This week, Executive Director Leo Sarkissian reflects on all that The Arc of Massachusetts has been up to in recent weeks; new webinars on Government Affairs issues; a support group for families in Western MA; a presentation by Dr. Stephen Shore; and more!
Leo's Letter
Hurried Days

You may find our experience typical given the world today, but I am astounded by the fast pace which we must maintain to keep our advocacy effective! This pace cannot be successfully maintained without a strong professional team, for which I’m extremely grateful.

We work collaboratively with chapters, partner agencies and many families and volunteers - but staff are needed for consistent coordination, support, and communication.

The past two weeks alone are testament to the fast pace we maintain. Learn more about what we've recently accomplished.
Government Affairs
Nicky's Law Hearing Scheduled for April 30

Nicky's Law has been scheduled for the first hearing of the Committee on Children, Families and Persons with Disabilities. H101 and S71 will be heard on April 30. If you wish to share your testimony, or testify in person, please contact Maura Sullivan, Director of Government Affairs, at Sullivan@arcmass.org .

Click the image at the right to download this shareable flyer; and be sure to join the Nicky's Law Facebook group to stay up to date on all the latest.
Programs of The Arc
6-Week Transition Support Group (Western MA)
May 14, 21, 28 - June 4, 11, 18 | 10:00AM - 12:00PM
South Hadley Public Library, Trustees Room, 2 Canal Street, South Hadley

The Arc of Massachusetts is pleased to offer a 6-week transition support group for family members of people with intellectual and development disabilities. Parents with youth aged 14 to 26 years will find this most helpful. The group will include information about available supports and services; a dialogue of needs and solutions; opportunities for problem solving and planning; and relevant legislative or funding issues.

The group will provide family members a place to share and learn in a safe, non-judgmental environment. Attendance is limited, so don’t miss this wonderful opportunity. Light refreshments will be served. Please let us know if childcare is needed.

To register or for questions or more information, please contact Robbie Rubet at rrubet@arcmass.org or 413-535-9958.
Help Wanted: Tell Us Where You Live and Why

Take a short housing survey and get a $15 gift card for participating! The Arc of the US is doing research about where people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and their families live. Share your thoughts and experiences about where you live and why you decided to live there in an online survey. 

You qualify for this survey if you are a person with I/DD, or you are a family member of a person with I/DD 18 years and older. This survey will take approximately 10-15 minutes of your time.
Upcoming Calendar
Western Region: A Community Conversation
with Older Caregivers of Adults with Disabilities
Wednesday, May 1, 2019 | 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM
Registration, refreshments, and networking begin at 9:30AM
Holyoke Public Library, 250 Chestnut Street, Holyoke
Chapters of The Arc
Life on & Slightly to the Right of the Autism Spectrum: An Inside View towards Success with Dr. Stephen Shore, Ed.D
Friday, May 10 | 5:00 - 7:00PM
Charles River Center, 59 E Militia Heights Drive, Needham

Join Dr. Stephen Shore, Ed.D. in his autobiographical journey from the nonverbal days as he relates his life to the many challenges facing people on the autism spectrum. Some of the areas discussed include classroom accommodation, teaching of musical instruments, as well as issues faced by adults such as relationships, self-advocacy, higher education, and employment. The session ends with a short audience activity demonstrating what it feels like have autism and to struggle through some of the challenges surrounding communication and socialization. Register today.
Outside The Arc
The 2019 AFC Summit 3
Hosted by Nonotuck Resource Associates
Friday, May 17 | 7:45AM - 3:00PM
College of the Holy Cross, Worcester

The Adult Family Care (AFC) program supports over 10,000 adults across the state with over 100 agencies providing these supports to adults over the age of 16 living in a home with their caregiver, often family members, in the community.

The goal of the AFC Summit is to provide an educational and supportive forum for AFC provider organizations to discuss, develop and share knowledge. Central to the Summit’s mission is imparting best practice approaches through collaboration with trainers & presenters who have demonstrated expertise in their areas. This year we are excited to provide a wide array of trainings from: The Alzheimer’s Association, The Department of Public Health, The Cannabis Control Commission, UMASS Opioid Crisis Taskforce, Massachusetts Hoarding Taskforce and many more. For more information.

The Department of Developmental Services (DDS), in partnership with the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI), is hosting a statewide employment conference: Employment First! Expanding Job Opportunities and Pathways to Work on June 11 at the Best Western in Marlborough.  See attached flyer for more details about the day, including breakout sessions and the keynote speaker.
Agency Spotlight