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Encouraging Heroes. You can be one too.

(Editor’s note: The good people at Easter Seals have sponsored a study of the needs adults with disabilities and their families have, and we’re spreading the word.)

As a parent you’ll do everything to ensure your child’s future will include the best education, employment opportunities and quality of life. But what happens if you’re one of the millions of adults living with a developmental disability in this country? Or the parent and caregiver to an adult with a disability? How is your life different? Are the basics covered?

After age 21, young adults with disabilities “age out” of the services and supports provided by law through the school system. Whatever help families living with disabilities may have received through childhood simply goes away. Families are met with heightened concerns about their loved ones’ immediate needs as an adult.

The Easter Seals Living with Disabilities Study, made possible by MassMutual Financial Group, provides insight into the lives of individuals with disabilities and the everyday challenges their families face. Some key findings from the study show that parents of adults with disabilities are very concerned about the following aspects of their adult child’s lives:

-Finances 74% of parents strongly or somewhat disagree their adult child with a disability is financially independent; while more than half (52%) of parents strongly or somewhat agree their adult children without disabilities are financially independent.

-Employment Only 11% of parents of adult children with disabilities report their child is employed full time (or 19% part time), while 48% of parents of adults without disabilities report the same (or 24% part time).

Easter Seals is using key findings from this study to help raise awareness of the life-long services families desperately need – including school to work transitions, employment support and financial planning. Learn more about the study by visiting a special webcast link below where actor Joe Mantegna of the hit TV series “Criminal Minds” tells his story about his own adult daughter who is living with autism.

Easter Seals Living With Disability Webcast

You may also be interested in MassMutual’s SpecialCareSM Program, which gives families with individuals with special needs access to information, specialists, and financial strategies that can help improve their quality of life. Together, we can work to bridge the gap for the many families living with developmental disabilities.

Earnest Parenting: help for parents who want to support Easter Seals.