Chester Spring, PA – 22-year-old woman with autism, Stephanie Kier, moved into her own house two weeks ago. The house was purchased by her mother Marie Louise Ludwig last year, through a non-profit she founded five years ago called Stephanie’s House. It went through $60,000 worth of renovations before the move in.
In addition to Kier, one of her caregivers, Gayle Eddy,65, moved in as well. In an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer Eddy described the blue two story house as:
“It’s just-home. And [Kier] is happy. That’s what’s important.”
Kier’s mother was inspired to buy a home for her daughter by her former mentor Evelyn Dudziec who founded and bought Katie’s Home for her own daughter to move into in 2007. Dudziec couldn’t be happier for Ludwig.
“She’s a mom who is determined to do the best she can for her daughter, and who’s not willing to settle for anything else.”
In Kier’s home she is given as much freedom as possible, while also learning many life skills. She puts away dishes and laundry, and also is learning to tackle washing the laundry as well. When she’s not getting the lay of her new land she and her other caregivers, who work on rotating shifts, go out to movies, restaurants, and to the library to stoke Kier’s love for reading.
Early next year Kier’s mother is planning to open up Stephenie’s house so other parents can meet up and talk future housing options for their children on the spectrum. Ludwig also plans to start looking in January for other women with autism to move in with her daughter.
There will be a fundraiser/ housewarming party on Nov.1 at Freedoms at Valley Forge.
The original article by Michaelle Bond on the Philly.Com website can be read here
More information about Stephanie’s House can be found on their website here
Contributed by Audrey L. Hollingshead