FCSN // Newsletter // 2014 // Fall 2014 // New Projects Strengthen Our Mission
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New Projects Strengthen Our Mission

The Federation is proud to announce several important new grant awards that will help us maintain and grow our identity as a parent-run advocacy organization. Through these initiatives, the Federation will steadily increase its multicultural competence, and expand our collaborative partnerships with educational and healthcare professionals at every level; national, state and local, to fulfill its mission in 2015 and beyond.

Federation becomes a United Way Partner: We are pleased to announce that we are now a United Way partner agency! Support from the United Way will assist us in ensuring that families who are raising children with special needs have the information, support and training they need to help their children achieve successful outcomes in school and in their communities. Additionally, it will support our work in keeping families of children with special needs informed regarding key issues and topics in the field.

Parent Training and Information Center for Massachusetts (MA PTIC) receives a new five year award from the Office of Special Education Programs at the US Department of Education. The MA PTIC at the Federation believes in the potential of all children as echoed in IDEA, and under this award will build on its 40 years of experience supporting families of children with special needs. The MA PTIC will continue to meet the information and training needs of parents and professionals so they can continue as lifelong partners in the education of their children with special needs, and will additionally provide support and training to families and self-advocates in order supporting young adults in their transition to post-secondary education, employment, and independent living.

The LINK Center: Connecting to Your Future is one of only six national grants awarded under the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services/ US Department of Education. This new project will establish a Parent Training and Information Center on Transition to assist individuals with disabilities and their families to participate more effectively with professionals in meeting the vocational, independent living and rehabilitation needs of individuals with disabilities. The new LINK Center will provide technical assistance and training to help individuals achieve their employment and independent living goals and will work closely with the Federation’s Parent Training and Information Center (PTIC) to provide families with much-needeed information about transition, vocational rehabilitation, independent living and other adult services.

The Massachusetts Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs Systems Integration Project. As a collaborative partner with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, we will join with state agencies, families, healthcare providers, community organizations and others to increase the number of families who receive integrated health care through a family-centered medical home approach. This partnership will be supported by Massachusetts Family Voices at the Federation, which is the MA chapter of a national network of families and friends speaking on behalf of children with special health care needs to improve access to health care services and supports for families of children with special health care needs.