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It Starts with Families

We believe that families are an important asset in the equation of ensuring people with disabilities have the opportunity to live their best lives for their whole lives. And, we know when families have access to information and resources, they are more empowered to support and care for the family member with disabilities.

Did you know?

  • Approximately 119,000 or 65% of Ohioans with intellectual or developmental disabilities (I/DD) live with their families? And in most cases, the support provided does not end when the family member turns 18.
  • Over 58% of parents/caregivers spend more than 40 hours per week providing support to their loved one with I/DD beyond typical care.
  • 52% of families caring for children with disabilities experience difficulty paying medical bills.

Across agencies and across the lifespan

Extensive research on people with disabilities and their families recognizes that supports are most effective when provided to the family so they have the capacity and knowledge to provide assistance. Strategies to support the family unit must be a fundamental consideration across all agencies, at all levels of each agency, and in all aspects of planning.

As partner agencies and organizations that support people with disabilities, you play an important role in helping to build families’ confidence and encourage a vision for the possibilities and opportunities for the whole family. To do this, we must connect families to important information, research, and resources and support effective family engagement strategies.

It Starts with Families (PDF)