August 11, 2011

State of Alabama
Press Release: Mental Health, Department of

Alabama Department of Mental Health Announces New Video

MONTGOMERY – The Alabama Department of Mental Health announces a new video, "A Day with Charity." This fifteen-minute video is a touching personal look into the home of a person with intellectual disabilities who has successfully transitioned from an institution to a life in the community. The video was recently added to the department’s new YouTube channel. It can be found by visiting http://www.youtube.com/user/ALMentalHealth.

Charity Sutton is one of more than 6,000 individuals with intellectual disabilities living successfully in Alabama communities. She has Rett syndrome, which is a disorder that causes problems in brain functions that are responsible for cognitive, sensory, emotional, motor and autonomic function. Charity’s parents tried their best to keep her at home, but her needs were extensive and more than they could handle so they felt placing her in residential care at W.D. Partlow Developmental center would be best at that time. After spending five years there, Charity’s parents were able to get the in-home and external supports they needed to bring her home…to live a life in her community.

The video takes the viewer inside a typical day in the life of Charity and includes interviews with her team of caregivers. According to her parents, the social, recreational and educational activities Charity participates in these days would not have been possible inside an institution. They are realistic in relaying that things are not always perfect, but are enthusiastic about the joy Charity gets from real involvement with her family, friends and neighbors that would not have been possible otherwise.

"A Day with Charity" is ultimately an anti-stigma tool, showing that people with intellectual disabilities can and do live more productive and fulfilling lives in their communities.

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  • For more information, visit http://mh.alabama.gov
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