GAP Westside

Generating All Possibilities Westside (GAP Westside) is based out of West Los Angeles. The GAP Westside Program was developed in response to the community’s need for a program aimed at supporting young adults who are transitioning from high school to college and independent living and expanded to include young adults who are 5+ years out of high school and looking for support. This unique community based day-program is an authorized vendor of Westside Regional Center.

GAP Westside offers dynamic support to individuals with developmental disabilities who are on course to obtain employment. Through a variety of hands-on learning experiences, young adults successfully integrate into the community and manage responsibilities associated with independent living. Support includes on college campus help as well as internships and volunteer opportunities with community partners. There are also a variety of workshops and activities.

Service Locations

Santa Monica College
West Los Angeles College
Westwood Village

GAP Westside Workshops & Activities

Through a diverse selection of workshops, young adults can explore the many possibilities life has to offer them. Below are descriptions of many of the workshops and activities.

Acting Workshop

The GAP acting specialist is a well versed actor straight out of Hollywood. He has done it all, from teaching classes to aspiring actors, improv lessons, character analysis and voice acting interpretation. Young adults enjoy creating original cartoons including original animations and voice overs.

Art & Art Shows

The GAP art workshops explore different art mediums and styles, from watercoloring, abstract, dada, surreal and blind contours to adult coloring and more relaxed, therapeutic realms. Young adults are encouraged to learn new styles and aspects of art, whether they possess the skills of a novice or are more accomplished in their works.

Many of our talented artists showcase their work for fundraisers, art galleries, and community art fairs. GAP help the artistically inclined develop their portfolios for sale and promotion.

Computer Literacy/ Programming/ Web Design/ Digital Art

GAP helps young adults transition into the digital age to garner job skills and facilitate creative interests. Depending on their abilities, GAP members gain digital literacy from basic computer skills to complex programming. Advanced topics include: Program a video game using SCRATCH, developing a choose your own adventure story using TWINE, creating 8-bit digital artwork, designing your own website, scheduling using digital calendars, budgeting for independence, and more.

Creative Writing

Creative writing workshops provoke creativity, reflection and contemplation.The workshop also promotes self-advocate and self-expression. Projects promote both literal and lateral thinking.

Community Garden

Every Wednesday, a group of young adults accompany the GAP horticulturalist to an urban garden where they learn the process of sowing seeds, planting seedlings, thinning out crops, correct watering methods, and of course, how to harvest organic vegetables. This weekly activity is not only a great experience to understand the labor that goes into producing the fruits and vegetables, but also the activity itself is incredibly meditative and therapeutic.

Drivers Education

GAP helps young adults learn important driver’s safety information. With the help of various online tools, and an app called Drive Fit, eligible young adults are prepared for success in the world of self-transportation and driver awareness.

Farm to Fork

GAP takes the Community Garden one set further with the “Farm to Table” program, which blends the understanding of how our organic vegetables are produced into learning recipes and cooking techniques for the harvested produce. GAP members can benefit greatly from the knowledge and personal observation of why it is important to eat green and live well. Young adults learn to cook for themselves, and also go into the community and prepare meals for people.

Film Class

Hosted by a UCLA Film Teacher, GAP members can enjoy a class specially designed for the GAP program. This class helps young adults analyze various films and dissect movie plots, themes, character arcs, settings, narratives, morals, and styles such as Nonlinear, Surreal Comedy, Rotoscoping, Film Noir, Documentary & Biopics.

Japanese/Manga Translating Workshop

Hosted by a Japanese translator, this class consists of activities to help interested young adults master Japanese. The program specialist uses several cutting edge techniques and has worked on several movies such as Kill Bill Volume 1 & 2.

Lynda.com Workshop

Continuing education is valued at GAP and with the help of a specialist, GAP offers this workshop to help young adults champion skills unique to their goals. Lynda.com is the leading online learning company that provides classes for business, software, technology, language and creative skills to help individuals achieve personal and professional goals.

Music Theory and Comprehension

Whether it’s examining a song instrumentally or diving into the raw emotion of an artist’s songwriting, GAP takes music understanding to new heights in our music theory workshops. Not only is this an activity rooted in learning about music history, composition, and the intricate songwriting process, but also works to provide young adults with the opportunity to learn about themselves through introspection and each other through sharing of experience.

Physical Education

From soccer to basketball, baseball and more, physical education promotes team building skills and healthy lifestyles. The physical education workshops encourage participation and education. Young adults learn how to communicate as a team, learn the rules of the sport and most of all to enjoy themselves. GAP also volunteered for the Special Olympic World Games at UCLA to help support our community and feel a sense of connectivity.

Résumé Building

Young adults at the GAP program build their resume through social enterprise, community enrichment and volunteer opportunities. Young adults choose what they enjoy, and GAP works to provide opportunities that may strengthen their resume. Young adults are constantly updating and revising their resumes for the preparation of a bright vocational future.

Science

Encouraging Critical thinking skills and self-discovery through experimentation have been the main focus for our engaging science series. Young adults learn and are entertained at the same time when investigating a variety of scientific phenomena. Through fun science based activities, young adults strengthen critical thinking processes and problem solving skills.

Script Reading

In this activity, young adults get multifaceted exposure to the inner workings of screenplay writing, adaptation, table reading, character development, stage direction, voice over, and more. Outside of the analysis of these industry based aspects, young adults also receive opportunities to grow academically and socially in areas such as teamwork, reading comprehension, patience and listening skills.

Vocational Opportunities

GAP Westside actively volunteers with several programs within the Westwood community. Participating GAP members have served hundreds of hours of community service, are able to be boost their resumes and can qualify for community service scholarships. Some include…

Meals on Wheels

So far the GAP volunteers have delivered over 15,000 meals to seniors in their community. GAP volunteers learn how to use maps to navigate routes through the local area, give directions to drivers, systematically package deliveries, and interact with the recipients.

Strindberg Laboratory

The Strindberg Laboratory focuses on creating professional theater productions with GAP actors. This partnership builds a creative dialogue and relationship with communities and bring local communities together. GAP actors developed a production called “Daroca’s Curious Journey” and tour around the city.

Donate to support this program

Salvation Army

GAP volunteers assist at a nearby facility in their preschool classrooms and in the admin the office. GAP volunteers perform administrative duties such as typing newsletters, setting up their weekly and monthly calendars, organizing, making copies for administration and teachers, and greeting families. In the classroom, GAP volunteers engage in literacy activities, dramatic play and help the children build on their gross and fine motor skills.

We Rock the Spectrum

We Rock the Spectrum, is a gym for all children but specializes in the needs of children with special needs. GAP members teach new kids how to use the equipment, they keep the environment safe and clean, and encourage learning through play. GAP members are also involved in the WE ROCK SOCIAL SKILLS PROGRAM (WRSSP). GAP members conduct an art class every Tuesday for an hour in the morning and the afternoon.

General Info

Hours of Operation: 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday

Main Location: Westwood Village
Regional Center Vendor #PW5976

For further information or to arrange a visit please contact:
Sonni Bendetson at [email protected] and 323-605-4171