State/National Organizations

This section accesses a multitude of State and National Organizations that provide information, support and research on a wide range of disabilities and medical conditions.
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Description: More than 50 million Americans currently live with some form of disability. In Virginia, this means that one of every five citizens will have a disability or know someone who does. Hence, our challenge is clear. The goal of the Partnership is to further the ability of individuals with disabilities to be fully included in their communities. The Partnership for People with Disabilities, an affiliate of the School of Education at Virginia Commonwealth University, is Virginia's only university...
Description: The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is the agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that leads public health efforts to advance the behavioral health of the nation. SAMHSA's mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America's communities. SAMHSA Strategic Initiatives help provide treatment and services for people with mental and substance use disorders, support the families of people with mental and substance...
Description: NCTIC works to eliminate the use of seclusion, restraints, and other coercive practices and to develop the knowledge base on trauma-informed care. Trauma-informed care is an approach to engaging people with histories of trauma that recognizes the presence of trauma symptoms and acknowledges the role that trauma has played in their lives. NCTIC facilitates the adoption of trauma-informed environments in the delivery of a broad range of services including mental health, substance use, housing,...
Description: Families are the enduring presence in the lives of young children with disabilities. This volume contains activities to support early care and education staff and families in developing positive relationships that support collaboration and family leadership. Session 1: Creating Bright Futures (Building Relationships with Families) Session 2: Listening to Families Session 3: When Concerns Arise: Learning from Families' Experiences Session 4: Getting...
Description: VDSS is one of the largest Commonwealth agencies, partnering with 120 local departments of social services, along with faith-based and non-profit organizations, to promote the well-being of children and families statewide. We proudly serve alongside 1,650 (state) and 8,500 (local) human services professionals throughout the Social Services System, who ensure that thousands of Virginia's most vulnerable citizens have access to the best services and benefits available to them.
Description: The mental health of our children is a natural and important concern for us all. The fact is, many mental disorders have their beginnings in childhood or adolescence, yet may go undiagnosed and untreated for years. We refer to mental disorders using different “umbrella” terms such as emotional disturbance, behavioral disorders, or mental illness. Beneath these umbrella terms, there is actually a wide range of specific conditions that differ from one another in their characteristics...
Description: Wherever you work, children come to you with gifts, curiosity, challenges, and needs.  They are small wonders, to be sure, and as full of diversity as society itself. And because disability is a natural part of life, it’s also likely that some of your little ones may have a disability or a developmental delay that can impact their learning and growth. As a child care provider or preschool teacher, you may even be among the first to notice a child’s difficulties or...
Description: The birth of a child is an exciting, life-changing event. A beautiful new baby comes to your house, family, and neighborhood. It is a time for celebration. But what happens when this new child has a disability? What if there are health problems? What if, as time goes by, it seems as if the child isn’t learning and progressing as quickly or easily as other children? What do you do? CPIR offers a suite of resource pages that can help you find answers and people who can...
Description: In drafting the provisions of IDEA, our nation’s special education law, Congress clearly contemplated that, at times, there would be disagreements between parents of children with disabilities and the school districts providing special education and related services to their children. While it is expected that parents and school personnel will work in partnership to ensure children with disabilities are provided appropriate services, there are times when the child’s parents and...
Description: Giving a child a home is a remarkable gift. This page is written for the families who’ve adopted children with disabilities (and without!) and those who offer them safe haven through fostering. It’s also written for those who work in state agencies or in private organizations who find foster homes and adoptive families for so many children.
Description: Virginia Family Network is a statewide grassroots movement of families committed to providing opportunities that support, educate, and empower other families with children and youth with mental health needs towards balance and improved family functioning. Similarly, Youth MOVE Virginia (Motivating Others through Voices of Experience) is a statewide grassroots movement to provide youth an HOW CAN WE SUPPORT YOU? Resources:• Helpline – 1-888-486-8264 - Toll free warmline for a...
Description: This Formed Families Resource Directory provides information about programs and services to support Northern Virginia families formed by adoption, foster care and kinship care who are raising children and youth with disabilities & other special needs. This directory is provided as a free service to individuals and other organizations and agencies. It covers the areas of Alexandria, Arlington County, Fairfax County, Loudoun County, and Prince William County. Some entries are listed under...
Description: Virginia Family Special Education Connection provides a one-stop-shop for parents, families and caregivers of children with special needs to: Access local school system contacts and disability services in your community Explore an abundance of resources, including assistive technology and behavioral supports to help your child succeed. Learn about and plan your child's educational program Understand your legal rights and responsibilities POWER (Parent Organizer with Educational Resources)...
Description: All children have a right to a free public education, regardless of their actual or perceived immigration or citizenship status or that of their parents. Education leaders, teachers, students, and families, have asked questions about guidance that was released by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that limits immigration enforcement actions from occurring at schools and other “sensitive locations.” This Department of Homeland Security guidance is at:...
Description: Launched in February 2003, Ready is a National public service campaign designed to educate and empower the American people to prepare for, respond to and mitigate emergencies, including natural and man-made disasters. The goal of the campaign is to promote preparedness through public involvement. Ready asks individuals to do four key things: (1) stay informed about the different types of emergencies that could occur and their appropriate responses (2) make a family emergency plan and (3) build...
Description:  10 Ways the Autism Response Team Can Help When You Don’t Know Where to Start: The Autism Response Team (ART) is specially trained to connect people with autism, their families and caregivers to information, tools, and resources.   Learn the Signs: Are you concerned your child has a developmental delay? Trust your instincts and contact ART to learn how to connect with your local Early Intervention resources.  Early intervention services can make extraordinary differences in...
Description: Children’s Challenging Behaviors is a six-hour workshop for parents of children and youth with mental health needs. In this workshop, a trained and experienced parent provides information to help parents understand typical behaviors versus challenging behaviors that require intervention. Parents learn when and how to seek help, develop parenting strategies, learn the ins and outs of special education and other educational supports, and discover community resources available to families and...
Description: We are celebrating over 30 years of non-profit services, advocacy and support to families and professionals involved with autism. We are the local affiliate of the national Autism Society of America that was founded in 1965. We provide 5 core services to maintain and increase the quality of life for everyone: Information and Referral – Contact us by email or phone for local resources and general information about autism and the services and programs we provide. Support – We are...
Description: This website is the Virginia Subdivision of The Division for Early Childhood (DEC) which exists to promote policies and advance evidence-based practices that support families and enhance the optimal development of young children (0-8) who have or are at risk for developmental delays and disabilities. DEC is an international membership organization for those who work with or on behalf of young children (0-8) with disabilities and other special needs and their families.
Description: Guardian ad litem (GAL) literally means “guardian for the suit.” A guardian ad litem in Virginia is an attorney appointed by a judge to assist the court in determining the circumstances of a matter before the court. It is the fundamental responsibility of the guardian ad litem to provide independent recommendations to the court about the client’s best interests, which can be different from advocating for what the client wants, and to bring balance to the decision-making...
Description: Project LIFE (Living Independently, Focusing on Empowerment) helps youth in Virginia succeed when they age out of foster care. We do that by helping youth directly and by supporting the professionals who work with them. Our services help youth in foster care avoid homelessness, helplessness and hopelessness. Instead, they have the knowledge and support they need to get jobs, continue school, live decently and give back to their communities. While youth are in foster care, decisions are often...
Description: Virginia's Medicaid Managed Care program is here to help you choose the best health plans and providers for you and your family. Contact our Managed Care HelpLine.  We can help! Toll-free number: 1-800-643-2273TTY: 1-800-817-6608Hours of operation: Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. We can speak with you in other languages.
Description: This includes: LONG-TERM CARE RESOURCES & GUIDEBOOKS LTC DIVISION MEDICAID FACT SHEETS AND RELATED DOCUMENTS PHONE NUMBERS FOR MEDICAID RECIPIENTS: PURPOSE OF THE DIVISION OF LONG-TERM CARE ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE OF THE DIVISION OF LONG TERM CARE AGING AND MEDICAL SERVICES DISABILITY AND SUPPORT SERVICES (at DBHDS for program operational management) DATA AND QUALITY MANAGEMENT REVIEW WAIVER OPERATIONS & CONTRACTS REGULATORY FUNCTIONS & RESPONSIBILITIES LTC RESPONSIBILITY TO ENSURE...
Description: CASA is the Court Appointed Special Advocate Program. CASA is a child advocacy organization that seeks to provide trained volunteers to speak for abused and neglected children who are the subjects of juvenile court proceedings. CASA volunteers advocate for safe, permanent homes for children. CASA began in 1977 in Seattle, Washington by Judge David Soukup who saw the need for more information on cases involving children in his court. The social services and legal systems were overburdened and...
Description: This includes: About Services for Older Youth & Independent Living Overview Eligibility, Services, Guidance & Procedures Educational Opportunities Community College Tuition Grant Education and Training Vouchers (ETV) Great Expectations Video Modules- Module 1: What is a Transition Plan and why should I do one? Module 2: Who is involved in Transition Planning? Module 3: How do I develop a Transition Plan? Module 4: What do I need to know to effectively plan for myself? Module 5: What...
Description: The Department of Juvenile Justice operates and is responsible for the vast majority of local Court Service Units (often known as juvenile probation offices) across the Commonwealth, as well as the two state-operated Juvenile Correctional Centers, Beaumont and Bon Air. On any given day, the Department has somewhere between 4,500 and 5,000 youth under some kind of supervision, with more than 90 percent of those youth being supervised in their communities through diversion, probation or parole....
Description: There is a juvenile and domestic relations district court in each Virginia city and county. In Virginia, a juvenile is any person under 18 years of age. The juvenile and domestic relations district court hears all matters involving juveniles such as criminal or traffic matters. Juvenile delinquency cases are cases involving a minor under the age of 18 who has been accused of committing an offense that would be considered criminal if committed by an adult. Other juvenile offenses may be referred...
Description: VaLegalAid.org is a Virginia Partnership for Equal Justice Website Project. It is an ambitious attempt by Virginia legal aid offices and their partners to provide complete, accurate, up-to-date information on poverty law issues in an interactive and easily accessible format. The intent is to allow access to this information by legal aid attorneys, probono attorneys, clients, advocates and providers of services to legal aid's traditional client base. Pro Bono Net Pro Bono Net is a unique...
Description: The power to Elevate Virginia is rooted in the Commonwealth’s people and its businesses.  Whether it is the businesses that already call Virginia home or new companies considering a new location, the strength of the workforce is their primary concern.  Virginia’s future economic strength and global competitiveness depend on the readiness of a highly skilled and well-trained workforce to fill the increasingly complex jobs that mark the 21st century economy. Virginia’s...
Description: This is an alphabetical listed of Virginia School Divisions which includes contact information for the division and its staff.
Description: The mission of Virginia's public education system is to educate students in the fundamental knowledge and academic subjects that they need to become capable, responsible, and self-reliant citizens. Therefore, the mission of the Virginia Board of Education and the superintendent of public instruction, in cooperation with local school boards, is to increase student learning and academic achievement.
Description: The Local School Divisions Foster Care Liaisons is a listing of the contact information (email address and phone numbers) for school divisions in Virginia. The Virgina Educational Stability Liaisons is a listing of the contact information (email address and phone numbers) for the Liaisons from the Department of Social Services.
Description: Magellan of Virginia was selected by the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services (DMAS) to serve as the Behavioral Health Services Administrator (BHSA). Magellan administers behavioral health services for members enrolled in Virginia’s Medicaid and FAMIS programs. This site is for members receiving behavioral health services in Virginia, their families and friends, and providers. Mission:Magellan of Virginia ensures quality behavioral health services are delivered to...
Description: The Children's Services Act (CSA) is now the name for a law enacted in 1993 that establishes a single state pool of funds to purchase services for at- risk youth and their families. The state funds, combined with local community funds, are managed by local interagency teams who plan and oversee services to youth. The mission of the CSA is to create a collaborative system of services and funding that is child-centered, family-focused and community-based when addressing the strengths and needs of...
Description: Explore our Web site to learn how we are living our mission to promote and provide equal access to communication and learning for students who are blind, visually impaired, deaf, hard of hearing, or deaf-blind. The DCMP is an idea that works thanks to funding by the U.S. Department of Education and administration by the National Association of the Deaf. Services The DCMP provides services designed to support and improve the academic achievement of students who are blind, visually impaired, deaf,...
Description: The National Rehabilitation Information Center (NARIC) is the library of the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR). We collect, catalog, and disseminate the articles, reports, curricula, guides, and other publications and products of the research projects funded by NIDILRR. NIDILRR funds more than 250 projects each year that conduct research on a wide range of issues including technology, health and function, independent living, and capacity...
Description: The Invisible Disabilities® Association is about believing. We believe you! The frequently invisible nature of illness and pain may lead to disbelief about that illness or pain by those surrounding the person who lives daily with invisible disabilities. This disbelief can lead to misunderstandings, rejection by friends, family and heath care providers. It may also lead to accusations of laziness or faking an illness. We are passionate about providing awareness that invisible illness,...
Description: The mission of AAHD is to advance health promotion and wellness initiatives for children and adults with disabilities. AAHD works to reduce health disparities between people with disabilities and the general population, and supports full community inclusion and accessibility. AAHD accomplishes its mission through advocacy, education, public awareness, and research efforts at the federal, state, and community levels. What is AAHD? The American Association on Health and Disability (AAHD) is a...
Description: The Military Outreach program through the Parent Educational Advocacy Training Center (PEATC) was created to provide awareness and assistance to military families, and professionals that support them, in Virginia through various outreach activities; networking - attending meetings that support military families, exhibiting and presenting workshops –as well as interacting and assisting parents and professionals. The Military Outreach Initiative continues to demonstrate its mission –...
Description: This is the Virginia subdvision of the Council for Exceptional Children.  Information on this site includes VA CEC conference information, videos, upcoming events, and the VA CEC journal. Our Mission: The Virginia Federation of the Council for Exceptional Children (VA CEC) has been active since 1958.  We have continued in CEC's mission of excellence by adding local resources for teachers, administrators, parents and other special education professionals.  Resources...
Description: The DaSy Center is a national technical assistance center funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). DaSy works with states to support IDEA early intervention and early childhood special education state programs in the development or enhancement of coordinated early childhood longitudinal data systems. DaSy provides technical assistance (TA) and resources to state agencies to assist with the development or enhancement of data systems for Part C early...
Description: The National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) conducts academic research to inform policy supporting high-quality, early education for all young children. Such education promotes the physical, cognitive and social development needed for children to succeed in school and later life. NIEER provides independent, research-based analysis and technical assistance to policymakers, journalists, researchers, and educators. NIEER publishes the "State of Preschool Yearbooks."
Description: The mission of the Center on the Developing Child is to drive science-based innovation that achieves breakthrough outcomes for children facing adversity.You can find useful scientifically based resources and videos on this site.  This center, based at Harvard, believes advances in science provide a powerful source of new ideas focused on the early years of life. Founded in 2006, the Center catalyzes local, national, and international innovation in policy and practice focused on...
Description: We believe that individuals who are deaf-blind are valued members of society and are entitled to the same opportunities and choices as other members of their community. NFADB is the largest national nonprofit organization serving the deaf-blind community. What We Do Train and support families as they advocate for the needs of their child and family. Connect families to other families with similar interests and needs. Collaborate with other organizations to make sure...
Description: As a national technical assistance center funded by the federal Department of Education, NCDB works to improve the quality of life for children who are deaf-blind and their families by: Creating visibility and direction for identified priorities through a range of practices, activities, supports and partnerships. Identifying and encouraging new innovations in local, state, and national practice and policy. Promoting opportunity for reflection, debate, and constructive dialogue around ideas and...
Description: Giving people who are deaf-blind the tools to live, work and thrive in the communities of their choice.
Description: Virginia Preschool Initiative Plus (VPI+) allows the Commonwealth to serve over 13,000 at-risk four-year-olds in new or improved high quality classrooms over four years through the US Department of Education Preschool Development Grant.. The new project is an extension of the existing Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI), a state-funded program that currently supports quality preschool programs for approximately 18,000 at-risk four-year-olds in the state. The mission of VPI+ is to tranform its...
Description: The Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities works with schools, businesses, and communities to achieve success through inclusion. Chapters in Lynchburg, the Peninsula, Richmond, and Tidewater The Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities’ “Building Inclusive Schools” Email Update provides curriculum ideas, sample activities, funding sources, and articles to educators each month during the school year.  In addition, VCIC has compiled resources by topic for use by schools:...
Description: To develop and influence disability employment-related policies and practices, ODEP sponsors the following five policy and technical assistance resources: Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion Job Accommodation Network LEAD Center National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth Partnership on Employment and Accessible Technology
Description: All students in tested grade levels and courses are expected to participate in Virginia’s assessment program, unless specifically exempted by state or federal law or by Board of Education regulations. Virginia’s assessment system includes students with disabilities and limited English proficient (LEP) students. Students with disabilities and LEP students may take Standards of Learning tests with or without accommodations or they may be assessed through alternate or alternative...