Services for Residents
Family & Graduate Housing offers a variety of services to residents. Please stop by the office to ask general questions, obtain leasing information, reserve a programming space, register for a program, pick up a loaner key, get a newsletter, ask billing questions, or fax a document to a local or toll-free number. Additionally, you can check out equipment for temporary use, such as a car battery jump kit, moving carts, a scale to weigh your luggage, and an air pump for bicycle tires.
Community Aide Staff and Complex Coordinator
At Family & Graduate Housing, we provide live-in staff members who reside in the community and are available to assist you in many ways. Your Community Aide can assist you by providing information about services and programs offered by Family & Graduate Housing, the local community, the Family Housing Council, and other University organizations. Community Aides also plan many popular activities and can help you by answering questions about different cultures and traditions. There are Community Aides assigned to each apartment complex: two at Ashton Woods, two at Goodwin-Green and thirteen at Orchard Downs.
The Complex Coordinator for University Apartments provides supervision to the Community Aide staff and provides on-call assistance when the Family & Graduate Housing office is closed. An on-call staff member can be reached at 217-649-7705 for assistance after 5:00 p.m. on weekdays, on weekends and on holidays. If you have an emergency, lose your keys, or need other assistance, please call. Please feel free to contact the on-call staff member if you have a problem or a question. To find specific contact information regarding your Community Aide or the Complex Coordinator, contact the Family & Graduate Housing office or visit www.housing.illinois.edu for a staff listing.
Ashton Woods Community Building
The Community Building (2221 S. First St.) is located at the entrance of the Ashton Woods apartment complex.This space serves as a gathering place for social programs, meetings, and educational classes sponsored by Family & Graduate Housing staff. Check our website or contact the Family & Graduate Housing office for details.
Orchard Downs Community Center
The Community Center, located at the south end of the Orchard Downs complex, is the site of many Family & Graduate Housing programs, including the Orchard Downs Pre-School and the after-school Kids’ Club Program. Residents may also reserve the Community Center for their own personal use. Many people use it for birthday parties, dinners, meetings, and other events. The Center also offers wireless access to the University Internet. This space may be reserved by visiting the Space Reservation System on the Housing website.
Learning Resource Center
The Learning Resource Center is located at 2044-A Orchard Street in Orchard Downs. This conference room setting is used for educational workshops, International Friendship Group, English classes, and the Family Housing Council Sewing Room. Many people use this space for birthday parties, dinners, meetings, and other events. This space may be reserved by visiting the Space Reservation System on the Housing website.
Family Resource Center
The Family Resource Center is located at 1834-A in Orchard Downs. It is available to all Family & Graduate Housing residents and offers information on a variety of topics that relate to families and their concerns. It also contains a lending library where residents can check out children’s books and resources on parenting, families, childcare, and women’s health.
Residents at Family & Graduate Housing can access the study room located at apartment 2102-104 in Orchard South by using their laundry room key. The Study Room is available at any time throughout the year for quiet study. We encourage residents to utilize this valuable space that directly supports student academic success. If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Multicultural Health Center
The MultiCultural Health Center (MCHC) delivers culturally sensitive illness prevention and health promotion services to the residents of the Family & Graduate Housing apartment communities. The center provides health information, education, insurance information, and referrals to residents. All Family & Graduate Housing residents may use this program. Those who do not have access to services provided by McKinley Health Center are especially encouraged to use the Multicultural Health Center. The MultiCultural Health Center is located at 2040-A Orchard Street. For more information, contact the Center at 217-265-6267 or or email MCHC@illinois.edu.
There is a lounge in the basement of 300 S. Goodwin that serves as a gathering place for social programs, meetings, and educational classes. Many residents enjoy using the lounge to watch television or read newspapers and magazines. In addition, there is a kitchen available for residents to use. You may reserve the lounge and kitchen by visiting the Space Reservation System on the Housing website. Many people use this space for birthday parties, dinners, meetings, and other events. In addition, this lounge offers wireless access to the University Internet. Check our website or contact the Family & Graduate Housing office for details.
Newsletters: “Neighborly News,” “Globe,” and “Access”
The “Neighborly News” is a monthly newsletter published by the Family & Graduate Housing staff especially for Orchard Downs residents. It contains current information that affects residents, such as items about upcoming maintenance, exciting monthly programs, community resources, health information, and news from the Family Housing Council. The Goodwin-Green “Globe” and Ashton Woods “Access” are monthly newsletters published for residents in these communities. The newsletters contain information about upcoming maintenance, monthly programming calendars, community events, and resources. All three apartment community newsletters are available on the the apartment pages on the University Housing website.
Orchard Downs Pre-School
Orchard Downs Pre-School offers structured educational activities to enhance the social, emotional, physical, and mental growth of children ages 3–5. Set in Orchard Downs with its unique blending of social and cultural backgrounds, the school provides a stimulating environment for the individual growth of each child. The program stresses educational play and social development. The school allows parents to share the child’s first learning experience by working once a week as a teacher assistant, if they choose, and by sharing responsibilities for school committees. The Pre-School operates as a part of University Housing with low monthly tuition rates and follows the University calendar.
Visit us at the Orchard Downs Pre-School, located in the Family & Graduate Housing Community Center, 510 W. George Huff Drive, Urbana. To register your child, call 217-333-3497 or contact the Family & Graduate Housing office at 217-333-5656. Registration forms are available at the school, the Family & Graduate Housing office, and online. All registration forms must be completed before children may attend. Health forms require a current physical exam, immunization records, and a TB skin test, even if the child has had a BCG vaccination.
Programs for All Ages
An exciting and vital part of community life in Family & Graduate Housing includes the many free activities and programs offered for residents of all ages. We enjoy offering these opportunities to you and your family and hope that you will have time to get involved. Hundreds of activities take place each year.
Kids Club After-School Program
At Orchard Downs, the Kids’ Club is our after-school program for children ages five through twelve years old. The program meets Monday through Friday from 3:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Community Center. The children participate in various activities such as crafts, games, sports, cooking, and field trips. Parents are always welcome to participate. Please see the “Neighborly News” for registration times and dates.
Junior Club After-School Program
Located at Orchard Downs, the Junior Club is our after-school program for pre-school children ages three through five years of age. The Junior Club program meets Monday through Friday from 3:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Community Center. The children participate in organized play activities that provide opportunities for fun and friendship. Registration is required with enrollment priority given to children enrolled in the full-day Orchard Downs Pre-School.
Parent-Child Playgroups provide support, educational resources, health information, and development activities to parents, expecting parents, and young children from birth to five years old. Children are welcome to attend our meetings with their parents. Playgroup is a good way to meet and share experiences with other parents, and to encourage development of their child’s social skills. Meeting times and days are promoted in the “Neighborly News” and on the Orchard Downs calendar.
Cooking Club is an enthusiastic group of cooks who attend this weekly cooking demonstration. Each week residents will share one of their favorite recipes. This program is a wonderful way to meet other residents and to sample and exchange recipes from around the world. Children are welcome to attend with parents.
A variety of workshops are offered each year such as winter preparedness, health education, tax preparation, English classes, and parenting classes. If there is a topic that is of particular interest to you, please contact the Family & Graduate Housing office, since it is possible that a workshop could be developed on that topic.
A wide variety of free social programs are available in the apartments. Cultural events celebrating the diversity of our residents are often the most popular activities we offer. We host an International Food Festival to showcase the food from the many cultures represented in our community, and also hold theme parties, bingo nights, music nights, celebration of cultural holidays, and informal gatherings for residents. Ashton Woods and Goodwin-Green apartment complexes offer regular Social Hours that provide residents with the opportunity to meet new people and socialize. Details are advertised in the newsletter for each apartment community. Annually, we celebrate the beginning of the academic year with a Fall Festival and the end of the year with the Final Fling. Both events provide food and entertainment for all residents and their families.
Each year, Family & Graduate Housing sponsors several bus trips to explore nearby cities, such as Chicago, St. Louis, or Indianapolis. The staff plans the trip and develops an itinerary. All residents and their dependents are welcome to participate. There are fees for some trips. Bus trips fill up quickly, so watch the newsletter for information about upcoming excursions and registration information.