Living and Working in the Community for Adults With a Developmental Disability



If you’re an adult with a developmental disability, you have options for living and working in the community. These services can be provided at home, in a residential setting, or in a day service program.

These services can be funded through a Medicaid Waiver or a Medicaid State Plan. They’re tailored to the individual’s needs and based on a person-centered plan.


People with developmental disabilities are one of the fastest-growing groups in the United States. It’s not surprising that they face unique challenges in the healthcare system. For example, less than half of graduating medical students have training in caring for adults with intellectual and developmental disability support Melbourne (IDDs).

As a result, they often have more complex needs than other groups. They may need a residential program to live independently, or they may require more intensive round-the-clock services that are tailored to their level of need.

The Foundling offers a number of programs to support adults with developmental disabilities, including counseling and information/referral services; home care services; and a specialty clinic offering a full range of primary care, behavioral health, nutrition, and socialization and recreation services. The organization also offers a hotline that assists callers in finding mental health and substance abuse services. As with any house, one’s health and well-being is built upon a solid foundation of support and resources.


Children who have developmental disabilities, including autism, intellectual disability, and other conditions, require specialized healthcare and special education services. Services can be provided by either private providers or government programs, depending on the diagnosis.

Many state and local laws make sure that children with developmental disabilities have access to the supports, services, and resources they need to thrive. These resources include services for infants and toddlers in early intervention (EI), special education services for preschoolers, school-age children, social benefits, and many more.

For example, many New York City children with developmental delays are eligible for free Early Intervention services that provide evidence-based physical, cognitive, and social therapies to improve their ability to learn, play, grow, and talk. Other children with disabilities may qualify for services through the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). CSOC provides Developmental Disability Family Support Services to uncompensated caregivers who may be eligible but are unable to meet their child’s financial needs.


Those who have intellectual disabilities often experience social challenges during the adolescent years. This can lead to feelings of isolation and social disconnection.

While most research in adolescence considers normative patterns of adolescent development, very few have considered the developmental trajectories of adolescents with devel opmental disabilities. Nevertheless, investigations into such patterns are critical to the development of better interventions for adolescents with disabilities.

Adolescents with developmental disabilities have to confront difficult questions about how they create a sense of self, build a peer network, and engage in agentic behaviors. These are important questions, particularly given the many cognitive and social difficulties that often accompany these adolescents’ transitions to adulthood (Keating 2004).

The adolescent transition to adulthood can be a stressful time for young adults with disabilities and their families. Families may have difficulty recognizing that it is normal for their adoles cent to make decisions for themselves, even with the support of their parents and other family members. Educating families about their child’s rights, especially as they approach the age of 18, is essential.


For many adolescents with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), the transition from school to a productive adult life is not for the faint of heart. There are many resources and services that can help them on their journey.

The New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities has a strong network of agencies and programs that can help individuals with IDD of any age. They can provide the following: a slew of support networks, information and referral resources, community inclusion strategies, home and family advocacy, employment opportunities and more. The OPWDD Front Door is a person centered approach to disability services that promotes individual choice and autonomy, and a healthy work force.

The best part? It’s all free! Click here to find out more. You can also contact your local OPWDD offices. You can use your new knowledge to make a difference in the quality of your life and that of a loved one.

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