Tricia Cramer is constantly working toward her goal, which is to become as independent as possible. She works hard at being responsible and is supported enthusiastically by her family members, who are proud of the successes she has achieved so far. She is able to meet challenges in her life with a positive attitude.
Tricia’s living situation is unique because she shares her own home with other clients and group home workers. The home is the one she lived in with her family before the decision to move to a group home environment.
Tricia’s weekdays are filled with work and various social activities. She works at Tony Roma’s Restaurant and she says she likes the fact that she doesn’t have to pack a lunch because it is provided at the restaurant. She helps to make the brownies and apple crisp as well as helping to prepare the chicken. Tricia also works at the McLauren Baptist Church, where she dusts the toys and folds the bulletins. On Fridays Tricia works at the Royal Bank. She wears a nametag and stamps envelopes at her own desk. Tricia also spends time working at New Generations, the Association’s used clothing store.
Tricia graduated in 1993 from Beaverlodge High School. Her escort for the graduation ceremony was Paul Stranaghan, a friend and also a client at the Association. School is still a part of Tricia’s life, as she regularly attends the Lion’s Reading Network. She says she enjoys the school sessions and her homework includes reading, writing and math.
Weekends are a time to relax. Debbie Aasen, one of Tricia’s former group home workers, used to tease her about getting up at 6:30 am to make coffee. Debbie says Tricia loves to please and is very helpful with chores in the group home. "Tricia could run the place," says Debbie, "She's very routinized and organized. She is learning all the time to be responsible."
Tricia’s parents, Charlie and Marilyn Cramer, have written about their experiences raising Tricia . Charlie is currently on the Board of Directors for the Association. In the 1990s, Marilyn published “Special Friends”, a magazine about people with special needs.