At the Dayle McIntosh Center, the Youth Transition Program is called DMC Youth Connect. It is a program for youth with disabilities, who want to learn new things, build personal skills, and have fun on the weekend with other young people.
Young people with disabilities, ages 14 to 24, and who live in Orange County are eligible to be participants in the DMC Youth Connect Program.
For more information about DMC Youth Connect call 714.621.3300 or complete the online form.
Potential consumers are referred to the DMC Youth Connect Program by a variety of sources such as special education teachers, case managers from Regional Center, other disability-based organizations, healthcare personnel, family members, and friends. Youth can also decide to refer themselves.
What Happens in the DMC Youth Connect Program?
Youth become part of the DMC Youth Connect program through an intake process. If the young person is under the age of 18, a parent or guardian must be part of the intake interview.
Youth Program staff and the youth, which is called a consumer, work together to develop their goals and/or an independent living plan. The intake also goes over activities, target dates, and desired outcomes. This helps to structure the youth’s involvement in the DMC Youth Connect program.
The purpose of the DMC Youth Connect program is to assist youth with transitioning from public school to young adult-life. The program also provides youth with opportunities for participating in social and recreational activities, making friends, and mentoring by successful adults, who are individuals with disabilities.
Services provided through the DMC Youth Connect Program occur in a group setting. Groups are scheduled on the first Friday of each month in Mission Viejo and on the second, third and fourth Saturday of each month in Anaheim. Please note, this schedule is subject to change based on holidays, staff availability, and the COVID risk level for the County.
At least one Youth Summer Academy is held each year.
Our team of Youth Program staff are also available to present Independent Living (IL) training at sites such as special education classrooms. Some examples of IL training areas include:
Work Readiness Skills that will help youth get a better understanding of the things they need to get a job.
Safety: Becoming aware of, and using, emergency and prevention procedures for safety at home, in the community, and on the job.
Youth may continue in the DMC Youth Connect program until they “age out,” achieve the goals, move out of the area, or decide that they are no longer interested. After leaving the program, all participants are given an opportunity to complete a satisfaction survey to express their opinions about the usefulness of the youth program.
Program Success Story
A youth consumer achieved the goal of connecting to the groups on Saturdays via Zoom, with the assistance of the Youth Community Liaison. The consumer had trouble with getting connected and had not been able to join the youth groups since they started on Zoom. The appointment with the Youth Community Liaison helped the consumer understand how to find and access the link for the Zoom meeting. The consumer attended Live Out Loud successfully and continued to attend the youth groups via Zoom until the program resumed in-person in 2023.