This week, Leo reflects on his trip to The Arc US in Washington, D.C.; we launched a new transition-focused Facebook group; MFOFC's Family Leadership Series application period is now open; and more!
Leo's Letter
A House Divided, The Arc United

“A house divided against itself cannot stand.”

So said Abraham Lincoln in 1858 as he made an unsuccessful run for the U.S. Senate. There is no question that today, our country is much divided. But The Arc cannot afford to be divided. Regardless of the barriers or the conflicts, we have to work to address inequities and the common human needs of our constituents. Continue reading.
Join us for a Community Forum: Medical Issues Related to Aging with Disabilities
October 26, 2018 | 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Lexington Community Center
39 Marrett Road, Lexington

Panelists will provide information about the medical conditions and issues that are prevalent in people with autism, Down syndrome, and other disabilities as they age.  Seating is limited. Preference will be given to Lexington residents.

  • Ann Neumeyer, MD, a Neurologist and the Medical Director at the Lurie Center for Autism.
  • Julie Anne Moran, DO, a geriatrician and Consultant Physician for the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services.
  • Stephanie Santoro, MD, the Director of Quality Improvement Research for the Down Syndrome Program and a clinician for pediatric and adult patients with Down syndrome and patients in Medical Genetics at MGHfC and MGH.

Special thanks to the Dana Home Foundation for funding this event.
Join the new Massachusetts Transition to Adulthood Facebook group!

The Arc of Massachusetts is partnering with several other organizations in a new Massachusetts Transition to Adulthood Facebook group . Family members of young people with disabilities can join the group to get the latest information, see inspiring stories, and connect with other families, all related to the transition from school to work and adult life. The group is hosted by a partnership of the Institute for Community Inclusion, Massachusetts Families Organizing for Change, the Federation for Children with Special Needs, Easter Seals Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Autism Commission, and The Arc of Massachusetts.

The creation of this group is a project of the Massachusetts Partnership for Transition to Employment , a federally-funded, collaborative systems-change project designed to improve employment outcomes for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities transitioning from school to adult life.

Training Center
DDS Autism Transitions, Eligibility, and Services Explained
Presenter: Maria Stefano
Offered by AANE
9/24/18, 7:00pm, $25

Join the Massachusetts Department of Development Services for a live webinar that covers today's topical autism processes. Transition, eligibility, and services will be discussed as Metro Region Autism Program Coordinator, Maria Stefano provides information to help newly eligible individuals and their families navigate the process and broaden their understanding of DDS.

Raising the Bar: Seeing Employment as Part of Our Children’s Future
Presenter: Sean Roy
10/10/18, 12:00pm, Free

This session is designed to help parents see that with high expectations, the right supports, and thoughtful preparation, employment is possible. Success stories will be shared and strategies offered to help youth prepare for employment through chores at home and work experience in the community. Families play a vital role in the transition success of youth with disabilities and this session will help families raise the bar and envision a employment success for their son or daughter.

Are you an older caregiver? Join us for a Community Conversation!

As part of the Becker Center, The Arc of Massachusetts is planning community forums across Massachusetts this fall. The purpose is to examine the needs of older caregivers  A recent publication, the Family and Individual Needs for Disability Supports (FINDS) 2017 Community Report, states that 2/3 of caregivers are aging. In Massachusetts, over 18,000 individuals are living with family caregivers. More than 9,000 of these family members are adults; 3,100 of the adults are age 40 and older and they live with a caregiver over the age of 60 years.

Older caregivers, elder and disability professionals, policy makers and interested community members are welcome to attend and learn:
  • What older caregivers need to feel supported
  • Where they experience gaps
  • What is most important for service providers to know and understand?
Stay tuned for additional forums! For more information, contact Kerry Mahoney .
Application for Northeast MFOFC Family Leadership Series now open

The MFOFC Family Leadership Series brings together family members across northeastern Massachusetts for 3 overnights where they study leadership, best practices in supporting people with disabilities, policy-making and legislative advocacy. A limited amount of respite funding and assistance with transportation is available.

This training is generously funded through the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) and provided to participants for free. Families whose loved ones have been determined eligible for DDS services are particularly encouraged to apply.

Upcoming Events
Center of Hope Foundation's Wine Tasting and Live Auction

October 12, 2018 | 6:00 PM
Point Breeze Restaurant
114 Point Breeze Road | Webster
$50 per person at door, $85 per couple before 10/8

Contact Pauline Davis at (508) 764-4085 to purchase tickets or for more information .
Agency Spotlight