Services and Programs


 

Independent Living

Accessible Resources for Independence (ARI) is a Center for Independent Living (CIL), which is a non-residential, consumer controlled, community-based, cross-disability, non-profit organization. Along with the other 400 plus CILs in the United States, we are unique in that we are staffed and governed by people with disabilities and operate according to the philosophy that people with disabilities have the right to govern their own lives. We provide an array of services to people with ALL types of disabilities who live in Anne Arundel and Howard Counties.

The Independent Living philosophy stresses consumer (a person with a disability) control- the idea that people with disabilities are the best authorities on their own needs. They have crucial and valuable viewpoints to contribute and are worthy of equal access to services and programs. People with disabilities should have the opportunity to decide how to live, work, and take part in their communities, particularly in reference to services that powerfully affect their day-to-day lives and access to independence.

ADVOCACY SERVICES:​  empowering people with disabilities, improving state and local policies and creating more accepting communities.

INDEPENDENT LIVING SKILLS: ​ leading to independence are taught by ARI’s staff on topics like budgeting, safety, resume writing, completing applications and employment readiness.

INFORMATION AND REFERRAL: ​ ​helping callers with housing, technology, employment, legal issues and more. We also offer referrals to agencies and resources for planning and directing one’s own services.

PEER MENTORS with disabilities:  serving as role models while providing moral support and creative solutions for issues of life.

TRANSITION SERVICES: ​  guiding young adults with disabilities into higher education, the workforce and the greater community. ARI also helps people with disabilities move from nursing homes and other institutions back into the community and supports those at­risk to avoid entering.

            Support Broker Services

The self-directed option of the Community Pathways Waiver from the Developmental Disabilities Administration allows recipients the opportunity to self-direct services and supports in their own home or family home by managing their own staffing and budget. Individuals are supported by a service/resource coordinator, a support broker and a fiscal manager.

Supports Brokers act as person’s “Human Resource Department” and services provided may include:
-Assist in recruiting, hiring and terminating of staff
-Assist in managing the budget, supports, and services
-Supervise staff
-Review Time sheets
-Work with the DDA and Fiscal Management Service (FMS) on budget and employment issues
-Work with the Coordinator of Community Support in developing the Individual Plan

-Assure FMS receives required paperwork in order to pay the bills
Accessible Resources for Independence, Inc is now offering Support Brokerage Services through the Developmental Disabilities Administration to those in Howard and Anne Arundel Counties. Contact us to learn more today!

For more information, contact Joan Rumenap at 443-713-3917 or jrumenap@arinow.org.

            Veteran’s Directed Services

The VD-HCBS program provides Veterans the opportunity to self-direct their long-term supports and services and continue to live independently at home. Eligible Veterans manage their own flexible budgets, decide for themselves what mix of goods and services best meet their needs, and to hire and supervise their own workers. Through an Options Counselor, the Aging & Disability Network provides facilitated assessment and care/service planning, arranges fiscal management services, and provides ongoing options counseling and support to Veterans, their families and caregivers.

For more information, contact Samantha Lester at 443-713-3911 or slester@arinow.org.

 

            Pre-Employment Transition Services

Through the Division of Rehabilitation Services, ARI provides instruction in self-advocacy for youth ages 14-21. This program takes place
in a group setting where students learn about their rights, responsibilities, and how to request accommodations or services and supports needed during the transition from secondary to postsecondary education and employment.

To learn more, contact Jill Pierce, Transition Specialist for DORS at Jill.Pierce@maryland.gov

 

            Benefits Counseling

ARI provides Benefits planning to clients of the Division of Rehabilitation Services who are Social Security Administration beneficiaries trying to return to work. Designated and approved staff provide counseling to beneficiaries about work incentives and assistance services to support beneficiaries in their efforts to join the workforce. ARI, as part of the Maryland Work Incentives Network, provides benefits counseling services to Howard County Social Security beneficiaries. Designated staff provides direct work incentives planning and assistance services to beneficiaries who meet SSA’s guidelines for receiving Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA) services to assist them in their employment efforts; support beneficiaries in retaining/sustaining meaningful employment at significant earnings levels and improve their economic security; as well as
any follow-up support that is needed after the original services are provided.


Assistive Technology

Independent Living Assistive Technology

The Independent Living Assistive Technology (ILAT) program assists eligible individuals with significant physical and mental disabilities living in Anne Arundel and Howard Counties to live independently at home in the community. Architectural modifications to a residence of an eligible individual may be authorized to the extent necessary to facilitate entry and exit to the residence, access to bathroom facilities, and access within the residence. Vehicular modifications are limited to removable aids such as Spinner knobs, Hand controls, Wheelchair lifts, and Pedal extenders. Assistive Technology includes: Aids for Daily Living (e.g., bathing and toileting equipment), Environmental Control Units (ECU), Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC), Hearing Aides and other devices the Medicaid or other insurers will not provide.

Individuals may become consumers of the ILAT Program if they meet the following eligibility standards:

  • Are a Anne Arundel or Howard County resident
  • Have a significant disability in any age group
  • Meet a financial needs test and provide a portion of matching funds
  • Seek to live more independently

For more information, contact Betsy Hein at 410-636-2274 or bhein@arinow.org.

Portable Ramp Loan Program

Maryland Department of Disabilities Technology Assistance Program’ Statewide Portable Ramp Access Project (SPRAP) loans out a variety of portable ramps. For ease of consumer access and pick-up, the portable ramps for Howard and Anne Arundel County are housed at Accessible Resources for Independence.

The Statewide Portable Ramp Access Project loans portable ramps of varying lengths and types, including threshold ramps (for small steps in and around a house), modular ramps ranging from 4 to 12 feet, multi-fold van ramps, and more. Marylanders will now be able to borrow a ramp for up to 120 days while additional home and vehicle accessibility solutions are identified.

Consumers will return the ramp after their short-term need is met or once they have identified funding for a permanent structure, and the ramp is loaned out again to another individual.

This project is partially funded by the Reeve Foundation which is committed to supporting organizations that seek to improve the quality of life for people living with paralysis.

Ramp loan requests should be directed to Jim McCarthy at 1-800-832-4827 or mdtap@mdtap.org.

Assistive Technology Demonstration Library

Equipment demonstrations are guided by an assistive technology specialist and provide hands on, in depth exploration and discussion of specific devices and features geared to the individual’s identified needs.   Demonstrations are available for people with disabilities as well as family members and service providers so that they learn more about general or specific types of assistive technology.  Demonstrations are provided free of charge.

To set up a time, contact Betsy Hein at 410-636-2274 or bhein@arinow.org.

            Nursing Facility Outreach

Under contract with Maryland Department of Disabilities (MDOD), Accessible Resources for Independence, Inc. staff visit 20 nursing facilities across Anne Arundel and Howard counties on a monthly basis to provide outreach and support to all residents who may be interested in transitioning to community living. Our staff visit with nursing facility residents, their family members as well as staff to provide information and resources on accessing community services. We find that when people have an opportunity to learn from a peer who has experienced moving from a nursing facility back to the community there is a greater comfort in exchanging information.

While all residents are eligible to receive support and resources from our staff about community living, only residents with Long Term Care or Community Medicaid are eligible for application assistance for Medicaid community based long-term supports and services, including Community First Choice and the Home and Community Based Options Waiver.

Both programs provide community services and supports to enable older adults and people with disabilities to live independently in their own homes. Available services may include: personal assistance services, assisted living, environmental assessments, accessibility adaptations, supports planning, transition services, nurse monitoring and more.

For more information, contact Samantha Lester at 443-713-3911 or slester@arinow.org.