News and Events for Individuals with Disabilities

Posted by Patty Manko on Thu, Feb 06, 2014 @ 06:03 PM

the arc resized 600Housing Bond Bill signed into law by Governor Patrick

Governor Deval Patrick recently signed a housing bond bill (H3727) into law which will authorize $1.4 billion in housing assistance in 11 new line items, and three sets of funding directly relate to people with disabilities:

  • $55M will be allocated to a program of loan guarantees or interest subsidies to assist homeowners with physical disabilities with making home modifications to their primary residence to allow them to live independently in the community. The money will be available on a sliding scale that relates the homeowner’s income and assets to the cost of the modification. Both the MA Commission for the Blind (MCB) and the MA Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) will assist in the development of guidelines for this program.
  • $47M will be allocated to loans for the development of community-based housing or supportive housing foe individuals with intellectual disabilities or mental illness through the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). Preference will be given to non-profit organizations by prioritizing funds for integrated housing as defined by agencies such as the Department of Developmental Services (DDS), Department of Mental Health (DMH), DHCD, and MRC. 10M of the total will be allocated to a pilot program to serve mentally ill homeless individuals.
  • $38M will be loaned out for the development and redevelopment of community-based housing or supportive housing for persons with disabilities who are institutionalized or at risk of being institutionalized who are not eligible under the first programmentioned above ($55M). This housing will be developed in conjunction with the Executive Office of Health and Human Services and MRC. 
  • To read the full article, click on the Arc logo above.
From Autism Housing Pathways-
Dancing with celebrities resized 600

autism eats resized 600



Autism Eats


Come join the first Autism Eats Family Dinner on

February 25, 2014 from 6:00pm to 8:30pm at

Andolini's Restaurant at 19 Essex St. in Andover, MA

Going out to dinner with a family member who has autism can be a stressful event. Behaviors can be unpredictable, other diners may be disturbed and the restaurant staff may not know the best way to service your table.

Autism Eats provides Autism-friendly non-judgmental environments for family dining, socializing and connecting with others who share similar joys and challenges.

Come and enjoy dinner out with your family!

Visit for more information and to purchase tickets for your family buffet dinner


Sensoryoverload lores resized 600ReelAbilities, the Boston Disability Film Festival-1/30-2/6/2014


 The Boston Jewish Film Festival will present the 2nd annual ReelAbilities Boston Disabilities Film Festival, showcasing films about the lives of people with different disabilities from a variety of communities.
The Festival kicks off on Thursday, Jan. 31 at the West Newton Cinema and will continue with presentations through Sunday, Feb. 5 at the West Newton Cinema and other locations in Boston, Springfield, and Hanover.  for further details about the films, click on the illustration above.



mdsc logo trans resized 600MDSC Annual Conference

Saturday, March 22, 2014

DCU Center, Worcester

Featuring several tracks:

        • General Session Workshops – Parents, family member and professionals will learn from expert speakers about how to help individuals with Down syndrome acquire the necessary skills to lead fuller, healthier, more independent lives.
        • Young Adults Workshops – Young adults with Down syndrome will have an opportunity to network and share experiences, strengthen their self-advocacy skills, and learn about the importance of leading a healthy life and building meaningful relationships. 
        • Brothers and Sisters Workshops – Siblings of people with Down syndrome will hear how other brothers and sisters deal with the joys and challenges inherent in being a sibling. Creates a forum for sharing stories and learning the importance of advocacy.
        • Education Workshops – Educators and parents will learn best practices for educating students with Down syndrome in an inclusive classroom, as well as the benefits of inclusion for all learners.
        • Click on the MDSC logo for further details.
Please contact us for more information.
Contact us

Tags: autism, news and events for people with disabilities, movies about people with disabilities

Pass the Popcorn: Movies of Interest

Posted by Patricia Manko on Thu, Apr 25, 2013 @ 01:38 PM

Best Kept Secret World Premiere

Please join The Arc of Massachusetts this Saturday, April 27 at 8 PM, at the Somerville Theatre for the world premiere of “Best Kept Secret,”  a documentary that provides a window into the world of a Newark, NJ public school teacher as she struggles to prepare her students with autism to survive in the brutal world that awaits them once they graduate.

This film has received a grant from the Sundance Institute and support from U.S. Senator Bob Mendendez.  

Watch the trailer



The Punk Syndrome

Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät (Pertti Kurikka's Name Day), a punk band from Finland, is the subject of the documentary "The Punk Syndrome," which won the SXGlobal Audience Award at this year's SXSW Film Festival.

The documentary provides a sincere and honest look at the lives of the four band members, who are all adults living with varying degrees of intellectual disabilities.

The band is made up of Pertti Kurikka (guitar), Kari Aalito (vocals), Sami Helle (bass) and Toni Välitalo (drums).

The band"s members, Pertti, Kari, Toni and Sami, play their music with a lot of attitude and pride. We follow these professional musicians on their journey from obscurity to popularity. We watch them fight, fall in love and witness long days in the recording studio and on tour. It’s a film about the essence of punk - it's a story of  people with disabilities rebelling against the mainstream.

 Watch the trailer below.

 Caution- the content contains profanity and images that may be offensive to some viewers.  The band's message however, comes across loud and clear in any language.


Tags: movies about people with disabilities

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