Living Independently with a Disability: What Support is Available?
Living independently with a disability is sometimes a personal choice and other times it may be necessary due to lack of family or friend support. Either way, there are resources available to you. Make sure you know what they are and where to look for help if you need it.
Home and Community-based Services
There are many services you can use to get help around your home and be more active in the community. HCBS software is one way that people keep track of all the resources that may be available in their area.
HCBS is a form of long-term support and services that can help people living with disabilities. Instead of people just coming to your home or calling you every once in a while, HCBS will provide services that promote person-centered care.
The people care about you as an individual, not just a number. They often include house cleaning, meal delivery programs, transportation, adult day programs, case management, and safety checks.
It depends on the states you live in which services might be available. Certain services are federally mandated, and some states choose to add on extra services for their residents.
Cultural and spiritual support
One of the main areas of support is support groups. This will allow you to meet people who are in your community who also have a disability. Their disability may be the same as yours or very different. Either way, it allows you to meet inspirational people and get to know people who live around you.
HCBS will also be able to connect you to people who may be from the same place or have the same religion as you. This will allow you to feel better understood and allow you to connect to other people better because you have something in common.
The care manager assigned to you can also be from the same culture or religion as you so they can better understand what you need both medically and personally.
There are also areas for employment support. If you want to work and can, these services can help you find a job that works for your health and available hours. They will be able to help you plan an interview. They can also arrange transportation for you to the interview and the job if you decide to work there.
Some of these services also include resume building or taking you somewhere with internet access so you can look for jobs and submit applications.
Whether you want to get your GED or go back to college, some services can help you go back to school. They include application help and giving you study materials. They also provide transportation services to the school if you have an appointment or want to talk to someone from admissions.
They can also help you find financial services to help you pay for school or scholarship applications that you are eligible for. They can also help you talk to school representatives.
Day programs are a great way to get active within the community. They can give you a sense of belonging and let you meet people. Having friends and staying social is important for everyone because it keeps you motivated and will keep you from feeling isolated.
The day programs may also include workshops that can help you with your career or finances. Some programs are more centered on staying active or practicing a hobby such as painting. There are also programs for a variety of ages and interests.