theadanews.com - Ada, Oklahoma

Local News

February 10, 2009

About McCall's Chapel

McCall’s Chapel is a facility for mentally challenged adults. The facility was founded by Allen School Teacher Phela Bost who wanted a school for mentally challenged children. It was originally built in Allen before it was relocated to it’s present location in 1975.

“McCall’s was actually founded in 1954 and it only served children,” said Honeyman. “It was a school. It was a licensed school at that time. We’re not a licensed school any longer and we don’t take anyone under the age of 18 now.”

Honeyman said it was before education for mentally challenged children became mandatory in public schools.

“It evolved from a day school to a residential school where the children actually came to live,” Honeyman said.

“When the federal government mandated public education for the mentally retarded there was no need for a licensed school, so it became a residential facility for the adult mentally retarded.

“We have some individuals who actually went to the school back in the 50s and still live here today,” she continued.

The residents are not just from Oklahoma with one even hailing from New York. The residents live in houses known as cottages with a home supervisor and several shift staff for each cottage providing 24- hour care.

“Each cottage has a kitchen and a laundry,” Honeyman said. “The residents that live in the cottages buy their groceries each week and help prepare the meals and do their own laundry.”

Honeyman said many of the 144 residents who live in the cottages are required to work each day.

“The majority of them work in our shelter workshop that we have on campus,” Honeyman said.

“Some have jobs in the community.”

Honeyman said they are trying keep life as normal as possible for their clients.

“We try to recreate the normal rhythm of life,” Honeyman said. “Normal people get up in the morning, get dressed and go to work, then they come home and they have their social life in the evening and we try to recreate that as much as possible. The normal rhythm of life.”

Honeyman said McCall’s ultimate goal is for residents to eventually live in the community.

“We hope that we can teach them the skills necessary to move into a less restrictive environment, either into one of our group homes or maybe have their own apartment or home in the community,” Honeyman said.

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