professionals. Scofidio says she believes the house will maintain residents’ safety and independence, while allowing them to live a longer, happier life.