The Northeast Arc’s Transition Project is open to all students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) who would like to achieve community-based employment, post-secondary education, and/or independent living. A mentor-based model driven by participants is used. Each student or youth develops his or her own Person-Centered Life Plan, with support from family and staff, which includes individualized transition goals. Activities are based on the goals of the individual students or youth and include: assessing job readiness and fields of interest; job tours; job trials; internships; paid work; participating in support groups; joining a self-advocacy group; participating in community activities; strengthening money and computer skills; enhancing social skills through individualized activities or participation in our Spotlight program; pursuing post secondary educational opportunities, including tours and specialized orientation programs at local colleges such as UMass/Lowell, Middlesex Community College, and North Shore Community College. Participants are invited to learn independent living skills through Transition Overnights based on the Spotlight Overnight model, where they strengthen daily living skills such as doing laundry, making one’s own bed, planning, shopping for, preparing, and cleaning up after healthy meals, and community safety. Participants are also encouraged to attend the Life Quest educational series through which they learn about resources available to help meet their transition goals, and meet adults with disabilities who have successfully made their own transitions.
Submitted by Northeast Arc.