Ridgeview Place is a completely private project. When a resident comes to Ridgeview, they must buy into the home. The buy-in brings more with it than just buying into the home. With the home buy in comes a quarter share in the business as well. The business generates significant income such that the purchase into the home can be paid back, which, if you look at it that way, makes Ridgeview essentially free.
Sure, there is work that is to be done with the business. It takes the efforts of both the residents and their families to keep it successful and producing income. Still, that is quite a deal. This means your family member’s lifestyle doesn’t depend on any aid or government programs, which do change and can go away, to thrive.
Look around. I don’t believe there is anything like it.
Ridgeview Place is a bunch of things. It is a home for special needs adults. It is an inclusive place, that invites interaction between the community and its resident owners. It is a place where residents experience and benefit from both home ownership and owning their own business. A unique style of Social Entrepreneurship weaves the residential and employment experience together in a very unique way.
It’s easy to be busy. Busy isn’t enough to assure a financially sustainable life. Most of the opportunities in our area for adults that are neurologically atypical involve menial work and menial reward. We simply rejected the premise that these hard working adults should be so limited.
Therefore, the business at Ridgeview had to make good sense as a profit making business, period. Busy work wouldn’t cut it; we sought actual, productive business, a profitable, commercial enterprise. That is an unusual requirement for businesses set up to benefit adults with special needs. But that is exactly the requirement that allows for pretty much unlimited opportunity for the resident owners at Ridgeview. The only limit on the opportunities, and incomes, of the owners at Ridgeview is the imagination and motivation of the people involved.
And yes, business is a team sport. The business has lots of things to do for the resident owners as well as their families and supporters. Of course, we chose an initial business that has a fun, social work environment. The work involves all skill levels, so we have things that people of all skill levels can be successful doing.
But it is entrepreneurial at its core. We identified a commercial opportunity and organized a venture to implement it. And, we will do that again and again as we grow.
It is truly a beautiful thing. Those who come to see it tell me there is nothing else like it. If a group of social entrepreneurs is the type of team you want to be involved with, don’t hesitate to check it out. We only have a few spots available.