Family Support Tool Kits are provided by Autism Speaks. The purpose of each kit is to help teach family members and friends more about autism and its effects on families, and provide resources and support to enable them to lead happy and successful lives with their loved ones with autism.
The Autism Consortium in Boston is an innovative collaboration of scientific and clinical leaders working with families to change the research paradigm and accelerate the search for answers. They compiled a manual to assist families in transitioning teens to adult living that can be accessed here (need Adobe Acrobat Reader): Transitioning Teens with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Autism Speaks has launched a Transition Tool Kit. The kit identifies opportunities and resources to develop these skills with the goal of enabling the adolescent or young adult to participate to the greatest extent possible in their own transition plan. Other topics included in the kit are: Transition Planning and the IEP process, community life, employment, housing, post secondary educational opportunities and health.
Massachusetts State Resources
Asperger’s Association of New England offers support and social groups, online parent support groups, adult services and programs, and educational events.
Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission assists individuals with disabilities to live and work independently. MRC is responsible for Vocational Rehabilitation Services, Community Services, and eligibility determination for the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) federal benefits programs for Massachusetts citizens with disabilities.
Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (formerly DMR) “supports adults with intellectual disabilities (including mental retardation) within rules and regulations that are not always easy to understand.” They provide support for employment, facilities, community day activities, community residential services, and respite care.
Massachusetts Vocational Rehabilitation Services assists individuals with disabilities to obtain and maintain employment.
Local Resources in Massachusetts
The Homestead Community Farm Initiative is a group of people in the Pioneer Valley of Western MA that is working to create a farmstead where individuals with and without intellectual disabilities can live, work, and socialize together.