Now more than ever, it is important for everyone to feel welcomed, nurtured and cared for – and therein lies the mission of Tyler’s Place.
The new facility, serving Gilbert and Chandler, hopes to bring together special needs teenagers and adults in a safe and engaging environment.
The staff offers a hands-on approach to daytime and after school activities geared toward those who are seeking a place of acceptance and fun.
Tyler’s Place founder Robert Anasgasti had the inspiration to bring this facility to life as his autistic son reached the teen years.
There was a lack in programs that were both age-appropriate and safe.
Anasgasti and his wife knew other parents who were also struggling with this dilemma and decided to start their own program, pulling from the firsthand knowledge they had gained through the years.
They began to speak to families who expressed a need for an adult program as well, so they expanded to offer a range of programs for both teens and adults.
“We always love to have fun and strive to keep a busy schedule,” Anasgasti said. “Each day we have a different ‘special’ planned including music, art, pet therapy, physical fitness and culinary.
“We make learning life skills fun and engaging by allowing our experienced staff to facilitate the interactions between members,” he continued. “This collaborative approach allows for a level of engagement that is most beneficial to those who struggle with developing a deeper social understanding.”
The feedback has been positive, with families touring the bright and cheerful facility on Queen Creek Road in Chandler and finding a fresh perspective Tyler’s Place is offering the special needs community.
Strangers have even stepped up to donate.
“Our facility feels like a home away from home,” Anagasti said. “We want to make sure our members feel comfortable and relaxed.
“It’s critical to reduce anxiety and stress in order to have successful days for many of our members so I wanted to make sure the setting provided a calming atmosphere. The members love playing ping pong and relaxing on the couch for our daily team meetings.”
Though it started as a place for teens, it now has a day program for adults.
Tyler’s Place opened last month with a slow and steady growth strategy to ensure comfort.
Amid COVID-19, Tyler’s Place has stepped up.
“Due to the risks associated with COVID-19, we have adopted several procedures that are different,” Anagasti said, city a daily intake health questionnaire, regular temperature checks and a reduced capacity from 24 to 12.
“We also encourage mask wearing, extra hand washing and have a rigorous daily sanitizing routine,” he said.
Tyler’s Place embraces improving the quality of life for special needs members.
It isn’t just about having fun – it’s about building critical life skills so these individuals can become the best versions of themselves.
“We chose the Gilbert/Chandler community because it is home to us and the only home our children have ever known,” Anagasti said. “It is here where we raise a son with autism and here where we have received all the love and support that has helped us provide the best environment for him to flourish.”
To arrange a tour of Tyler’s Place, contact the center at 480-794-9984 or visit their website and complete the interest form at tylersplaceaz.org.