Resources in Maryland
Maryland State Services
Developmental Disabilities Administration of Maryland - The mission of the Developmental Disabilities Administration is to provide leadership to assure the full participation of individuals with developmental disabilities and their families in all aspects of community life. In addition, DDA's goal is to promote their empowerment to access quality supports and services necessary to foster personal growth, independence and productivity.
In addition to the state-level resources, each Maryland school district has an Infants & Toddlers Program (sometimes in conjunction with a county health department), for parents who are concerned about their child's development. Infants & Toddlers serves children from birth to age 3, and a similar program serves children ages 3 to 5, to help with a child's transition from early intervention to his or her local school system. Additionally, each school system has a Partners for Success Center, whose goal is to increase parental information, knowledge, and involvement in the special education decision-making process. These centers may also offer a lending library, IEP support, special eduation resources, and newsletters. Contact your local school system to find out more.
Maryland Infants and Toddlers Program - The Maryland Infants and Toddlers Program/Preschool Services Branch provides oversight and support to local early intervention systems and local school system preschool special education programs for children with disabilities from birth through age five.
Support Groups and Local Information
Autism Society of America - "The mission of the Autism Society of America is to promote lifelong access and opportunity for all individuals within the autism spectrum, and their families, to be fully participating, included members of their community. Education, advocacy at state and federal levels, active public awareness and the promotion of research form the cornerstones of ASA's efforts to carry forth its mission."
Pathfinders for Autism - Pathfinders for Autism is a parent sponsored, non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of individuals with autism and their families.
One World Center for Autism, Prince George's County
DC Autism Parents (DCAP) - The Mission of DC Autism Parents is to improve the lives of all affected by autism in the Washington, DC Metropolitan area through advocacy, education, support, services, and research in order to promote community inclusion and awareness."
- Center for Autism and Related Disorders (CARD) - The Center for Autism and Related Disorders (CARD) at Kennedy Krieger Institute is a multi-faceted, multidisciplinary program that weds research, assessment, therapeutic, community outreach and training goals all related to individuals with Pervasive Developmental Disorders and their families.
Abilities Network - Abilities Network has many services, including: 1) Project ACT (All Children Together), which provides child care centers, Head Start programs, family care providers and classrooms with support in fostering school success and healthy development for all children. One related program is the Autism Inclusion Project. 2) Autism Services enables individuals with autism to function as meaningfully and independently as possible in their homes and community, while providing their families with the strategies and resources necessary to assist their children in reaching their maximum potential. Autism Services provides family training, transition planning into adult services, and after school therapeutic integration programming.
Family NET Works - The most comprehensive online resource for disability-related information and supports specific to the needs of Maryland families that include a member with a disability. This is an ever-changing, interactive site designed to empower families across the state to share, discover and connect with one another.