We Connect Now helps college students with disabilities to succeed in their studies by getting the information and support they need, both through resources, links, blogs latest news, studying existing laws and regulation and through personal contacts. http://weconnectnow.wordpress.com/
Resource from the Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion: A Practical Guide for People with Disabilities who Want to go to College. This new publication provides a practical guide to help people with disabilities who want to return to college – to community colleges or career institutes, or for four-year degrees or graduate education. The publication provides an overview of the challenges and supports needed in four areas: finding the right school, locating supports at your school, managing your disability and your education, and using your new educational qualifications in the search for a better job.(To view or download A Practical Guide for People with Disabilities who Want to go to College PDF)
Common forms of financial aid include grants, loans, work-study and scholarships. Some are available specifically for students with disabilities. Many students use a combination of these financial aid resources. Check out this extensive list of grants, loans and other forms of college financial assistance from the federal government and the private sector. This link opens a PDF document.
Federal Student Aid, an office of the U.S. Department of Education, administers the nation’s largest source of student aid. Among the most visible and essential services are the development, distribution, and processing of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSASM), the form used to apply for all federal, as well as for many state, regional and private student aid programs.
SouthCoast Compeer is a local chapter of Compeer International ( www.compeer.org), an award winning program that brings the healing power of friendship to the treatment of mental illness. Our chapter serves Fall River, New Bedford, Taunton, and the surrounding towns. The Compeer program is an adjunct to therapy and is based on the concept that a volunteer’s friendship, advocacy and support can offset the loneliness and fear experienced by those suffering from mental illness. Mental health professionals refer clients to Compeer, provide consultation to the volunteer, and are available for backup support.
Information on internships at the Kennedy Center for college juniors/seniors, graduate students and recent college graduates (within two years of graduation) who are interested in beginning careers in performing arts management and/or arts education. Internships are full-time and last from three to four months.
The Washington Center provides students challenging opportunities to work and learn in Washington, D.C. in government, business and the non-profit sector for academic credit.
The College Board’s Scholarship Search, locate scholarships, internships, grants and loans that match your education level, talents and background.
American Association on Health & Disability (AAHD) Scholarship Program, supports students with disabilities who are pursuing undergraduate/graduate studies. Preference will be given to students who plan to major in public health, disability studies, health promotion or a field related to disability and health.
Guide for prospective college students, their parents, high school guidance counselors and others involved with assisting students in finding the right college. The guide has information based on a survey of post secondary programs serving deaf and hard of hearing students in the United States.
Understanding College, before making plans to attend college there are some things to be aware. There a few ways to enter college, either before you leave high school or after you have finished high school. Also, if you are a person with a disability and you anticipate you might need assistance in college, you should know where you can seek out these services.
Transition Checklist, this checklist is designed to give family members an easy to use list of topics that should be taken into consideration when discussing transition from high school to college.
Disability Friendly Colleges, online college guide for students with physical disabilities contains interactive charts of the most disability friendly colleges and profiles of the colleges that provide services necessary for students with physical disabilities to live on campus.
Campus Mental Health: Know Your Rights! A guide for students who want to seek help for mental illness or emotional distress. Produced by the Leadership21 Committee of the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law. Chapters include: You are Not Alone, Seeking Help, Privacy, Academic Accomodations, Discipline, Involuntary Leave of Absence, Going to a Psychiatric Hospital, Forced Medication, Resources.
Going to College, A resource for teens with disabilities
As the nation’s leading organization working to reduce emotional distress and prevent suicide among college students , The Jed Foundation is protecting the mental health of students across the country.
Half of Us:through Half of Us, mtvU and The Jed Foundation want to
initiate a public dialogue to raise awareness about the prevalence of
mental health issues on campus and connect students to the appropriate resources to get help
The Higher Education Support Toolkit, developed by the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation , provides disability service staff and health care staff with a simple way to work with students who are experiencing challenges arising from their psychiatric disability. The toolkit is available as a free download at the Center’s website at.
Heath Resource Center at George Washington University, national clearinghouse of information for individuals with disabilities. The center publishes an annually updated paper on financial resources:
Lilly Reintegration Scholarship, to assist persons with schizophrenia , schizophrenia-spectrum disorders and bipolar disorder acquire educational and vocational skills to reintegrate into society and secure employment
The U.S. Department of Education’s Guide to Federal Student Aid (2009-2010) provides information for students and families on applying for federal student aid to pay for post-secondary education.
Mass. Association of 766 Approved Private Schools, dedicated to providing educational programs and services to students with special needs:
New England Psychologist compiled the following directory, updated as of October 2009, from information provided by the individual therapeutic residential schools in response to a questionnaire sent to them. Additional information can be obtained by contacting the schools directly. http://www.newenglandpsychologist.com/residential/index.html#MA
Pathways Academy is a private, year-round school developed to meet the psychological, social and academic needs of children and adolescents ages six through 22, with Asperger’s Syndrome and related disorders, such as autism spectrum disorders, nonverbal learning disabilities, sensory processing disorder, socialization and peer-relations problems, anxiety disorders and school phobias.
Massachusetts Yellow Pages for Kids with Disabilities, Find educational consultants, psychologists, educational diagnosticians, health care providers, academic therapists, tutors, speech language therapists, occupational therapists, coaches, advocates, and attorneys for children with disabilities on the Yellow Pages for Kids for your state. You will also find special education schools, learning centers, treatment programs, parent groups, respite care, community centers, grassroots organizations, and government programs for children with disabilities:
Department of Education website : IDEA, OCR, educational and civil rights information http://ed.gov/
Learning Disabilities and ADHD Information http://www.ldonline.org/
MAAP Services for Autism & Asperger Syndrome: Information and advice for those with more advanced forms of autism, asperger syndrome and pervasive developmental disorder : http://www.maapservices.org/
National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities http://www.nichcy.org/Pages/Home.aspx
Information on UDL, which provides a framework to create and implement lessons with flexible goals, methods, materials and assessments that support learning for all students, especially those with disabilities. Includes examples of UDL model lessons . http://udlselfcheck.cast.org/learn.php
The PAL toolkit applies Universal Design Learning (UDL) to planning and developing instruction in ways that promote access, participation and progress in the general education curriculum for all learners. Provides specific planning steps, guidance, mentoring, model lessons, tools, templates, resources and links to other educators using the PAL Model. http://www.cast.org/teachingeverystudent/toolkits/tk_introduction.cfm?tk_id=21
Information about the process by which children are identified as having a disability and in need of special education and related services.
A series of four captioned videos from CAST , Diversity of Learners, Universal Design & Universal Design for Learning, The Brain Research and Principles of Universal Design for Learning, that explain the theory and practice of UDL. http://lessonbuilder.cast.org/window.php?src=videos
Caregiver Guide for Special Needs:
Know your rights. Ask questions. Demand tests. Speak to your child’s school about developing an individual education plan to accommodate your child’s needs. Most importantly, don’t take no for an answer. Every child deserves a proper diagnosis. Every child is worthy of a free and legal education. Every parent is entitled to know their options: http://www.diagnosingparentsrights.com/
Developing Your Child’s IEP explains the basics of the special education process and Individualized Education Plans (IEPs), and information on how to be an effective partner with your child’s school. This link opens a PDF document:http://www.nichcy.org/InformationResources/Documents/NICHCY%20PUBS/pa12.pdf
SCAN 360 helps parents with IEP , trainings on site at SCAN360 help parents advocate for their children (413) 731-3110 (voice), (413) 731-3116 (TTY) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org: http://www.scan360.org
Respite Care for Children with Special Care Needs “Getting a Break: A Roadmap to Respite Care for Massachusetts Families of Children with Special Health Care Needs” brochure available for download on Massachusetts’ Family Voices website. This brochure gives strategies for making the most of limited respite resources & Massachusetts publicly-funded respite services.
SPED Child and Teen offers valuable information on Massachusetts Area Special Needs workshops, seminars and more regarding financial help, legal help, and free or low cost family and support programs:
Parents, educators, advocates, and attorneys come to Wrightslaw for accurate, reliable information about special education law, education law, and advocacy for children with disabilities:
10 Tips to End the School Year, other tips and parent resources:
Community Work Incentive Coordinators / Benefits Specialists: If you are planning on returning to work, you can talk with a Community Work Incentive Coordinator free of charge. Benefits Specialists will explain how you can maintain your benefits when you go to work. Project Impact & BenePLAN programs assist beneficiaries, family members, service providers and agencies make informed choices about employment. Both programs give individuals with disabilities access to information regarding Social Security Work Incentives, Public Health Insurance, Long-term care services, Employment Based Health Insurance, benefits through the Department of Transitional Assistance, and Federal and State Housing Programs. In addition, Benefit Specialists will be available to develop individualized Benefit Plans. Both programs help students and parents navigate the transition from school to work. Call to find out about future workshops.
Work and Mental Health of the Royal College of Psychiatrists Let Wisdom Guide website: This area contains information and links to resources for people who are planning to start work, or make changes to help them to stay productive at work or to return to work when recovering from a period of mental ill-health.
This resource map from Choose Work has information about work incentives programs, employment networks, vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies and other contacts in your state that can help you find and keep a job. Career One Stop also has information about job banks in every state:
Work without Limits, Regional Employment Collaboratives have the goal of improving competitive employment outcomes for individuals with disabilities in Massachusetts:
The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) is a service provided by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP). JAN is one of several ODEP projects . JAN’s mission is to facilitate the employment and retention of workers with disabilities by providing employers, employment providers, people with disabilities, their family members and other interested parties with information on job accommodations, entrepreneurship, and related subjects. JAN’s efforts are in support of the employment, including self-employment and small business ownership, of people with disabilities. JAN represents the most comprehensive resource for job accommodations available.
National Assistive Technology Technical Assistance Partnership (NATTAP) provides assistance to the AT Act Grantees to assist them in reducing barriers and increasing access to assistive technology (AT) devices and services for consumers with disabilities of all ages. This project also provides technical assistance in the areas related to universal design, state procurement actions, and funding of AT.
Choose Work through the Ticket to Work program, offering people with disabilities* a shot at achieving financial independence by enabling more choice in employment-related support services, and access to meaningful work.
Disability.gov , connecting the disability community to information and opportunities:
Information on employment supports to help people with severe mental illness find and retain competitive employment–a key component of recovery. This link opens a PDF document.
Fact sheet that answers questions about workplace supports that individuals with disabilities may need to obtain and keep a job. This information can be downloaded in Word format.
The Greater Boston Employment Collaborative has created a free and confidential help line that connects businesses with trained, experienced staff from human service agencies, state agencies, and workforce development professionals. Businesses may have disability-related questions after hiring and onboarding new staff, or questions may arise as a worker develops a new disability (either temporary or permanent) and can now dial 1-855-484-GBEC (4232) toll-free to ask questions.
Help Starting A Small Business , people with disabilities who want to start a business can find assistance and support from a number of different local agencies. This fact sheet lists some of the many resources that are available across the country that can help you become self-employed or start a small business. This information can be downloaded in Word format:
The Massachusetts Clubhouse Coalition (MCC) has 32 clubhouses around the state. Participation in the clubhouse is free to those who have a serious and persistent mental illness. The Clubhouses are funded with state tax dollars via the Department of Mental Health. Clubhouses are founded on the belief that rehabilitation for people who are working to recover from the effects of mental illness is greatly facilitated when individuals participate in meaningful work, including paid employment. As such, the cornerstone of Clubhouse programming is a three-tiered approach to helping people with mental illness gain employment: Transitional Employment (TE), Supported Employment (SE), and Independent Employment (IE). In each type of employment, professional Clubhouse staff people (who may or may not have a mental illness) serve as coaches for members as they go through the process of securing and maintaining gainful employment. The MCC has helped Clubhouses develop TE and SE jobs locally with many companies and by proving our ability to help members gain employment and remain integrated and stable in the communities.
Individual Members Planning and Accessing Choices Together” or “IMPACT “. It will be administered through the Statewide Employment Services Department (SES) of the MRC Community Services to provide work incentives planning and assistance services for individuals with disabilities who are interested in working or returning to work:
Pine Street has offered job training and job readiness programs to homeless men and women. These programs provide participants with the skills needed to succeed in the journey back to employment. The Working Program provides housing for men and women who are working on a regular basis and saving their earnings to eventually move to private housing. The Employment assistance and support groups are also offered on site:
ABILITY Jobs Job Search, this site provides a place where people with disabilites can look for employment. Create an account to post your resume or search their job bank.
Job Seekers Page of the Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, job seekers information including One-Stop Career Centers and Special Programs:
Boston University Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, Recovery Education Program, Training for the Future and Individual Services in Recovery
Jewish Vocational Services, JVS provides job search, employment assistance, education, training, career development, and support to individuals from all backgrounds
Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center ministries in the United States provide an in-residence rehabilitation program with a focus on basic necessities. Each beneficiary (program participant) is provided with a clean and healthy living environment, good food, work therapy, leisure time activities, group and individual counseling, spiritual direction, and resources to assist each person to develop life skills and a personal relationship with God as provided by Jesus Christ:
Easter Seals, conducts an assessment of a person’s interests, skills and knowledge that would be applicable to the workplace. Secondly, the program offers skills training and the opportunity to receive assistance in career planning. Finally, Easter Seals offers job seekers assistance to secure employment:
VolunteerMatch strengthens communities by making it easier for good people and good causes to connect.
Do you want to volunteer as a family, but you can’t seem to find organizations that will accept you and your kids?
Information on the VA Voluntary Service (VAVS), which allows volunteers to provide services to Veterans through numerous programs, including the Student Volunteer Program at VA medical centers, National Salute to Veterans , Volunteer Transportation Network and Corporate Volunteerism .
Boston Cares organizes and leads team oriented volunteer opportunities throughout Greater Boston that have a positive impact on individuals and communities:
Mass. Connect and Serve statewide volunteer web portal that connects citizens with volunteer organizations in their communities: http://www.mass.gov/?pageID=mg2terminal&L=4&L0=Home&L1=Resident&L2=Citizen+Involvement&L3=Volunteer+in+Your+Community&sid=massgov2&b=terminalcontent&f=volunteer_main&csid=massgov2