Welcome to Integrated Living Opportunities!

ILO Family Workshops

Planning for the future of the family with special needs can be a challenging and daunting task.

At the ILO Community Group, our Family Workshop Series is designed to provide families with the information and tools needed to make the right decisions at every step of the journey towards independent living. All of the individuals that deliver these workshops are experts in their field, and some presenters are also parents/guardians of individuals with disabilities and members of ILO. As a result, they are able to offer both professional and personal insight on each topic.

Workshop Topics

ILO Community Group and the Importance of the Community Builder

Presented by Debbie Fickenscher, ILO Board Member, Parent; Maedi Tanham Carney and one to two other parents of self-advocates in ILO.

As one of the workshops in our series, ILO Community Group and the Importance of the Community Builder introduces families to the Integrated Living Opportunities (ILO) organization, our definition of community, and our community building philosophy. During this presentation, attendees will learn why ILO created the Community Group and its purpose of having families be part of ILO who are not ready to go through the training. As well, attendees will learn how to use this group to its maximum potential and get the most out of it for your family and family member with disabilities. We also introduce the concept of the Community Builder, a job unique to ILO, and explain the work that the Community does to help self-advocates build relationships, create personal and professional support networks, and integrate into their own communities and neighborhoods.

Rent vs Buy Mortgages: Fannie Mae Program

Presented by Glen Lazovick, VP of Residential Lending, Apex Homes, ILO Board Member

As an expert in residential lending at a prominent mortgage broking company, Glen is well equipped to present to parents on the financial options available to individuals with disabilities and their families. Glen will present on the various options available for rental or purchase of homes, through the Fannie Mae program. Rent vs Buy Mortgages: Fannie Mae Program explains this program and how a parent can be considered the owner or occupant on a loan that can be used to purchase a home for an individual with developmental disabilities.

Navigating the Financial World of the Family with Special Needs (Special Needs Planning)

Presented by Maedi Tanham Carney, CFP®, CWIC, Founder, President and CEO of ILO, Founder and Owner of M&L Special Needs Planning, LLC

Special Needs financial planners are often asked, “What’s the key to special needs planning?” Well, there is no easy answer to that question. Each family is unique, with individual goals and challenges, resources and expenses. It is impossible to come up with a one size fits all approach.

This workshop does, however, provide valuable financial planning information and tips that will benefit all families with special needs. Families that attend can then take that information and apply to their own unique situations, to plan for their own financial futures. As well as providing families with information needed to financially plan for the future, the workshop serves another important purpose: it covers topics that can often be uncomfortable to consider, but are essential to any sort of long term financial or legal plan. For example, the workshop covers providing for the individual with special needs after the parents are gone, i.e. through insurance concepts, special needs trusts, and housing opportunities.

Supported Decision Making and the Able Account

Presented by Jonathan Martinis, Senior Director for Law and Policy, Burton Blatt Institute and the Project Director, National Resource Center for Supported Decision Making

What is supported decision making, and why is it a preferable alternative to guardianship? How does supported decision making change the way people view the rights of individuals with disabilities, and how can the process of supported decision making protect these rights? What is an ABLE account, and how can individuals with disabilities use it to their greatest advantage? Jonathan Martinis delivers an incredibly informative presentation that answers all of these questions, and also provides insight on how supported decision making and the ABLE account can be options for your family member with disabilities. (Note: for more information on supported decision making, please visit ILO’s blog Supported Decision Making: A Discussion.)

Developmental Disabilities Administration in Maryland, and Washington, D.C.

Presented by Ian Paregol, Executive Director of DC Coalition of Disability Service Providers, ILO Board Member

This presentation offers information about the Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) in Washington, D.C. and Maryland. Ian Paregol (presenter) provides a background on these important government agencies, and offers information on the different waiver services that are provided under this department. In addition, services offered by the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA), and the Department of Rehabilitation Services (DORS) are discussed. Essentially, this presentation helps to demystify the process of obtaining waivers, services and benefits under DDA, RSA, and DORS.

Estate Planning Issues for Families with Special Needs

Presented by Tanya Harvey, Wills, Trusts & Estates Attorney at Loeb & Loeb.

Estate Planning Issues for Families with Special Needs provides information and advice that you need to complete the estate planning process for your special needs family. Throughout the presentation, key elements of estate planning as well as various planning documents (i.e. wills, trusts, power of attorneys, living wills, HIPPA, etc.) will be defined and discussed. The workshops will also place a particular focus on the specifics of planning for the family with special needs. Topics such as guardianship, the establishment and funding of special needs trusts, government benefits, funding options, etc. will be discussed. Those who attend this workshop will leave with a clear understanding of what needs to be done in terms of legal and estate planning to ensure the protection and continued security of their family with special needs after they are gone.

ILO & Building Communities

Presented by Debbie Fickenscher, ILO Board Member, Ginny MacDonald and Donna White, ILO Participating Family Member

The ILO & Building Communities workshop delves right down into the very heart of ILO, and presents to attendees the essence of our organization: our community building philosophies. During the course of this presentation we explore questions such as, “what does community mean to ILO? What is our definition of community? How is our definition of community, and our approach to community, different and unique? How does ILO build and strengthen communities in order to ensure the greatest independence for self-advocates? This presentation also delves into the unique characteristics that make ILO so special. Families that attend this presentation will learn about ILO, and will take away the knowledge and ideas needed to start building communities for their self-advocates from the ground up.

We will be adding different workshops in 2018.

Workshops Schedule

Each of Community Group’s Family Workshops are offered at different times during the year. We will be posting the schedule in November 2017 with the first presentation in January 2018. Please stay tuned.