February 9, 2017

When it is not enough...

Recently five families shared their stories with me. I'm not sure how often you as a family member or person may feel blockaded by the answers you receive when you are trying to improve your situation.  I thought "when it is not enough" would be a great way to convey some thoughts from these conversations.  
When it's not enough: 
  • Please don't end the supports planning meeting with the same plan and level of support as the year before
  • Please recognize the need.  Please DO ask me what would really help. Jot down some notes.  Tell me you'll follow up. 
    • Look past my struggle or dissatisfaction to consider if there are other strategies to assist our family or me (self-advocate) with or without additional funding.  
    • Ask for advice/guidance from others if you need it. 
    • Follow up and visit me at home or at a convenient location for both of us to share one or more possible solutions.
Leo V. Sarkissian 
Executive Director

50% More!
Getting 50% more is always a great thing, especially when you can increase your gift to Home for the Future Capital Campaign.
As we reported last week, three long-time supporters of The Arc of Massachusetts presented us with a great challenge and even better opportunity:   raise  at least $200,000 in new gifts and commitments for the Home for the Future Capital Campaign and receive an additional gift of $100,000!
You can essentially increase your gift by 50%, when you give during the challenge window; all commitments must be received by June 30, 2017 in order to count toward the challenge.
Don't you want to do more?
Support the Home for the Future Campaign today! We need your help to meet the challenge. Please visit arcmass.org/campaign to learn more about the new headquarters building and to donate. 

GOVERNMENT AFFAIRSgovernmentaffairs
GA Committee In Action
(L to R) Kathy Kelly, Dianne Glennon, Cathe Carpenter
This week six members of The Arc's Government Affairs (GA) Committee and volunteers from Mass Advocates Standing Strong held a one day "drop off" at the State House. They visited all 200 members of the State Senate (40) and House of Representatives (160) and gave them The Arc's "FY'18 Budget Ask" and an invitation to the 39th Annual Legislative Reception. Hosted by the Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Council and The Arc of Massachusetts, the reception will be held on March 27 at 10:30 in the State House Great Hall. 
A complete review of The Arc's "FY'18 Budget Ask" sheet can be found here.   Special thanks to the GA Committee, including Leo Sarkissian, Maura Sullivan, Cathe Carpenter, Kathy Kelly, Brian Clark, and Dianne Glennon for visiting every office and speaking with legislators and aides.
The 2018 Budget and Turning 22 
Last week, The Arc's Operation House Call (OHC) rolled out a training program for Simmons College School of Nursing and Health Sciences. 120 graduate students are enrolled in the program.

The students had an evening lecture followed by a Q&A session involving a four-person panel. The panel included a self advocate, a physician, a nurse, and a parent, All panelists have participated in OHC in the past.

This program with Simmons is unique for OHC because it combines experiential learning with an inter-professional component. A nursing student, physical therapy student, and nutrition student are matched to ensure interdisciplinary learning. Then the students visit OHC families in Massachusetts who have a child or an adult living at home with autism or other intellectual and developmental disabilities. All students then write about this experience in an OHC online forum, reflecting on the program's learning objectives and their personal growth.
We look forward to continuing to provide education and exposure for medical students and graduate-level health professionals across Massachusetts.

If you want to learn more about OHC, please contact Maura Sullivan.

In 2017 ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) accounts will be available in Massachusetts!
Thursday, February 16, 7:00-8:00 PM
In 2014, President Obama signed the Achieving a Better Life Experience, or ABLE Act, into law. The ABLE Act provides a vehicle for families to save for the future care of their child with special needs through an account made available by similar legislation for 529 college savings plans. People with disabilities and family members can open special savings accounts in which they can save money without jeopardizing their government benefits. Ohio, Florida, Nebraska and Tennessee have all launched ABLE accounts, based on the 2014 ABLE Act and Massachusetts will join them in 2017. Funds can be used to pay for education, health care, transportation, housing and other expenses. Learn how the ABLE account can help support your loved ones.
Frederick M. Misilo, Jr. Esq.
Fletcher Tilton
John Nadworny  CFP Special Needs Financial Planning
  Presenters Frederick M. Misilo, Jr. Esq. from Fletcher Tilton and John Nadworny, CFP Special Needs Financial Planning a practice of Shepherd Financial Partners .
Did you miss Monday's webinar presented by Leo Sarkissian 
on the FY18 Budget and Turning 22?

 It is not too late! You can view the recorded webinar using The Arc's on demand feature. 
To view click here.  

Register For Our 39th Annual Legislative Reception!
Presented by The Arc of Massachusetts and MDDC

Monday, March 27, 2017
10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Great Hall, State House

Sprout Film Festival
Sunday, Feb. 26
4:30-6:30 pm
The Eric Carle Museum

Tickets $10

Vinfen's Moving Images Film Festival
Saturday, April 1
9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Joseph B. Conference Center at Harvard Medical School

2-Day Sibshops Conference
Thursday, May 4 through Friday, May 5
8 am -4 pm
JCC in Newton

SPONSOR SPOTLIGHTsponsorspotlight

The Arc of Massachusetts | 781-891-6270 |   arcmass.org