Callan Peters’ #TreasureHouseStory: Making Strides as a Lego Master

Before coming to Treasure House, Callan Peters had a home in the small town of Payson, Ariz. and worked at the local casino. Callan was diagnosed with mild intellectual and developmental disabilities as a child, but was able to forge a life and live somewhat independently into his adult years with help from his mother. But, he needed a change of pace with additional support. At 41-years-old, he moved to Treasure House in August 2018, with encouragement from his family who knew our community would offer him the potential to lead his very best life.

With help from Life Coach Blake Muntz, Callan has put in work towards the path to true independence, community and purpose, and his progress over the last three years is substantial. “Today, Callan is a great friend, is respectful and doesn’t procrastinate as often. As an older resident, he leads by example like a big brother would,” said Blake. “Exposure to the casino environment really impressed up on him.” When Callan first arrived, he was sometimes unintentionally offensive and would require several prompts to get daily tasks completed. Since progressing at our active living community, we’ve come to value Callan for his wit, for his love of football and family, and for his appreciation of one very special hobby… Legos!

Part of each resident’s growth is identifying what motivates them. For Callan, when Lego sets are at stake, he becomes determined. Warmly referred to as Treasure House’s ‘Lego Master’, Callan has upwards of 50 fully-built Lego sets in his apartment, for which Blake has installed a floor to ceiling book case to showcase the work. “Callan has ADHD, like me, so building Legos is super therapeutic for us,” said Blake. “Legos require attention – you’re constantly manipulating things, looking at instructions, finding pieces, moving about. When I found out he loves Legos I knew we’d get along.”

On a monthly basis, Blake reports if Callan has been actively engaged in activities and commitments, and if he has been consistent with his individual responsibilities, such as doing dishes, doing laundry and taking out the trash. If he consistently does all of the activities that keep him on the path towards independence, Callan’s family rewards him at huge benchmarks with cool Lego sets. “If Callan could build them every day, he absolutely would,” said Blake. Right now, Callan is working towards earning the Harry Potter train set.

Callan’s affinity for Legos has bred interest from other residents, including his best friend Justin, a 21-year-old who has Autism Spectrum Disorder. Biologically, their age difference plays a factor in energy, but in general, it means very little to them. “They build Legos and bash on each other like two old men – it’s awesome!” said Blake. “That’s how they bond.”

It’s safe to say that Blake and Callan love each other, too. Many of the residents, including Callan, look up to Blake as a male figure. “Sometimes I’m referred to as a surrogate father or big brother. I hear my dad come out a lot when I’m talking to the residents, whether it be about sticking to their goals, staying consistent and prioritizing activities in their lives. Some of those conversations are tough,” said Blake.

Treasure House is blessed to be part of Callan’s world at this stage in his life. “He’s doing a great job, and we’re all so proud of him,” said Blake.