Life Planning for Adults with Developmental Disabilities
A Guide for Parents and Family Members
Published by: New Harbinger Publications
Imprint: New Harbinger Publications
A Comprehensive Guide for Parents and Caregivers
As any parent or caregiver of an individual with developmental disabilities can tell you, planning for the future of an adult with intellectual disabilities, Cerebral Palsy, severe autism, or another such condition requires hard work and good advice. While complete independence and self-reliance is out of reach for many adults with developmental disabilities, a productive, stable, and enjoyable life is certainly possible. But government and private support for parents and disabled individuals is scattered and difficult to negotiate. This book is a comprehensive guide to resources you can use to help an adult child or other individual with developmental disabilities for whom you care.
The book begins by assessing the quality of life of the adult with a disability. It offers a wealth of suggestions for making that person's life even better. The book then focuses on long-term planning for the individual with a disability and helps answer the question, Who will take care of my child after I'm gone?•Learn effective ways to: Assess a disabled individual's strengths and need for support services
•Develop a plan to for building a busy and productive life
•Locate good housing and employment opportunities
•Gather a supportive team of caregivers Advocate for a disabled individual with community agencies
We all put off making plans sometimes, and it seems the more difficult the situation is, the more likely we have put off creating a plan. This clear and useful book helps families see that it is never too late to plan a better future for an adult with disabilities. Most of all, as a parent, I like the book because it is realistic. I believe many families will find the help they need here.
—Sue Swenson, executive director of the Arc of the United States and former commissioner for developmental disabilities during the Clinton administration
With a host of practical ideas, examples, and creative, do-able steps, Judith Greenbaum has used her experience as a parent and a professional to fashion a resource that is particularly useful for planning for the future. It will help families who too often have been the sole caregivers, but who now need others to know their sons and daughters as they do. Families need others to work in partnership with them in planning and shaping living, working, and caregiving relationships that form the foundation for meaningful lives. Greenbaum respects and honors the needs of everyone involved: parents, siblings, adult children with disabilities, and direct caregivers. She outlines an empowering path to address both the dreams and fears of a future none of us controls.
—Bill Gaventa, M.Div., is associate professor of pediatrics at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School/UMDNJ and director of community and congregational supports at the Elizabeth M. Boggs Center on Developmental Disabilities
For someone with developmental disabilities and for his or her parents, the world changes abruptly once that person graduates from school. Gone are guiding laws and procedures and guaranteed choices. The person with developmental disabilities and the family are essentially on their own, facing a jigsaw puzzle of possible services, with very few guarantees. Greenbaum's book is an enormous help in this venture, and I enthusiastically recommend it, not just for parents, but also for service providers trying to help in these crucial transitions. While Greenbaum is knowledgeable about the latest thinking in the disability field, she is neither biased nor dogmatic; her suggestions accommodate a great variety of family preferences and experiences.
—Martha Ziegler, national autism consultant with Youth Advocate Programs, Inc., and parent of an adult daughter with autism