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LAUNCHED: New York Housing Resource Center (HRC) for People with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities

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LAUNCHED: New York Housing Resource Center (HRC) for People with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities

Last week, Carol Napierski of NYSACRA and John Maltby of the Westchester Institute for Human Development announced their newest online resource for housing in New York State:

"The New York Housing Resource Center (HRC) for People with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities was developed by NYSACRA with funds received through the Balancing Incentive Program grant (BIP). The HRC will act as a clearinghouse for information and resources for housing professionals across the state and will help to foster collaboration between and among the housing industry and related professions, service provider agencies and people with I/DD. The HRC will provide all housing stakeholders with technical assistance on housing matters and community training for people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and their families."

NYSACRA is a catalyst and leading advocate for people who have developmental disabilities and organizations that support them.

The Westchester Institute for Human Development (WIHD) addresses the needs of the community through professional education programs, technical assistance, research, and dissemination of information.


A couple of thoughts:

  • Combined with Dr Jo Anne Schneider'a "Housing Options" report, we are starting to see a roadmap of options and paths that we can explore. 
  • There is a Housing Navigator section on the HRC website that I am exploring. I have access as I am a Housing Navigator in New York State. Most of the resources are public for now and feel free to ask me any questions that may be missing. 
  • Carol and John have stated that this HRC website is a work in process, so again, feel free to ask questions. 
  • OPWDD - There are now many readers from OPWDD of this Blog and we need more interaction with them. This is a complicated process at best, and we need conversations directly with them rather than through third parties. There are many things that I "think they are thinking" at this point, but we need to get to the "next level" with OPWDD to see where we are going. 

Again, a great start for a potentially great resource, and we need to get to the next level of conversation. 

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Hawthorne Foundation - "Families United: Exploring Housing and Self-Direction"

Hawthorne Foundation - "Families United: Exploring Housing and Self-Direction"

Hawthorne Executive Director Tina Covington in their new Financial Intermediary space. 

Hawthorne Executive Director Tina Covington in their new Financial Intermediary space. 

Last week, The Hawthorne Foundation hosted a meeting for roughly 25 families that are looking for long-term housing and community options for their Developmentally Disabled adult children. Dustin Sweeney, my 19 year old Autistic son, has been at Hawthorne Country Day School for years. However, many parents at the meeting were Westchester families new to Hawthorne. 

The goals were:

  • Explore Self-Direction Housing, Community, and Adult options with guest speaker Baturu Mboge of the Westchester Institute for Human Development
  • Introduce Hawthorne's New Financial Intermediary (FI) and training center; and
  • Introduce Hawthorne's staff which included:
    • Tina Covington - Executive Director
    • Eileen Bisordi - Hawthorne Founder
    • Fay Dohman - Coordinator of Self Direction and Community Services

Baturu Mboge was very knowledgeable about the all the changes in the market, and this diagram below shows the high level view of the shifting sands of programming from Agency Based to Self-Directed models. The good news is: decisions are being made by parents, and this creates a more responsive market for adult services. The bad news is: questions of "what happens when the parents die?" remain. 

The shift from "Agency Based" to "Self-Directed" models. 

The shift from "Agency Based" to "Self-Directed" models. 

Hawthorne has made a bold move in creating and funding this new Financial Intermediary (FI) space for families. It is always hard to predict where we are going in the New York State OPWDD market, but administrative services could easily be streamlined into one agency. The FI can work as a watchdog over money and budgets away from programming, jobs, and housing decisions. In this new era of Self-Direction, we must think differently and I really credit the Hawthorne staff and Board Director Jackie Ceonzo for starting this initiative. They are embracing the new Self-Direction models in the OPWDD world. For more information, contact:


Fay Dohman - Hawthorne Coordinator of Self Direction and Community Services

200 Clearbrook Road, Suite 114, 

Elmsford, NY 10523
Office - (914) 592-8526 ext. 3046