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      "Circles of Support" Make Transitioning to Independent Living Easier For Minnesotans With Disabilities

      Posted on October 17, 2012 at 10:58 AM

      New partnerships are making a home of their own possible for hundreds of Minnesota citizens with disabilities- as over 500 people since 2009 have said welcome home to the new possibilities of independent living. 

      These new possibilities have been created through the Housing Access Services (HAS), which is a partnership of The Arc of Minnesota and the Minnesota Department of Human Services. For many adults with disabilities, living at home or living in a group home is no longer the right fit. They desire the same independent lifestyles that many take for granted. HAS helps adults with disabilities navigate many of the logistical problems with reaching independence, such as finding housing, filling out paperwork and financial documents, moving in, and finding access to jobs and transportation.

      HAS and clients are not alone when roadblocks make the journey difficult. With Minnesota’s “Circles of Support” system, HAS works along with counties, families, and ARC Minnesota to resolve problems and keep their client at the center of everything they do. In this system, everyone works together to give their client their dreams, such as making sure their new home has amenities that pertain to their specific interests, such as a pool, social events, or room for gardening. By creating a good fit from the beginning, the clients will feel at home and comfortable in their new surroundings, while still having their circle of support available to provide help when needed.

      These new possibilities emphasize the transition Minnesota has made towards helping adults with disabilities the opportunity to live the kind of life they dream of- a dream brought that much closer to reality by the good work of clients in tandem with HAS.