May 2021
Empowering people with disabilities to lead independent and inclusive lives in the community.

A Message from Our Executive Director

Dear Friends,

Like most social service organizations, CILO made several pivots in providing our services for people with disabilities over the past year. I am very proud of our staff for recognizing the unique needs of our consumers during this time. While staying mission focused, we have helped consumers to safely maintain their independence in the community. Through funding provided by the Administration for Community Living of the Department of Health and Human Services, we were able to provide essential items to our consumers to assure their health and safety, obtain assistive technology, and facilitate home modifications, to name just a few.

We are pleased that we are still able to further assist people with disabilities in our service area to continue to live independently through the following:
·  Assistive technology software and equipment that is reasonable and necessary to facilitate independent living and remote work
·   Transportation costs to and from COVID vaccination appointments
·  Personal Protective Equipment and other essential personal care items necessary to promote health and safety
· Reasonable home modifications to preserve and maintain independent living

If you or someone you know has a unique need for assistance as a result of the pandemic, please contact me at 513-338-5100 or by email. I always appreciate your input on how we might improve or expand our services for people with disabilities.


Rob Festenstein

P.S. I once again have a $10 Starbucks gift card to the first person to contact me by email indicating you have read my message. 

Are you or someone you know in need of transportation to receive a COVID vaccine?
CILO can assist! Email us.
Hello people with disabilities, advocates, families, and all who support the independence of others!
Do you wish you were better at saving money? Do you find it difficult to afford services, supports, or other disability-related expenses? Have you or your family talked about how you will pay for support services as you get older?

HELP IS HERE! The Center for Independent Living Options is excited to announce a FREE, 4-part webinar series presented by Synergy Wealth Solutions on financial planning basics for people with disabilities!

The finance professionals at Synergy Wealth Solutions have worked with many clients with disabilities over the years to help them get financially organized and learn how to save money and plan for paying for future expenses. Now YOU have the opportunity to learn from the experts, FOR FREE!

Please view the attached flyer for details on the presentations. To register for one or more of the webinars, please email Patrick Ober, Disability Rights and Advocacy Specialist.

You do not want to miss this amazing opportunity to improve your money management NOW and plan for your future!

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on the mental health of people of all ages. Now, more than ever, it is critical to reduce the stigma around mental health struggles, because that stigma often prevents individuals from seeking help.

More than half of people with mental illness don't receive help for their disorders. Often, people avoid or delay seeking treatment due to concerns about being treated differently or fears of losing their jobs and livelihood. That's because stigma, prejudice and discrimination against people with mental illness is still very much a problem. You can learn more about what you can do to break the stigma here. #breakthestigma
CILO Needs Your Opinion!
CILO is committed to providing quality and innovative services that promote independent living for people with disabilities. In order to identify the issues and services important to people with disabilities in Southwest Ohio and Northern Kentucky, CILO needs your help!

Please fill out our two short, online surveys on Advocacy Needs and Independent Living Skills and Peer Support Needs. Tell us what YOU think are important independent living and advocacy needs CILO should work on for people with disabilities this year and in the future! Your response is appreciated by May 15, 2021.
If you have any questions, or would like a paper version of the survey or other accommodation, please contact Patrick Ober, Disability Rights and Advocacy Specialist, at 513-241-8046 or by email.

CILO Services Spotlight: Youth Summer Session

CILO is pleased to share that we are partnering with Project Yoga ( on two virtual summer sessions for youth ages 14-21. These sessions will provide instruction on mindfulness and breathing techniques that can foster a sense of calm awareness, concentration and resiliency and build on valuable life skills. The first session on July 8th will be for parents, caregivers and other support staff. The second session will be on July 15th for students with the support of the parent/caregiver/support staff in learning the same techniques.  

Pre-registration will be required, more info coming in June. In the meantime please send any questions to Debbie Moorehous.

CILO Emergency Assistance Funds made it possible for us to provide PC with his first bed after many years of homelessness and sleeping on the ground. PC, a consumer in our housing program, will now have the comfort of sleeping in his own, well-deserved bed as he recovers from a serious accident. 

On the day of the delivery, CILO’s Housing Coordinator met the delivery truck and helped set up the bed for PC at his new apartment. We are hopeful that this assistance will help him feel supported as he works towards his independent living goals.

CILO wants to assist more people like PC by accessing our Emergency Assistance Funds when there are no other resources available. We rely on fundraising and donations to replenish these funds. Please consider making a donation here.

Want to help make a difference while you shop in the Amazon app, at no extra cost to you?

Simply follow the instructions below to select "Independent Living Options Inc" as your charity and activate AmazonSmile in the app. They'll donate a portion of your eligible mobile app purchases to us.
How it works:
1. Open the Amazon app on your phone
2. Select the main menu (=) & tap on "AmazonSmile" within
Programs & Features
3. Select "Independent Living Options Inc" as your charity
4. Follow the on-screen instructions to activate AmazonSmile in
the mobile app 

You can support CILO with every Kroger purchase just by using your Kroger Plus Card!

Employee Anniversary

Congratulations to Suzanne Hopkins, Director of Programs, celebrating 6 years at CILO!
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