A New Harmony

Posted by Julie Erickson | December 19, 2017 | Services for Adults, Services for People with Disabilities

Zach has always had a love of the outdoors. In his free time, he can usually be found in his back yard, mowing the lawn or making sure his snow blower is working properly before the first snow.

But when Zach began working with his hourly support staff, Shane, he found a new love: music.

Shane is an hourly support staff with LSI’s Services for People with Disabilities. Each week, the duo works together to help Zach stay active in the community, practice his coping skills, and achieve his personal goals. Music therapy has become a major part of their time together.

“We play guitar quite a bit,” Shane says. “I think music therapy is very important. It just helps calm the soul down.”

During each session, Shane teaches Zach a few new chords or strumming patterns that Zach can practice on his own.

“I know when I’ve had a long, bad day at work, I get kind of angry rather quickly,” Zach says. “If I can, I go to my room and grab my guitar and start strumming some chords. I’m not much of a singer, but I’ve started putting some words with some of the jamming out I do.”

Seeing Zach’s new appreciation for guitar is just one way Shane is constantly inspired to come to work.

“A lot of motivation for hourly work is you only have a short amount of time with the individual, and it has to change their life,” he says. “When we can use our time to utilize music like Zach has, it can be a great coping skill, and it’s working for him.”

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