Your Gift Can Make a Big Difference in the Life of 
Someone Like Brielle 
Some parents turn to THE ARC OF DAUPHIN COUNTY when their children are only a few weeks old. Often times, it is later, once school begins, or even later in life. Whatever the age, The Arc of Dauphin County has been focused on helping the consumer to have the best life possible, and to helping the family or supporting persons work toward that goal.

Thanks to people like you, The Arc of Daupin County has been here for 65 years! We support consumers and families through our Advocate program, which helps families find answers. The Arc of Dauphin County's Advocate stays with the child throughout their lifetime, well into adulthood, helping their family ensure the very best life for them.

Will You Help Us Celebrate a Person's Abilities?

The Arc of Dauphin County works hard every day to help our consumers  live up to their full potential. For some, that means they find encouragement and are taking school by storm!  For others, we  help them develop skills to land a competitive job after high school.  Some folks have a dream of being able to self-direct their lives, surrounding themselves with the supports they want-and through our new Supports Broker program, we can help make that possible.  So many possibilities out there, and your legacy organization, the 65-year-old Arc of Dauphin County, is fully engaged with our consumers, helping them to achieve.

Will you give to The Campaign for Best Lives, a campaign that supports The Arc's work to improve lives for those with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities through our Advocacy Services?

The Arc's Campaign For Best Lives continues through December 31st  for 2017 tax deductions.  

You can give by sending your contribution to: Campaign for Best Lives, The Arc of Dauphin County, 2569 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, PA  17103.

You know that when giving to The Arc of Dauphin County your gift to the Campaign makes "all the difference in the world" for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families.

The Arc of Dauphin County's  44th Annual Art Exhibition, Created by Artists with Special Needs, Has Launched!

The Arc of Dauphin County's  44th Annual Art Exhibition, created by artists with Special Needs, has launched!
Titled  "Our Art, Our Voice", the exhibition will travel to numerous sites before concluding at the March Speak Out! Celebration.

"This project has been a labor of love for not only most of the Arc professional team, it has been a journey for the artists; some have art instructors or advisors and they have been involved in this as well," said Caterina Veccia, a member of the Arc team. 

The show is juried;  judging took place November 7th with nearly 20 artists receiving awards.  The exhibition was so impressive the panel of six judges required 3-1/4 hours to look everything over and make awards. 

The judges for the 44th Annual Our Art, Our Voice exhibition were:  Alice Anne Schwab, Executive Director of the Susquehanna Art Museum; Lauren Nye, Exhibition Director of the Susquehanna Art Museum; Marcie Otterson, portrait artist, muralist and jewelry maker;  Marie Gamon, plein air artist, noted member of many art associations and jewelry maker;  Lindsey Christie,  artist and member of The Arc of Dauphin County's professional staff and Caterina Veccia, art lover and member of The Arc's professional staff.

Please come see the exhibition in person!  "We have made many significant changes to the exhibition, perhaps most notable being the idea of a traveling exhibition.  The purpose of that is to give maximum exposure to our artists, to encourage the artists to keep expressing themselves, and to allow the public to have a better chance of seeing the art on display as not everyone would normally find themselves at any one particular location-by spreading it out, more will get to view this terrific art," said Ken Seeger, Director of Consumer Programs at The Arc of Dauphin County.

December 2 through December 14th:  
Pennsylvania State Capitol Building  501 N 3rd St, Harrisburg, PA 17120 
January 8 through January 21st:  
Harrisburg International Airport 1 Terminal Drive, Middletown, PA 17057  (888) 235-9442  
January 23 through February 7th:  
Lebanon County Mall:  2231 Lebanon Valley Mall, Lebanon, PA 17042  (717) 274-2564     
February 9 through February 27:  
Gamut Theatre: 15 N 4th St, Harrisburg, PA 17101   (717) 238-4111
March 1 or 2 (Exact Date TBD) through March 19th:  
Selected Pieces will be on display at The Susquehanna Art Museum, 1401 N 3rd St. Harrisburg, PA 17102  (717) 233-8668

An exclusive Art Show Reception for our artists, their friends and families, supporters of the exhibition, the media and other interested parties will be announced soon for either a January or a February date.  If you would like to be certain you are on the invitation list, please send email to , or call Barbara B. at 717.920.2727.

Craig's Corner
A Message from our President and CEO

Our Campaign for Best Lives 2017-2018 has kicked off.  Our goal this year is $50,000, which is used to support our Advocacy Program and other services we provide our consumers  which do not get reimbursement from county, state or federal sources.

What does our Advocate do?  Kathy Gingerich, our Advocate, has a loaded calendar-every minute of every day, she is working with a family or a consumer helping them to find their way in "the system."  It could be she goes with the parent and the student to school to help the family and the school to agree on best approaches for the student's individual growth and achievement, or it could be to help a family who has no idea where to go for help and support.  Kathy not only advocates for the family and the individual consumer, she also teaches them how to advocate for themselves-after all, we only have one Kathy!  Kathy's career here has been marked with over 12 years at The Arc of successfully navigating the Human Services and Educational services all with one focus-helping the consumer.

So we ask you to carefully consider what you can offer in a tax-free end of the year gift to help support Kathy's work and other programs of The Arc of Dauphin County in this, our Sapphire Year.  Yes, 65 years serving the Special Needs Community in Dauphin County.  

The best birthday gift we could ever receive in our 65th year would be to make our $50,000 goal for the Campaign for Best Lives.  

You can call Barbara Bressler at our office to donate over the telephone at  717.920.2727, or you can send your gift to:  The Arc of Dauphin County, 2569 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, PA  17003.
The Miller's Minute:
Life Insurance Offers a Way to Fund a Special Needs Trust Without Financial Strain
by Financial Advisor Michael Miller

As a special needs planner, I consult with families who are concerned about the long-term financial security of their loved ones with special needs, especially after those who have been providing support pass away.  This concern is one reason to create a special needs trust.  But not every family can afford to fund a special needs trust with enough money to care for a person with special needs over the course of his lifetime.  Life insurance may provide a unique opportunity for many families to guarantee the financial security of their loved ones with special needs without placing a financial strain on other family members.

There are different types of life insurance that can be used to fund a special needs trust, but whichever type of insurance is purchased, the death benefit is directed to a special needs trust for the individual with special needs.  

Term life insurance is the easiest to understand.  Under a term policy, the insurance company agrees to pay a fixed amount of money if the insured person dies during a set period of time.  If the insured person survives the policy's term, the insurance lapses and there is no benefit.

Whole life insurance is a little different.  A whole policy typically lasts for the insured person's lifetime and the policy accrues value over time.  The accrued funds generate interest and the policy typically pays dividends, adding to the value of the payout.  

Universal life insurance accumulates value like a whole life insurance policy, but the policy owner can typically adjust the premium payments and death benefits over the life of the policy.  With both whole life insurance and universal life insurance, the policy owners can contribute enough money to the policy to guarantee a future death benefit, regardless of how long they live.  This is called a "paid up" policy, and it provides the emotional security of knowing that the life insurance will be there to fund the trust even if a family's financial circumstances change in the future.

One of the most important types of life insurance for families of people with special needs is called second to die insurance.  These are policies taken out on the lives of two people and pay out when the second person passes away.  Because of this, the premiums are typically lower than for individual policies, allowing families to provide greater sums for the beneficiaries after the death of the second parent. 

Once a family has decided to fund a trust with life insurance, the follow up question becomes "how much life insurance should we own?"  You should always consult with your special needs planner before purchasing any life insurance destined for a special needs trust. 

Mr. Miller is a financial advisor with a designation to advise families with special needs individuals.  If you would like to discuss how to put a financial and legal plan in place for a loved one with special needs, please reach out through The Arc. 

Securities and Advisory Services are offered through Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.  

Invitation to Attend DSP Hearing and Fight for DSP's

Have you heard about the DSP Crisis?   DSP stands for "Direct Support Professional," and includes all those who work with consumers in their homes and elsewhere, often as a "HabAid" or other direct support.  

These folks work tirelessly all day long brushing teeth, toileting, being a friend, feeding, engaging in activities out in the community, teaching, entertaining, coaching.  The Crisis part?  They earn below poverty level wages, creating a "churn" of DSP's leaving the field because they have their own lives to support as well.  The have to pay their own food, housing, transportation, insurance, and all other living expenses, of course. 

To address this problem, Maureen Cronin, Executive Director of The Arc of Pennsylvania, has issued this invitation to all our readers, especially those with Special Needs: 

"The House Human Services Committee hearing on the DSP Crisis will be held on Wednesday, December 6th from 9-11 AM  in Room 60, East Wing, at the Pennsylvania Capitol."

There will be a variety of testifiers including Laura Princiotta from The Arc of Philadelphia and past Board President of The Arc of Pennsylvania, M. J. Bartelmay. It is critical that we show the committee members the impact of the DSP Crisis. 

Please consider attending.  It would simply be a matter of coming to the Capitol and sitting in the audience during the hearing.  Please contact Anne Yanikov at  if you plan to attend, and let her know you are with The Arc of Dauphin County. Thank you! 

 The Bureau of Savings Programs, part of the Pennsylvania Treasury, has sent out new information regarding ABLE Accounts:
"News to share about the PA ABLE Savings Program!
As you may already be aware, up to $14,000 per person can be deducted from Pennsylvania state income tax. This new tax deduction is exclusively for contributions made to a PA ABLE Savings Program account and is effective immediately.
As you know, PA ABLE provides people with disabilities and their families with a way to plan for a financially secure future without affecting important government benefits.
This great, new tax benefit makes PA ABLE an even better way to save and pay for many disability-related expenses."
This is good news you could share with others who have an interest in the ABLE accounts.

We are Supporting Veterans at the Robert Jackson Veteran's Center this Christmas

We are a non-profit organization who assists those with intellectual and developmental disabilities achieve the best quality of life.  As a local establishment we strive to assist the community in as many ways as possible. This year we are hosting a fund-raiser in association with the Robert Jackson Veterans Center in order to purchase Christmas gift cards for our Veterans honoring their risk of life to serve our country.

Please help us give back to those honorable men and women who have valiantly protected our freedom.  You can make a donation by making contact with The Arc's Celeste Martin at 717.920.2727. 

You may also purchase gift cards (to stores such as Wal-Mart, Target and K-mart, which are on bus routes and that have basics people need)  and mail them to The ARC of Dauphin County, 2569 Walnut Street, Harrisburg  17103.  

"The Arc team is working on this campaign as our annual Christmas project and we welcome community involvement to help our Veterans," said Celeste Martin, project chair.  

The AKTION Club Food Drive

The AKTION Club provides adults with disabilities an opportunity to serve their communities.  Until January 15 the Arc of Dauphin County's consumers in the AKTION Club are collecting canned goods for the Salvation Army Food Pantry.  At this time there is an urgent need for canned soup and canned fruit. 

Please help us make this a successful drive!  

Bring your food donations to the Arc at 2569 Walnut Street, Harrisburg 17103.

Open Enrollment for ACA Ends on December 15!

This year the enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act will end sooner than in past years.

If you don't have health insurance through your job, Medicare, Medicaid, or another source you can find it through the Marketplace.

Coverage for plans sold during Open Enrollment starts January 1, 2018.

You can apply for coverage in the way that's most convenient for you:
  • Online att htps://
  • By phone at 1-800-318-2596 (TTY: 1-855-889-4325)
  • With in-person help
  • With a paper application
After December 15, you can enroll for a 2018 health insurance plan only if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. You can find out if you qualify at  

Save The Date!

We have some very important opportunities coming up that you don't want to miss!   

NOW THROUGH JANUARY:  The Campaign for Best Lives, our annual appeal.  This is the time of the year you can make a supporting gift to The Arc, receive a tax credit letter, and know that your gift has directly supported our consumers.
JANUARY:  (Date and time to be announced---probably will be offered at two different times): 
A neurologist and others will present new ways of dealing with seizures in those with special needs.  This will certainly be a "lunch & learn" that parents, guardians, care givers, group home owners and group home managers and other staff will definitely want to attend.  Keep watching for the January date!
FEBRUARY:  Our annual Valentine's Dinner & Dance, a great social experience for those with special needs.  We'll announce the exact date very soon so you can start planning.
MARCH:  Speak Out! Celebration will be held at the Premier Best Western, 800 East Park Drive on March 25th.  Dinner, Dancing, Special Live Music, and Uplifting Program.  Note the new location!
EACH MONTH, FIRST FRIDAY:  Don't forget our First Friday of the Month Dances!  The Arc of Dauphin County Community Room, live DJ, great food, music and friends.  5:30 to 7:30.  Two hours of pure fun and networking with new and old friends!

Upcoming Events

December 1, 2017

First Friday Dance

Hosted by:  The Arc of Dauphin County
Location: The Arc of Dauphin County , 2569 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, PA
Time:  5:30 PM - 7:30 PM

Fee: $5  


Do you like organization?  The Arc of Dauphin County seeks energized, "want to make the world a better place" volunteers to help us with our new FOA (Friends of The Arc) program, filing, organizing our many closets of supplies, materials and other assets.  Even one day a month would be wonderful help!  Call Barb Bressler at 717.920.2727.

The "penthouse" level of our Respite Center Building (RCB) is becoming our Archive.  This beautiful space has its own independent heating and cooling system, it is very, very quiet on this floor, and you would be working on your own schedule to organize seven years of records.  The Archive will be divided into seven departments, and over time, the Archivist of The Arc will get all seven departments organized and searchable.  The Archivist candidate will need to pass FBI background checks, and other background checks.  Must also be able to lift a "banker's box" of files, and able to climb two flights of stairs to reach the Archive.  This is a very special volunteer opportunity for a very special person, and will remain open until filled.  For more information, please contact Craig George at , and specify in the subject line: ARCHIVES.

Your place to socialize and enjoy the music is The Arc of Dauphin County.  For nearly a decade we have been offering "First Friday Dances" complete with a DJ spinning your favorite tunes.  $5.00 covers entrance and hot dogs, cookies, soda, etc. (free to Charter Members of The Arc of Dauphin County)

The Arc of Dauphin County is Hiring!  E-mail to find out about any of the following opportunities:

CONSULTANT in the Positive Behavior Support Department.  A Bachelor's degree and certification/training in ABA techniques are requirements for this full-time temporary opportunity.
RESPITE CARE COUNSELOR - seeking one part-time person to provide support in our Respite program.  

We also have the following unpaid internship available:

Help support our friends with disabilities through our advocacy, education, consumer programs, life in the community/inclusion, and so much more!  Your gift ensures our non-profit can continue to provide the best services possible.  Our new Respite Center, which will open after the first of the year, will also benefit from your generosity.  Please e-mail Craig George at , or call the main switchboard at 717.920.2727.

If you are thinking long term, so are we!  Planning for the future, The Arc of Dauphin County will soon launch a Planned Giving program, which will allow our supporters who own a house or other real estate, who have paid up life insurance policies, or who would like to contribute to a trust or an Arc Endowment, as well as many other planned gift vehicles, to think long term with us.  Did you know without proper planning, the largest benefactor of your estate will be Uncle Sam?  Many planned gifts pass outside of probate from you to your loved ones and other beneficiaries, such as The Arc of Dauphin County.  For a confidential consultation, please e-mail Craig George at or call the main switchboard at 717.920.2727.

Visit us at