green ribbon with text mental health awareness month
Dear Friends,

Many of us experience challenges with our mental health, whether we have a specific diagnosis of a mental illness or generally struggle with our thoughts, feelings or emotions on a day to day basis.

Since the start of the pandemic, mental health challenges have dramatically increased across our society, as we all have faced social isolation, changing pressures of family, school and social lives, changes in services and community resources, and changes in activities, to name a few. Also, many of us have had direct encounters with COVID-19, through experiencing the illness ourselves or the loss of a loved one.

The need for mental health awareness and support is at an all-time high. With the month of May being national Mental Health Awareness Month, we wanted to share with you some important resources and encourage you to seek support if you are experiencing mental health challenges.

For more information and support we encourage you to contact the following resources directly:

Additionally, many of our programs are designed to provide support, guidance and an opportunity to connect with others generally. We encourage you to consider joining us for one of our activities below or contact our office to find the service or program that's right for you.

As always, we are here to help you with any question, concern, or goal you may have. During the pandemic, our offices remain closed. We are working by phone, email, and video to serve your needs. We encourage you to reach out and of course welcome you at the events below.
Alex Gossage
Executive Director

Virtual Movie Club

Watch a movie, then chat with folks! Beat the stay home blues and join the CIL’s virtual movie club! How does it work? Each week, watch a planned movie on your own time, and then we get together virtually to talk about it and have some fun! It’s that easy! Movie club sessions include trivia, thought-provoking questions, and laughter.

Thursdays, 4-5 pm

Week of June 2: Marmaduke

RSVP: Anna at or 734-971-0277 x 17

Art Program
New: Now In Person and Online!

Now offering in-person art sessions! Join us for art in a relaxed social environment. Rotating through different media, we explore new materials and techniques in a guided manner. No previous experience is necessary. Whether joining us online from home or in person, there's no special equipment or supplies needed!

May: Artist series continues! Each session we will explore the work of a different artist and try out and learn from their own unique style.

Mondays, 12:30-2 pm
In Person: Guided Sessions

  • May 23: Installation collaboration by Jen Stark (cont'd)
  • May 30: Class on break
  • June 6: Class on break

Mondays, 2 pm - 4 pm
In Person: Open Studio

Work on your project from the guided session or join others to work on any art you are pursuing! You'll collaborate with our instructor and others pursuing their own art.

* Note no open studio May 30 and June 6. *

Tuesdays, 3-4:30 pm
Online: Guided Sessions

  • May 24: Found object sculpture by Yayoi Kusama
  • May 31: Abstractions by Kinda Khalidy

Thursdays, 1-2:30 pm
Online: Open Studio

Work on your project from the guided session or join others to work on any art you are pursuing! You'll collaborate with our instructor and others pursuing their own art.

Info and to receive weekly VAC email updates:

Also check out the art program website: Click here

Trivia Tuesdays!
Get silly, get goofy, most of all, put on your thinking cap!

Every Tuesday we get together to play trivia! Whether you like easy questions or the tough ones, join us for some Tuesday fun. We also talk about ideas, solutions, and problem-solving for whatever disability-related challenges you might be having. On Zoom! Participate online or by phone.

Tuesdays, 1:30-2:30 pm

RSVP: or 734-971-0277 x 17

Be Active at Home: Spirit Club Inclusive Fitness

Are you looking to stay active at home and connect with others? Our fitness club welcomes all abilities with three different adaptations of exercises all on one screen! Participants are welcome to do the workout as presented or modify it as they are comfortable.

Mondays and Wednesdays, 4-5 pm

Mon., May 23: Yoga
Weds., May 25: Marvel Story Time Fitness
Mon., May 30: Memorial Day No Class
Weds., June 1: Strength Fitness
Mon., June 6: Zumba
Weds., June 8: Sit & HIIT

Info: email or click here to register online.

SCI Virtual Meet Up

Living with a spinal cord injury can be challenging in many ways. Join us to connect with others with SCI, get help tackling your own needs, and provide help and advice to others. This group meets the second Tuesday of the month, 12 pm - 1:30 pm.

Tuesday, June 14, 12-1:30 pm

Info or RSVP: or 734-971-0277 x 55

Disability Community Action Lab (DCAL)

Care about important issues facing our community? Join us for DCAL, a collaborative group taking action on issues facing people with disabilities and providing support in making a difference. In this program, you will connect with others who care about similar issues and develop plans to make a difference.

The third Wednesday of every month, 12-1:30 pm
Next meeting: Wednesday, June 15
Topic: Advocacy and support for people with disabilities reentering society after incarceration


Also check out the DCAL website and sign up for the advocacy newsletter!

COVID-19 Info

Are you concerned about the current coronavirus situation? Are you feeling anxious, unsure, or do you need help figuring out how you should approach a certain situation? Give us a call for help sorting through any COVID-19 info. If you are feeling symptoms or sick, call your doctor's office.

Note: Several transportation providers are offering free rides to vaccines. Call us for help getting connected.

Contact: or 734-971-0277

Free Masks

The State of Michigan is giving away free N95 masks, which specially prevent the spread of the COVID-19 omicron virus more than regular masks. Masks are being given at local MDHHS offices, local health departments, and some community organizations. For a full list of locations to get a free mask, visit the State of Michigan website by clicking here or call the CIL for help finding information.

Free At-Home COVID-19 Tests

The federal government is providing at-home COVID-19 tests for free. To get the free COVID-19 tests delivered to you, visit this website by clicking here or call 800-232-0233.
Community Info
Career Exploration: The Information Technology (IT) Journey

Join Michigan Rehabilitation Services (MRS) for an informational session to discuss youth and young adult preparation for IT careers, hear from participant success stories, and learn about emerging IT fields.

Friday, June 3, 1 pm

For info or accommodations, contact

U-M Adaptive Sports & Fitness

Join the University of Michigan's adaptive sports, open to all community members on a drop-in basis at no cost. Masks and COVID vaccination required of participants. Must register 3 days in advance.

Wheelchair Softball and Wheelchair Football
U-M Adaptive Sports is exploring starting wheelchair softball and wheelchair football programs. If you're interested, please fill out this survey to share your availability to participate!

Wheelchair Tennis
Thursdays: 6:30-8:30 pm
* Note: Now outdoors at a new time! *
University of Michigan Varsity Tennis Center outdoor courts, 2250 S. State St, Ann Arbor
Equipment available upon advance request

Wheelchair Basketball
Wednesdays: 5:30-7:30 pm
* Note new summer schedule! *
University of Michigan North Campus Rec Building, 2375 Hubbard Rd., Ann Arbor

To register, click here.
To register for wheelchair basketball, click here.
To sign up for the mailing list, click here.

DanceAbility on Zoom

DanceAbility can be high-energy or slow and gentle, so come as you are to co-create dance in a diverse community. This class is for people with and without disabilities, with and without formal dance training. Cost: $0 - $200 depending on your ability to pay.

Info: Cara at

Livingston County Social Events with Special Ministries

Join Special Ministries for the following events:

Friday, May 20, 6:30 pm – Swimming at Howell Pool
Saturday, May 21, 11 am – Bowling at Howell E Drome
Monday, May 23, 6:30 pm – Story Time on Zoom
Wednesday, May 25, 6 pm – Game Night and Parent/Caregiver at 242 Church
Thursday, May 26, 6:30 pm – Movie Night on Zoom
Friday, May 27, 6:30 pm – 6" Sun Catcher Ceramic Studio
Tuesday, May 31, 6:30 pm – Painting at Sylvan Glen Clubhouse

To register, email or text 810-588-1909.

Call for Artists: Women with Disabilities

The Toledo Museum of Art is seeking women with disabilities to display their art. Preference will be given to artists from Ohio, NE Indiana, and SE Michigan. Artists of all ages and skill levels are encouraged to apply.
Entries due May 25 via this online form.


All Means All
Michigan Disability Artist Community

Michigan Arts Access is forming the All Means All group to bring artists with disabilities throughout the state of Michigan together to share their work, identify needs for support of their work, and bring attention to their work. Dancers, actors, musicians, story tellers, poets, puppeteers, film makers, and visual artists are welcome!

The second Friday and fourth Saturday of every month at 2:30 pm on Zoom.

Info: contact or visit

Your Input Needed: Healthcare Services

If you have a disability or are a senior, share your input about your experiences with healthcare services. This survey is conducted by the CIL and Michigan Medicine with support from the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation as part of a project to improve healthcare service delivery.

Your Input Needed: Disability and Employment

Do you have a visible physical and/or sensory disability and have you been employed for 6+ months? Researchers at the University of Toronto are seeking participants for a study about inclusive employment. Participation involves a one-hour virtual, confidential video interview. Participants will receive an honorarium.


Your Input Needed: Wheelchair Users and Vehicles

The University of Michigan is looking for wheelchair users to test accessibility and safety features of vehicles. You must be able to transfer out of your chair independently. Participants will be paid $40, and the testing session will take two hours.

Info: or 734-763-3463

Your Input Needed: Wheelchair Use

The University of Michigan is conducting a research study about the use of manual wheelchairs. The researchers are seeking both wheelchair users and non-wheelchair users to participate. You must be age 50+ to participate. Participants will receive $40 plus $10 for parking.

Info: or 734-764-9965

Your Input Needed: Medicaid Recipients

Do you use Medicaid’s Home and Community-Based Services? If so, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is seeking your feedback. MDHHS is forming advisory committees to provide information about needs, services and health inequities. A statewide committee as well as committees specific to the counties of Chippawa, Grand Traverse, Kalamazoo and Wayne are being formed. MDHHS is particularly interested in having beneficiaries and their family members participate.

Your Input Needed: Dysarthric or Slurred Speech Technology

Students at the University of Michigan are seeking input from individuals with dysarthria or slurred speech as they develop technology to provide independence for individuals on the non-standard speech spectrum. Participants are entered into a drawing for a $100 gift card.

Info: Click here or contact

Your Input Needed: Vision Disabilities and Beauty Products

Researchers at the University of Michigan are investigating issues related to beauty product descriptions and vision disabilities. If you have a vision disability and use beauty products, share your input by clicking here.

Your input may also be valuable via interview format. For info, contact

MS Support Group

For people with MS, their families, friends, and personal assistants discussing a range of topics. Meetings are free and strictly confidential.
Mondays, 7-8:30 pm

For info and to get the Zoom link, call Jody (734) 663-0785

Ann Arbor Social Events with ClubLife Ann Arbor

ClubLife Ann Arbor is a small group of adults with disabilities who meet weekly. Activities include dining out, bowling, mobility, volunteering, recreation, leisure and more.

Info: Contact or 734-788-7916

Movie-Watching Group Organized by James

Get together to go to the movie theater and watch action and superhero movies. After the movie we'll go to a nearby restaurant. Open to anyone 18+ who loves movies.

Once per month on Saturdays

Info: Visit the group website or contact James at

Have a Speech Impairment? Test a New Google App

Google is developing an app that will make face-to-face conversation easier for those with speech impairments. Google is now seeking beta testers to give their feedback about what it's like to use the app. More info about the app is here.

Interested? Sign up by filling out this form.

Older Phones and Devices Expiring

If you have an older phone or another device, it may be losing its data service soon. Devices using 3G network technology will no longer get service starting March-December of 2022. This includes some older phones, medical alert devices, tablets, smart watches, home security systems, and more. AT&T, Verizon, and other carriers will notify subscribers if your 3G service will be ending but some users may not be notified. If you are unsure if your device uses 3G technology, reach out to the CIL at

AARP Ride@50+ Program – Washtenaw County

Would you like to view all your public transportation options in one place and compare times, locations, and pricing? Learn more about the AARP Ride@50+ program, a partnership with AAATA bringing transportation information to citizens in one place. To learn more, visit the AARP Ride@50+ program website, call 844-900-4892, or download the app by searching for Feonix.

Many transportation providers offer discounted rates through this program.

Autism MeetUp

Peer group for adults 18 and over with autism in collaboration with the Developmental Disabilities Council of Michigan and the Ann Arbor CIL.

Meets online the first Tuesday of every month, 6-8 pm

Join Us on Facebook and Twitter

Our social media channels have great info to stay connected with us all week long. Our Twitter page includes resources and tips in the community and our Facebook page includes photos and info about CIL activities. Check us out and "like" or comment on something!

Building and Service Availability

Both the Ann Arbor CIL and Monroe CIL buildings remain closed. We are providing help and holding all programs via phone, email or online video. For assistance, contact the Ann Arbor office at 734-971-0277 or, or contact the Monroe office at 734-682-5271 or
The mission of the Ann Arbor Center for Independent Living is to empower the lives of people with disabilities and to advocate for a more inclusive community for all.
Ann Arbor Center for Independent Living | 3941 Research Park Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48108 | 734-971-0277

Monroe Center for Independent Living | 15515 S Dixie Hwy, Monroe, MI 48161 | 734-682-5271