Organization for adults with intellectual disabilities opening new building in Bluffton

Organization for adults with intellectual disabilities opening new building in Bluffton

BLUFFTON, S.C. (WTOC) - For more than 20 years, Programs for Exceptional People has been located on Hilton Head Island.

Right now, PEP serves 74 adults with intellectual disabilities in Beaufort and Jasper counties. The focus of the program is to promote independence, social interaction, and employment opportunities for these adults.

Those with PEP say 72 percent of their current participants live off Hilton Head Island, so they've been looking for a newer and bigger home for quite some time.

They say this new space will allow them to serve even more adults with disabilities and serve those areas which are currently growing like Bluffton and Hardeeville.

PEP offers employment opportunities for these adults in several different ways, including ceramics.

There is a store located inside the new PEP building. The store includes all types of ceramics, you can buy ornaments, dishes, bowls, and other pieces. And they are made by the adults from the program.

For several years now, PEP has been able to teach their participants about ceramics.

The participants can then assist with the production of the ceramics or help run the ceramics shop and get paid for their work.

PEP says other participants go to work at various businesses in Bluffton and Hilton Head Island. And although work may be involved, they always find some time to play.

The program also offers transportation for those who live as far away as Lady's Island.

They say they're excited about the new building because it's big enough for them to house all their activities and programs into one location.

"I mean this is such an improvement. We own the entire 15,000 square foot building. But we have three tenants and we are left with about 10,000 square feet,” PEP Community Relations Coordinator Taylor Sullivan.

When the program was on Hilton Head Island, they had to keep up with three different buildings.

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