ILO Insights

February 26, 2021

Hope is in the Air!

Maedi Tanham Carney
Founder & Executive Director, ILO

Little by Little We Start Moving Forward Together

In our recent family POD meetings not only have we discussed the challenges and successes of our loved ones venturing into independent living but recently we are also trying to help each other navigate signing up for, finding, and getting the vaccine that we know is so important to our folks with special needs.

If you have information that can help other families please email us at

In the meantime, try the CDC’s app.

We are truly “all in this together!”


Support healthy living for ILO self-advocates by donating to ILO’s activity fund.

March is National Nutrition Month

During this ‘new normal’ ILO is here to help YOUR family and SELF-ADVOCATE in every way possible.

ILO is here to help!

For ILO Community Group Members our program offerings include many additional free activities and events designed to stimulate self-advocate interactions with others and to foster independence.

Please encourage your self-advocate to join us for a Spirit Club Healthy Cooking segment every other Friday!

Ingredient list provided ahead of time. Check the ILO Calendar and GroupMe for details.

If you are not a member please consider joining the ILO Community Group.


Upcoming Events

ILO Community Group Parent Workshop: What is ILO?

ILO has a plan to help young adults with developmental disabilities successfully transition to independent living.

We successfully do this through our supportive communities.

Join us March 9th via Zoom to learn more. Register now.

In the meantime, view one of our videos: From Fear to Confidence

Fun and Engaging Virtual Self-Advocate Activities

Our Community Builders have prepared Fun and Engaging Virtual Self-Advocate Activities (last year we hosted over 300 of these events). This is a great way for self-advocates to build and grow interpersonal relationship skills while meeting new friends. Check the ILO Calendar and GroupMe for details.

  • Guy’s and Gal’s Groups
  • Current Events
  • Life Skills Training
  • Safaris
  • World Tours
  • Happy Hour
  • Spirit Club Healthy Cooking
  • Spirit Club Yoga
  • Spirit Club Workouts and more

Family POD Meetings

Meet and mingle virtually with other families in your area and learn about ILO highlights and upcoming events.


  • SAVE THE DATE – Bethesda Family POD Meeting, March 10th, 7:00-8:30 pm

Fundraising Events

Please save these dates and prepare to have fun! Look for some additional events we may add during the year and let us know if you have any suggestions for other fun fundraising events.

SAVE THE DATE – Our Fundraising Events are scheduled:

  • Bike to the Beach – July 30th
  • Hike, Bike & BBQ – September 25th
  • Giving Tuesday – November 30th

Life Skills Training Sessions

ILO’s monthly themed life-skills training sessions include everything from organizational skills to getting to know your community.


  • MARCH – Healthy Nutrition Month


Gregory – March 18

Chris – March 24

You don’t owe anyone perfection – just your best self!


FREE Spirit Club Classes

Thanks to our amazing ILO donors we are offering ALL ILO Community Group self-advocates* FREE access to:

Virtual Yoga*

Every Sunday

1:30-2:15 pm

Check your weekly GroupMe chat for the Zoom link

Weekly Workout*

Every Thursday

5:00-6:00 pm

Check your weekly GroupMe chat for the Zoom link

Cooking Lesson*

Every Other Friday

3:00-4:00 pm

Check your weekly GroupMe chat for the Zoom link and ingredients

*Participating self-advocates, or their families, must be members of the ILO Community Group and must sign a waiver before participation.

Go to: for more info or to join the ILO Community Group.

Check out ILO’s Own Ellie Carney – Spirit Club’s Member of the Month!

Read Ellie’s story on Instagram:

Are you the next Spirit Club

Member of the Month?


New Offering from ILO

Meet Phillip Lartigue

Manager of Employment Services at ARC DC

 We are really excited to share the wonderful news of a new partnership between ILO and the Arc of DC. Thanks to Carol Wheeler, we made a connection with Phil Lartigue at the Arc of DC regarding their services in the area of employment.

As of January 25th, working in partnership with the Arc of DC, Phil Lartigue is now ILO’s employment specialist.

The Arc of DC is also a vendor for RSA, so if a self-advocate has RSA, through your RSA case manager you can request the Arc of DC and Phil Lartigue for employment needs. The beauty here is RSA pays the fees and not the family via ILO.

If you are interested in hiring Phil as your self-advocate’s employment specialist, please contact Maedi Tanham Carney directly. Once you meet Phil, I know you will be as excited as we are with this connection. Your self-advocate will be working before you know it.

In the Know

ILO’s Initiatives to Support CDC Guidelines for the Disabled during Social Integration

NO Contact Rule

ILO will require any staff person who has tested positive for COVID-19 to negatively pass two (2) COVID-19 tests before contact with any ILO participant, family member, or other staff person. If a staff member has been in contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19, they must self-quarantine for 14 days.

Social Distancing and Masks

ILO staff will ensure that participants at any self-advocate gathering maintain social distancing of 6’ and that each person wears a mask.

Hand Washing Hygiene

ILO will encourage activity participants (staff, self-advocates, family, and guests) to wash their hands frequently (before, during, and after any event) and to carry hand sanitizer with them.

Disinfecting Where Possible

At any ILO gathering ILO staff will wipe down doorknobs, tabletops, and other surfaces with disinfectant wipes before and throughout the event or activity to the extent possible.

Safety and Wellness Training

ILO has trained self-advocates about safety issues including: emergency preparedness, having an emergency contact list, how to ask for help, calling 911, putting together a first aid and emergency kit, and dealing with emergencies. ILO will continue to review and reinforce this training on a regular basis.

Immediate Mediation if Symptomatic

ILO staff will contact family and/or caregivers immediately about any self-advocate who exhibits symptoms on COVID-19 and will help that self-advocate seek medical attention as quickly as possible.

The COVID-19 outbreak is a dynamic and unpredictable situation. ILO will adapt as needed.

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