Everyone needs to think about and plan for the future. To make a plan for the future, you need to think about and make choices about what you would like to do in the future.
You should talk with members of your family about how to make those things happen. You can build a team with your family, friends, and whomever else you want to invite to help you with your plan. You should also talk with your person-centered planning team or professionals who work with you on your Individual Support Plan (ISP). They can help give ideas about your plan. The ISP is a plan of support and training services for a person with I/DD over a 12-month period.
You should consider the following questions:
- Who are the important people in your life? Who are the key family and friends that support you in your life?
- Who are your doctors and other professionals who support you?
- Where do you want to live? Do you want to live with other people?
- What supports do you need to live where you want?
- What do you want to do during the day? Consider your work, educational, volunteer, and recreational options.
- Who do you want to be friends with? Who else is in your social circle?
- Do you need support making decisions? Who do you want to help you make those decisions?
- How are you going to pay for where you live, food, and other daily items you that need to buy?
- Are you eligible for or do you receive public benefits such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid?
To help achieve your plan, ask your family members, friends, and the people on your team to support you by taking on certain roles and responsibilities. Identify who will help you be the keeper of your dream.
If you think about these questions and make a plan, it will help you with having a better life outcome. These discussions with family, friends, and other people on your support team will improve your quality of life in the community.
Next, you will think about what you can do to make the things in your plan happen. Your plan may change over time as things in life change. For more help, please contact a chapter of The Arc or the state intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD) agency. Please note that chapters of The Arc vary in size and in the services they provide. If you need further assistance, please contact The Arc’s national office through our online form or by phone at 800-433-5255.
Be Your Own Advocate
Check out these resources to learn how you can become a better self-advocate: