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Penn Foundation’s Wellspring Clubhouse Awarded $180,000 Grant from The Pew Charitable Trusts

Penn Foundation’s Wellspring Clubhouse, a voluntary social, educational, and vocational rehabilitation program for adults living with mental illness, has been awarded a grant in the amount of $180,000 over the next three years from The Pew Charitable Trusts. This grant will allow the Clubhouse to add a mobile outreach component to its services as well as enable the Clubhouse, and several of Penn Foundation’s other rehabilitation programs, to offer cognitive remediation to program participants.

“It is an honor to receive a grant from The Pew Charitable Trusts,” says Lu Mauro, M.Ed., CPRP, Director of Penn Foundation’s Wellspring Clubhouse. “This grant provides us with the amazing opportunity to serve more individuals by expanding our services directly into the community and to provide those we serve with the chance to strengthen and improve their cognitive functioning.”

Wellspring Clubhouse has hired a full-time staff person, who will begin in late June, to provide mobile psychiatric rehabilitation services to adults in the community living with mental illness. “Currently, most Wellspring Clubhouse services are provided on-site, but we will now be able to help people where they are,” explains Mauro. “For example, if someone needs assistance with living independently, we can help with budgeting, organizing, shopping, etc. directly in the person’s home where he/she can apply the skills and supports immediately. Many people prefer the one to one service in the community that this staff will be able to provide.”

The second part of the project focus – Cognitive Remediation - is a new initiative for Penn Foundation. The grant will allow Wellspring Clubhouse to purchase cognitive remediation software that can be used to work with people individually to improve their cognitive – thinking/understanding/remembering - functioning. “We know that individuals living with serious mental illness can experience specific cognitive challenges with memory, decision-making, problem-solving, understanding social cues, processing aural and written information, and motor/spatial issues,” says Mauro. “Recent research demonstrates that cognitive exercises designed to address deficits in these areas, along with rehabilitation, have shown excellent results in helping people to manage their lives more effectively and achieve goals in independent living, wellness, education, and employment.”

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