Living Large is for Everyone

Posted by Patty Manko on Thu, Jun 25, 2015 @ 04:50 PM

A Dream Job is for Everyone

These parents gave their daughter a birthday present every kid in the neighborhood will enjoy -- and be jealous of! 



Sports are for Everyone

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James, his pal Mike and their siblings at the Powerlifting event. Massachusetts Special Olympics, June 6, 2015 


Dance is for Everyone


marc3ada-fuxDancing with Maria, is a documentary film telling the story of Maria Fux, a former prima ballerina, who developed a dance therapy method designed to teach people with all tyoes of disabilites including blind students, deaf students, teenagers with Down syndrome, and persons dealing with psychological stress to dance.  Maria, at the age of 93, practices her own philosophy, still teaching students and working through her own limitations that have been brought on by age. Read a profile of Maria and this incredible film in Time online here.


TBT (Throw-back Thursday): from our 2012 newsletter, Friendship is for Everyone, about the Real Friends Project.


Tags: friendship

Planning for Life after Special Education in Massachusetts

Posted by Patricia Manko on Thu, Jan 10, 2013 @ 03:19 PM

spec needs teen

A Full Life AHEAD

Massachusetts Families Organizing for Change (MFOFC), in partnership with Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress (MDSC), will host a series of monthly workshops for parents and guardians of young adults with a disability.  The series will focus on transition, employment, housing and other topics that will help to give them interdependent full lives in their community.

Please join the first workshop on

Wednesday, January 30, 2013  

     “Planning for Life after Special Education

 in Massachusetts”


                                                          7:00 – 9:00 PM

MDSC Office 

20 Burlington Mall Road -- Suite 261

Burlington, MA 01803


Pamela Coveney Senior Attorney, Co-Team Leader of the Disability Law Center (DLC) Education Team, will discuss the several substantial topics included in the latest edition of “Planning for Life after Special Education in Massachusetts”.  Read and download this free manual at


This workshop will identify specific suggestions on how to develop comprehensive post-secondary vision statements, IEPs and transition plans, developing appropriate transition services for students, knowing various diploma options, best practices for family involvement and more.

Please RSVP to

** Mark your calendars** 

The next two workshop dates will be scheduled for February 20 and March 20.


Tags: Housing, Special Needs Financial Planning, friendship, disability legislation

Siblings and a Letter of Intent

Posted by Patricia Manko on Thu, Nov 08, 2012 @ 05:18 PM

describe the imageParents should make a point to complete the Letter of Intent to document the important aspects of your child’s life. Share it with the future caretakers today, including siblings and make it a living document.  Don’t just leave it for them after you are gone.

 Determining Roles for Siblings to Play

 A pragmatic approach is an effective means to define a role for siblings. This approach can utilize assigning defined responsibilities.

Responsibilities may be shared.  Tasks and roles may be shared, which will allow a sibling to contribute without feeling overwhelmed that they have to be the ” everything” or “IT” person in the family.

Partner with a professional. Siblings can partner with experienced special needs planning professionals to help them provide the best solutions for their brother or sister.

describe the imageSome functional roles siblings may play:

Caregiver, Guardian

Health care proxy, Power of attorney,

Conservator, Trustee, Trust advisor

 Investment manager, Tax preparer,

 Bookkeeper to help pay bills,

 Representative payee for  SSI


                  Just be a brother  or sister!

For more information, click below to attend a presentation of No Sibling Left Behind or Planning is a Family Affair

Contact us for  further information



Tags: siblings, Letter of Intent, friendship, guardianship, special needs Letter of Intent

Newsletter featuring Friendship and People with Disabilities

Posted by Patricia Manko on Tue, Jul 10, 2012 @ 01:37 PM

Please click on our logo to view our Quarterly newsletter .

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Featured this month: Friendship is important for everyone

  • The Real Friends Project

  • Resources for establishing and supporting friendships for people with disabilities

Tags: Special Needs Financial Planning, friendship

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