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Beginner's Resources for Parenting Youth with Disabilities

Beginner's Resources for Parenting Youth with Disabilities
Special Books Special Kids 

The website, Special Books Special Kids is an educational resource for people from the disability community to parents, teachers, and service providers, and especially including those unfamiliar with disabled individuals. The organization's main mission is to normalize the diversity of the human condition. Interviews with individuals and families are conducted by a professional to provide insight into what it looks like to live with a specific disability. When entering the website, click on the Menu Icon in the top right corner and select Meet A Friend; this will bring you to a list of interviews done for each disability. 


Partners for Youth with Disabilities 

PYD’s goal is to create a world where young people with disabilities will be able to live with dignity and pride in who they are, and to lead self-determined lives filled with purpose. To make this happen, they help build the skills and abilities of young people with disabilities, and increase the inclusivity of workplaces, organizations, and communities. PYD empowers youth with disabilities to reach their full potential by providing transformative mentoring programs, youth development opportunities, and inclusion expertise. They motivate youth to reach their personal, educational, and career goals and guide organizations in becoming more inclusive. 


Massachusetts Office on Disability 

The Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD) provides information, guidance, and training on disability-related civil rights and obligations. Using their expert knowledge, they help people with disabilities understand their rights and opportunities to improve access. They also help cities, towns, places that serve the public, and state government agencies understand their accessibility obligations. A few of the features of this site are lists of resources to support in a variety of areas, trainings, and a calendar of events. 


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 

CDC’s mission is to promote the health and full participation in society by people with disabilities across the lifespan. CDC educates families, professionals, and the public by supporting training programs and conferences to exchange information and facilitate dialogue across a variety of health professions. There is basic information from what classifies as a disability or impairment, inclusion, and healthy living. And they also provide resources such as fact sheets, infographics, videos, webinars, and podcasts. 


The Americans with Disabilities Act 

The ADA protects people with disabilities from discrimination. They are a branch of the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division. Their website is separated into three categories: Topics, Resources, and Laws and Regulations. From answers to common questions to official legal documents, has everything you need to understand your rights and responsibilities under the ADA. This is also the place you would file an official complaint. There is also an ADA Information Line where people can call in with questions and concerns. 


Foster Parent Partner 

The YouTube Channel, Laura, Foster Parent Partner, is run by an experienced foster parent that has much knowledge in working with children in the custody of the state department. She helps new foster parents get started and navigate services, safety, and building families. Laura offers practical support for becoming a foster parent, trauma informed parenting, navigating foster care situations, and providing the confidence to get started on your journey. Her site offers videos and podcasts, and templates for documents to help you work with professionals, and she is available for 1:1 support through her Patreon website.