The Virginia Board for People with Disabilities (VBPD) announced today that The Arc of Northern Virginia will receive one of five new federal grant awards, administered by the Board, totalling more than $448,000. The grants are designed to support local, regional, and statewide efforts to encourage inclusive communities and result in sustainable systems change to improve polices and services affecting people with disabilities in the Commonwealth.
“The Virginia Board for People with Disabilities is delighted to be working with these great organizations,” said Heidi Lawyer, the Board’s executive director. “The Board is committed to improving opportunities for people with disabilities to access the services and supports they need to live integrated, meaningful, and productive lives in their communities. These grants support the Board’s mission and the Governor’s focus on improving community living for all people with disabilities.”
The Arc of Northern Virginia will receive $130,000 to launch a program called My Choice Virginia: Supported-Decision Making for People with Developmental Disabilities. The one and a half year grant will be a partnership between The Arc of Northern Virginia and the Burton Blatt Institute of Syracuse University. The project will focus on empowering people with developmental disabilities to use Supported-Decision Making as an alternative to guardianship to increase their self-determination.
“The Arc of Northern Virginia is thrilled to be awarded grant funds from the Virginia Board for People with Disabilities,” said Rikki Epstein, Executive Director. “We hope this project will leave people with developmental disabilities more empowered, educated on their rights and options, and better in control of their own lives.”