Free Workshops at The Nemasket Group

Massachusetts Families Organizing for Change (MFOFC) in partnership with the Building Futures Project and the Family Connections Center of The Nemasket Group is sponsoring “A Full Life Ahead,” a series of free workshops for parents and guardians of individuals with disabilities. The series focuses on providing information on topics such as social security, guardianship, friendships and transition that will lead to interdependent full lives in the community for people with disabilities.

Workshops are held at The Nemasket Group, located at 109 Fairhaven Road (The Pines), Mattapoisett, MA 02719 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm. RSVP to Amy Cornell at or phone 508-999-4436.

            Tuesday, March 7, 2017: Alphabet Soup of Resources – Social Security

Being aware of what entitlements your child is eligible for is important. Kim Melo, Benefits Specialist with the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC), will explain the Social Security (SSI/SSDI) programs, MassHealth and other benefits including the Section 8 program. Information on other services that can benefit individuals and families will also be provided.

            Tuesday, March 28, 2017: Alternatives to Guardianship

Guardianship does not have to be an all-or-nothing deal. If your family member needs help making decisions in some areas of life, but not others, there are a number of other options available. Jay O’Brien, Co-founder and Executive Director of Exceptional Lives, will talk about the alternatives to guardianship for families and caregivers of persons with disabilities.

            Tuesday, April 25, 2017: Expanding Opportunities for Friendships between People with and without Disabilities

Building and keeping relationships is an important part of a REAL LIFE. Happiness can come from knowing we have friends – people who care for us. Building relationships between individuals with or without disabilities should be encouraged wherever you live, learn, work and play. Jim Ross, Coordinator of the Widening the Circle Project, will lead a discussion on ways to build relationships between individuals with and without disabilities.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017: Planning for Life after Special Education in Massachusetts

Pamela Coveney and Hillary Dunn, Attorney’s from the Disability Law Center (DLC) Education Team, will share specific suggestions on how to use the IEP process to develop comprehensive post-secondary vision statements, develop appropriate transition services for students, understand various diploma options, and share best practices for family involvement. Reference will be made to the latest edition of the manual “Planning for Life after Special Education in Massachusetts” available on-line.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017: Leaving the School System – What Services are Available?

This presentation will provide an overview of the range of services that the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) and the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission provide to individuals after they leave the school system. Ed Wilson and Tracey Daigneau from the Southeast Region of the Department of Developmental Services, and a representative from the New Bedford area office of the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission will share information to assist individuals and families in determining which services might best meet their needs and how they can be arranged.

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