Then it was brother
Moreau is not only their barber, she's also responsible for all of her brothers' daily needs.
Since their mother,
"I promised my mother I would take care of them," Moreau said.
Some social-service experts believe more families could benefit from AFC if they knew about it.
"(AFC) is one of the best-kept secrets for those who qualify," said
James and Jeremy have autism, and are among the 13,596 disabled adults and frail elderly in
More than 5,000 of those receiving services through AFC are over the age of 60, according to the
MassHealth, the state's insurance program, runs AFC.
State and federal Medicaid dollars fund the program, and the goal is to help people remain at home, with support, rather than moving into an institutional setting, such as a nursing home.
To get services, one must be at least 16 years old; unable to live alone because of a medical, physical, cognitive or mental condition; and require help with daily tasks, such as preparing meals and bathing.
Those needing full-time skilled nursing care aren't eligible.
Caregivers can live with those they look after, or house them. A spouse or legal guardian can't serve in the role.
Caregivers are paid approximately
James and Jeremy were each diagnosed with autism when they were young children. Jeremy's diagnosis included "slight retardation," according to Moreau.
Their personalities are on the opposite ends of the spectrum. Jeremy is quiet and mostly agreeable, but needs a lot of help with tasks that require him to use his hands. James is more talkative, but has "high anxiety," according to Moreau.
James also enjoys teasing his sister, as he showed off an old speeding ticket.
"(The ticket) was only a warning," Moreau said with a smile.
Moreau gets a break for a few hours on weekdays while her brothers attend a day program in
Her goal is to get a job working with disabled adults, and once she's employed, she said it won't stop her from caring for her brothers. She said her wife,
Moreau shed light on why she promised her mother she would look after James and Jeremy.
"My mom was scared her sons would be going to a group home, and not be taken care of properly," Moreau said.
After Moreau finished the haircuts, James appeared holding a jigsaw puzzle featuring characters from "The
"We get along with each other -- sometimes," James said.
"They make me feel younger," Moreau said of her brothers. "We have a lot of fun."
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