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Roger N. Meyer "...of a different mind "
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Wrap Around Case Management Services for

Young and Mature Disabled Adults

 

 

     Young adults undergoing transition from K-12 to the post high school experience are often not prepared to immediately assume responsibilities of independent adulthood.  Because their care givers have concentrated so much on their surviving "just one system," both the young adult and his/her care givers are often ill-prepared for life beyond that one system.  When parents and other care givers have spoken for or acted on behalf of a young adult, they may be ill-prepared to hand case management responsibilities over to the young adult.  Everyone is buffaloed by the contradictory eligibility and entrance requirements for many adult services.

 

     Like it or not, parents and young adults alike should be mindful of the fact that children outlive their parents by as much as thirty-five years.  Preparing a young or mature disabled adult child for their years without parents is a wrenching but necessary fact of life.  Preparing parents for their own lives as elderly parents of disabled adult children is an equally challenging task.

 

     In addition to training care givers to develop new case management skills, I also work to help the young adult or mature but dependent adult develop resources within the community to become their own self-advocates and case managers.  This service involves a combination of direct agency advocacy, parent and young/mature adult consultation, and simultaneous coordination of effort in many agencies and system.

 

     I do not use a cookie-cutter approach when engaged in this work.  Each family's circumstances are unique, so case management challenges and mutually agreed upon solutions are equally unique.  In specialty areas beyond my scope of practice, I frequently consult with trusted attorneys, special needs trust experts, social workers, clinical counseling and medical specialty professionals for their perspective.

 

     I have presented numerous workshops on self-advocacy and becoming one's own case manager.  For some of my published work, viewers may wish to read my chapter on "Be Your Own Case Manager" in Ask and Tell - Self-Advocacy and Disclosure for People on the Autism Spectrum (Stephen Shore, ed., 2004).  I  have also contributed a short chapter on "How We Think" describing the challenges of a recently diagnosed AS adult working with my employment research project co-principals in Voices from the Spectrum: Parents, Grandparents, Siblings, Friends, Helpers and People with Autism Tell Their Stories (Ariel and Naseef, eds. 2005).

 

 

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