Nonprofit Agency to Observe National Autism Acceptance Month in April
Lifeworks, a nonprofit human services provider that supports people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, announced today – the first day of National Autism Acceptance Month – that it is expanding its community-based autism services to include adult autism support in 40 communities in the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) Boston Metro Region, in addition to its existing youth and family autism services in Newton and parts of Norfolk county.
Lifeworks will establish an Adult Autism Support Center within its West Roxbury office that will help individuals and families navigate available autism-related services, provide workshops and caregiver training, and participate in enriching social and recreational activities.
“It’s a privilege to expand our autism support services in the DDS Metro Boston Region,” said Daniel Sullivan, Vice President of Quality and Community Services at Lifeworks. “We look forward to providing our comprehensive supports and services as we establish new community connections and partnerships.”
As part of this effort, Lifeworks will appoint an Assistant Director of Adult Services, add two new adult autism support specialists, and form new collaborations with advocacy organizations, employers, law enforcement and other community partners.
Lifeworks has a long history of providing autism supports and its Family Autism Center based at its headquarters in Westwood has grown to serve nearly 1,000 individuals in the Newton/South Norfolk area. Under its new DDS contract, Lifeworks will now provide Adult Autism Support Center services in the following DDS areas:
- Greater Boston – Boston, Brookline, Chelsea, Revere, Winthrop
- Charles River West – Belmont, Cambridge, Somerville, Waltham, Watertown
- Middlesex West – Ashland, Dover, Framingham, Holliston, Hopkinton, Hudson, Marlborough, Natick, Northborough, Sherborn, Southborough, Sudbury, Wayland, Westborough
- Newton/South Norfolk – Canton, Dedham, Foxborough, Medfield, Millis, Needham, Newton, Norfolk, Norwood, Plainville, Sharon, Walpole, Wellesley, Weston, Westwood, Wrentham
Lifeworks will now support the entire age range of individuals with autism: the family program supports children and youths and the adult program supports those ages 18 and older. In addition to the supports offered by these two programs, Lifeworks also provides case management for the DDS Autism Waiver Program. This program helps eligible children remain in their homes and actively participate in their communities through in-home behavioral services and funding for community programs & safety items.
As part of its celebration of National Autism Acceptance Month in April, Lifeworks will participate in the 16th annual Advocates for Autism of Massachusetts (AFAM) Autism Advocacy Day virtual program on Wednesday, April 7. Advocacy efforts will highlight the dedication of staff to the individuals and families they supported during the most difficult periods of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Since 1954, Lifeworks and its predecessors, Lifeworks Inc. and The Arc of South Norfolk, have served the towns of Norfolk County and beyond by providing support to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities through advocacy, empowerment and opportunity. The Westwood-based nonprofit organization serves more than 2,300 individuals from communities in the Greater Boston, MetroWest, Norfolk County and Attleboro areas through a wide variety of services and programs, including employment services, residential supports, day programs and a broad range of family & community supports. For more information, visit www.lifeworksarc.org.