Meet Lisa

How often do you meet someone who loves their job so much that they never want to retire? Lisa is the perfect example of this rare personality.

Happily employed at the Morris County Library in Whippany since 1988, Lisa is the first smiling face to greet customers when she unlocks the door each morning. She also brings in borrowed items from the drop-off box, inspects returned CDs and has various other responsibilities that she finds fulfilling.

Although she found joy in her career, Lisa used to come home from work and live a reclusive lifestyle. She often watched TV and seldom reached out to friends for social interaction. That all changed in 2014 after moving to Rose House’s independent living apartments.

“Lisa has blossomed and is much more outgoing ever since living there,” her mother Ginny explained. “Her father and I were shocked when we went to a Rose House event and she was dancing away with everybody. Lisa is now more comfortable around people and has become quite the social butterfly. Before she wanted to be alone, but now she likes being in the spotlight.”

Although Lisa has come out of her shell and enjoys group activities with her fellow residents, she still appreciates her peace and quiet for personal activities, especially puzzle books, jigsaw puzzles, coloring and playing video games. In addition, social media has also given Lisa the freedom to be outgoing while enjoying the comforts of home. She is known as Rose House’s cheerleader, always responding to our Facebook posts with supportive comments.


Meet Jenny

Jenny has a gift for communicating with children. She has worked at daycare centers since graduating high school, and was always adored by the preschool-aged kids that she provided care for. But who would take care of Jenny when her parents could no longer do so?

Rose House assured Jenny’s parents that she would receive the right amount of attention and learn the necessary skills to live independently.

“I certainly felt the Rose House was the best we could offer Jenny,” her mother Carol said. “It’s a safe home where she is around people who understand her and knows what she needs. Jenny is fully independent now and loves to clean her apartment and cook for herself.”

Carol asserted that Jenny has always liked performing tasks on her own, and Rose House gives her an extra boost of confidence. For example, Jenny worked at a Morristown daycare center for 21 years until it closed. After seven months of working with an employment agency and having no luck, she decided to search for a job herself on Through her own hard work and dedication, Jenny landed a career as a teacher assistant at a daycare center in Parsippany, where she has been ever since!

When Jenny is not mentoring kids, she loves to watch Hallmark movies and play video games. She is also involved in crafting with her mother and selling their items each year at a local church’s fundraiser — a tradition that Jenny’s grandmother started with Carol long ago and is still going strong.


Meet Rachel

Rachel is a living legend as Rose House’s star athlete. She has competed in the Special Olympics and other sporting events for track and field, gymnastics and ice skating, earning multiple gold medals. This includes a gold medal for being the only competitor to perform a handspring vault in 1999 at the Special Olympics World Games in Raleigh Durham North Carolina.

Watch a video of Rachel at the 2011 Essex Special Skaters Spring Show >>

While Rachel’s supportive parents enabled her to make athletic dreams come true, she still needed help reaching the finish line of independent living. That’s where Rose House came in to play.

“We made sure she went to all her activities with Special Olympics, DAWN Center for Independent Living, Morris County Adaptive Recreational Program (McARP) and others but she certainly has the opportunity to be more independent now while living at The Rose House,” said Rachel’s mother Vicki. “They’ve helped with transportation, decision making, doing her own laundry and taking responsibility for herself with food shopping, preparation of meals, and more!”

Rachel is currently keeping her athletic skills sharp by swimming up to 30 laps per session. She’s looking forward to competing in the 2023 Special Olympics in Bocce.

Aside from being sporty, Rachel has an interest in Art, taking virtual painting classes right from her apartment. She’s social and enjoys music and dancing at parties. In addition, Rachel also loves animals. She enjoys pet-sitting her brother’s dog and takes horseback riding lessons. In fact, Rachel recently won two awards, first place and participation, from the Schooling Show at Seaton Hackney Stables! (pictured above) She loves spending time with her family at home and on outings as well as game night and weekend activities with her friends at Rose House.

Although Rachel knows how to have fun, she’s also a hard worker. She recently has packaged for Tiffany’s and has helped wiring for Cablevision at Employment Horizons in Cedar Knolls.


Meet Billy

Billy is Rose House’s resident DJ, providing entertainment for the organization’s events. He also has a passion for dancing.

Prior to the Hanover Apartments, Billy was living in an apartment specially built for him in his parents’ home. He had his own bedroom, bathroom, office and everything else to make him comfortable. However, he was missing the most important feature: his feeling of independence.

Soon after moving to Rose House’s Hanover Apartments, his mother recognized a tremendous change in Billy. “I am so proud of what he has accomplished,” Michele said. “He takes great pride in keeping his apartment clean. He does so well with managing everyday life, which Rose House has encouraged through supervision.”

Billy stays busy working as an office clerk for MetLife. Some of his responsibilities include stocking shelves, making sure the coffee makers are stocked and keeping the conference room tidy.

When he’s not working or learning how to improve his DJ skills, Billy loves to visit family, including his niece and nephew in Connecticut. His greatest goal is learning how to fly on his own so he can visit Michele’s winter home in Florida.