The Friendship Place provides adults with a safe and engaging day-time program to meet their mental, social, and healthcare needs while providing respite to caregivers
“Is it the right fit for my family?”
The Friendship Place is a program for adults with disabilities, age 22 and older. We are committed to providing the safest, most engaging program for those who need a place to meet others, participate in fun activities, and practice life skills. While we try to be as inclusive as possible, there is no behavior therapist on staff so we are not able to provide services to those who have behavior challenges.
Participants will find their days filled with music, crafts, dancing, light exercise, relaxation, socialization, entertainment, and opportunities to explore their individual interests. Planned days out in the community are optional and special guests will visit occasionally.
- The Friendship Place is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
- Participants can attend two to five days a week, depending on program space & availability
WHO WE SERVE
We welcome participants who…
- Can function in a 1:3 setting (one staff member to three participants)
- Are cognitively impaired and developmentally delayed
- Are non-verbal
- Use wheelchairs or walkers for mobility
- Require assistance toileting
Some of Our Participants’ Diagnoses: Autism, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Learning Disabilities, Brain Injury, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Spina Bifida
Interested families should submit an interest form or email the Director. We can help you determine what type of support your family member needs and if The Friendship Place is the right fit.
MEET THE DIRECTOR
“We understand that caregivers worry as they and their children age. We are here for you.”
Pedro Rodriguez, Director — Pedro Rodriguez and his family moved from New York to Minneola, Florida in 2004. Pedro has been married to his high-school sweetheart for 27 years and they have 3 adult sons, including a son with developmental disabilities. Their family enjoys fostering and rehabilitating shelter animals and attending church at Family Christian Center.
His first year in Minneola, Pedro began volunteering for the Miracle League of South Lake, and that’s where his passion for the special needs community began. Pedro has been coaching children and adults with disabilities in the sport of baseball since then and, despite being a native New Yorker and diehard Yankee fan, he has tolerated wearing a Red Sox team uniform, laughing it off saying, “anything for my players”.
For over 29 years, Pedro worked as a professional truck driver. In 2020, he felt called by God to change his career path and began working as a Direct Support Professional for adults with developmental disabilities. In 2022, Pedro was highly recommended and approached to become the Director of The Friendship Place for his optimistic mindset and determination to make a difference for those with disabilities.
Pedro’s goal is to aid the special needs community to attain their highest level of skills, purpose, and independence. He hopes to achieve this through an ongoing commitment to quality services, advocacy, and family partnership through The Friendship Place at The Central Florida Dreamplex.
Complete the Form Below
We will reach out to you with more information, to answer your questions, and to schedule a tour.
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