RESOURCES


Dreams for Kids DC works with many amazing organizations as partners to help create our life-changing adaptive clinics. Below are a few of our partners that you and your family can use as resources. Please make sure to come to our first ever Dream & Do Resource Fair (click here) on May 12th to learn more from some of these organizations!

The Autism Source Resource Database, created in 2004, is the most comprehensive database of its kind. The Autism Society strives to offer only credible and reliable resources to their constituents, therefore they have employed their nationwide network of affiliates and collaborated with other autism organizations and professionals throughout the U.S. It is because of these collaborative relationships that the Autism Source™Resource Database continues to grow and is kept current with comprehensive resource listings. Learn more by clicking here.
Autism Speaks is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the lifespan, for the needs of individuals with autism and their families through advocacy and support; increasing understanding and acceptance of people with autism spectrum disorder; and advancing research into causes and better interventions for autism spectrum disorder and related conditions. Autism Speaks enhances lives today and is accelerating a spectrum of solutions for tomorrow. Learn more by clicking here.
The Arc of Virginia promotes and protects the human rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and actively supports their full inclusion and participation in the community throughout their lifetimes. The ARC of Virginia promotes self-advocacy, which equips people with I/DD from across the state with the tools and resources to advocate for themselves. They work to ensure that self-advocates have a seat at every table where I/DD policy is discussed and that they have the support needed for meaningful participation. They meet with legislators and policymakers to explain what is needed to achieve the A Life Like Yours vision, such as: ending the Medicaid Waiver waitlist, which has surpassed 10,000 individuals; improving services offered in the Waiver program; ensuring institutions are closed and community integrated housing and employment is available to all Virginians with I/DD, and expanding access to early intervention services and quality education for youth with I/DD. The Arc of Virginia is a state chapter of The Arc of the United States and is comprised of 24 local chapters from across the Commonwealth. Joining a local chapter gives you automatic membership to The Arc of Virginia and The Arc of the United States.
Learn more by clicking here.
For more than 100 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters has operated under the belief that inherent in every child is the ability to succeed and thrive in life. As the nation’s largest donor and volunteer supported mentoring network, Big Brothers Big Sisters makes meaningful, monitored matches between adult volunteers (“Bigs”) and children (“Littles”), ages 6 through 18, in communities across the country. They develop positive relationships that have a direct and lasting effect on the lives of young people. Their unique brand of one-to-one mentoring, in which a child facing adversity is carefully matched with a caring adult mentor in a relationship supported by professional Big Brothers Big Sisters staff members, changes lives for the better forever.
Learn more by clicking here.
Center for Parent Information & Resources: CPIR is a central “hub” of information and products created for the network of Parent Centers serving families of children with disabilities. All the materials found on the CPIR Hub have been created and archived for Parent Centers around the country to help them provide support and services to the families they serve. There are nearly 100 Parent Training and Information Centers (PTI’s) and Community Parent Resource Centers (CPRC’s) in the US and Territories, and CPIR provides easy and convenient access to all of them in one place. These centers work with families of infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities, birth to 26, help parents participate in their children’s education and development, and partner with professionals and policy makers to improve outcomes for all children with disabilities. Click here for more information.
unnamed-copySeptember of 2015, The Children’s Guild Public Charter School will open its doors in Washington, DC with the goal of recruiting 450 scholars. Our school values the unique talents of your child. We offer a personalized learning environment. The Children’s Guild’s philosophy of TranZed develops caring, committed and contributing young people for a cause bigger than themselves. The culture of our school is reinforced throughout our school goals, curriculum, environment and systems. At the heart is our student centered approach to teaching and learning where our principles are guided by the way we Think, Act, Care and Reflect.
DC Partners in Transition is a resource designed for young adults with disabilities in the DC area to help them answer questions about their future and begin planning for it. They provide local resources as well as success stories of young adults in similar positions. Their helpful resources span a number of topics including Education, Employment, Health, Legal and Advocacy, Transportation, Recreation, Social Development, Independent Living, Government, and Technology.
Please click here for more information.
Edge Ed is an SAT preparation course for students with diverse learning needs, designed for students with attention, processing, or anxiety issues. EDGE Ed is NOW offering a summer camp that dives into various interests – including media production, photography, and more! For more information, please click here.
Jewish Social Service Agency: Specialized Employment Program: Nationally, those with a disability face an unemployment rate of 70%. JSSA’s Specialized Employment team has been highly successful in helping individuals with disabilities defy the odds and gain competitive employment. JSSA also works with local organizations to provide competitive, high quality employment services. This past year, JSSA’s team of vocational counselors and coaches served and supported hundreds of clients through a variety of services and programs ideal for those whose goal is meaningful community-based competitive employment. These services and programs included career assessment, job training and job development, job coaching and retention, and socialization/social support. JSSA’s staff of experienced vocational evaluators, employment specialists proficient in Spanish and ASL, job coaches, and job developers offer interview and resume guidance, job development and job coaching, often making the difference between a life time of relying on others and one of self-sustainability. Their job placement services are offered at no cost.
For more information, please click here.
KEEN Greater DC is a nonprofit volunteer-led organization that provides one-to-one recreational opportunities for children and young adults with developmental and physical disabilities at no cost to their families and caregivers. KEEN’s mission is to foster the self-esteem, confidence, skills and talents of its athletes through non-competitive activities, allowing young people facing even the most significant challenges to meet their individual goals.

Visit KEEN’s website here.

Madison Fields is a fully functional farm that offers an inclusive environment where adults and children -with special needs, or not – can play, learn and work together. Located in Dickerson, MD, Madison Fields features a state-of-the-art riding stable, bank barn, corn crib, chicken coop, tenant housing, a guest house, a historic farmhouse, and two fully-enclosed out buildings. Their goal is to build a thriving agricultural community that embraces diversity, acceptance, and inclusion. Learn more by clicking here.

The Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council (Council) is an independent, self-governing organization dedicated to advancing the inclusion of Marylanders with developmental disabilities in all facets of community life. The Council is 100% federally funded. Council members are appointed by the governor and are similar to a board of directors in that they establish the priorities of the Council and help guide the Council’s work. Council members include people with developmental disabilities, family members, local and non-profit organizations, state agency representatives, and representatives of Disability Rights Maryland and the Maryland Center on Developmental Disabilities. The majority of Council members are people with developmental disabilities and family members. The Council is in a unique position to bring together people with diverse perspectives, experiences and knowledge in meaningful partnerships. This work is led and supported by a staff of five. Council meetings are open to the public. Learn more by clicking here.
The Metro Washington Association of Blind Athletes (MWABA) is a 501(c)(3) organization of blind athletes and their sighted peers who believe that recreational and competitive sports opportunities should be open to everyone, regardless of their ability to see. We hold programs for blind and visually impaired youth and adults from Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia to discover new sports or practice familiar ones in an open and welcoming environment. Our mission also includes teaching blind athletes the physical techniques and body movements that they may not have had a chance to learn through physical education classes. We also share the best way to teach athletic and kinesthetic skills to the blind and visually impaired population with educators in our area. MWABA events are all about trying new things, meeting new friends, staying or becoming fit, and having fun! We support one another in achieving a fit and active lifestyle. Learn more about Linden by clicking here.
The National Consortium for Physical Education for Individuals with Disabilities (NCPEID)’s mission is to promote research, professional preparation, service delivery, and advocacy of Physical Education for individuals with disabilities. Membership is open to all persons who are or have been involved in professional preparation, demonstration, or research activity related to physical education and recreation for individuals with disabilities. University faculty in adapted physical education as well as public school and residential facility personnel are encouraged to become members.

Visit the NCPEID Web site here.

peatc2014_logo_final-1The Parent Educational Advocacy Training Center (PEATC) builds positive futures for Virginia’s children by working collaboratively with families, schools and communities in order to improve opportunities for excellence in education and success in school and community life. Our special focus is children with disabilities.

We do this by providing:

  • Services and support for families and professionals;
  • Easy-to-understand, research-based information and training; and
  • Opportunities for strategic partnerships and advocacy for systemic improvement.
The Special Olympics mission was founded in 1968 and is now the world’s largest sports organization for people with intellectual disabilities. Special Olympics’ ultimate goal is to help persons with intellectual disabilities participate as productive and respected members of society at large, by offering them a fair opportunity to develop and demonstrate their skills and talents through sports training and competition, and increasing the public’s awareness of their capabilities and needs. Special Olympics provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. They also provide health screenings as well as host fundraising events. Special Olympics offers 30+ Olympic-style individual and team sports that provide meaningful training and competition opportunities for persons with intellectual disabilities. They have events and competitions happening in places all around the world, but the headquarters are located locally in Washington D.C. Learn more by clicking here.
Sunflower Bakery prepares young adults with learning differences through professional on-the-job training for employment in pastry, baking and related food industries. Sunflower Bakery is an inclusive workforce-training organization guided by Jewish values and engaged in community building. Learn more by clicking here.
That’s A Wrap Deli is a venture established by Community Support Services, Inc. (CSS), a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization providing a wide range of services benefiting people with disabilities. A long standing goal of the organization has been to establish a community business of interest to people directly supported by CSS as well as to the general public. That’s a Wrap is a dynamic project that combines healthy food products people want with inclusive employment opportunities for people with disabilities. That’s a Wrap offers healthy food for sale including wraps, salads, soups, casseroles, fruits and healthy snacks and drinks. The deli will primarily sell ready made packaged foods for carry out business.
Please click here for more information.
TOPSoccer is a national program offered by United States Youth Soccer Association (USYSA) for players with special needs.

TOPSoccer Buddies are invaluable volunteers who assist the trainer and participate directly with individual players or within a team with several players to enable participation in soccer activities. The Buddies are not players and do not score goals, they help the TOPSoccer player succeed and keep them as safe as possible. Buddies can be a same-aged peer, a teenager or an adult. They can be a soccer player, someone who works with special needs children or someone who has no soccer experience, but a strong desire to enable children to have fun. Please click here for more information.

VirginiaNavigator – Disability and Employment: Information and Resources: VirginiaNavigator is a 501(c)(3) non-profit with the mission of providing helpful, free resource information associated with aging, disabilities, post-military life, and overall well-being. VirginiaNavigator offers a comprehensive list of resources available in the state of Virginia for individuals with disabilities. In addition, they offer the website disAbility Navigator, which provides a search engine for individuals with disabilities to navigate through local services, helpful tips, and answers to a variety of questions.
Please click here for more information.
Advocates for Justice and Education seeks to empower families, youth, and the community to be effective advocates to ensure that children and youth, particularly those who have special needs, receive access to appropriate education and health services. Their values include:

  • Accountability: We promote school and agency accountability to ensure that all children, youth, and families receive proper services and supports.
  • Accessibility: We ensure accessibility to all families and the community at large.
  • Commitment to Children and Families: We are committed to the success of all children, youth, and families.

Learn more by clicking here.

Athletes For Hope is a non-profit organization founded in 2007 by Andre Agassi, Muhammad Ali, Lance Armstrong, Warrick Dunn, Jeff Gordon, Mia Hamm, Tony Hawk, Andrea Jaeger, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Mario Lemieux,Alonzo Mourning, and Cal Ripken, Jr. As athletes who share a deep commitment to giving back, their founders joined forces to create an organization that brings athletes together, to educate, inspire, and empower them to channel their energy for a common goal: to make a difference in the world through sports philanthropy. Athletes for Hope has grown from its original founders to over 4,000 athletes across many sports leagues, including the NBA, NFL, NHL, MLB, and the Olympic movement. These athletes take part in their Causeway program which provides education workshops and one-on-one guidance for each athlete through their personal philanthropic journey.
Learn more by clicking here.
The Arc Montgomery County identifies, creates and sustains inclusive communities that embrace and engage individuals and families affected by intellectual and developmental disabilities. For almost 60 years, The Arc Montgomery County has supported children, youth, adults, seniors and families affected by disabilities like autism and down syndrome by providing child care, work skills training, employment, community living services, resources, respite care and advocacy. The Arc Montgomery County directly supports over 500 children, youth, adults, seniors, and families each day and more than 4,000 individuals annually with comprehensive services.
Learn more by clicking here.
Cameron’s Coffee & Chocolates is the first business enterprise of the non-profit foundation, Every1 Can Work, and opened in October 2013. Guilt-free chocolate was once just a dream for lovers of sweetness everywhere, but with Cameron’s Chocolates it is here! Their remarkable chocolates are made with love and devotion by a wonderful group of young adults and volunteers. These young adults have been dealt some wild cards, which add challenges to their daily lives, but they all share a love of life and an appreciation of what it means to have meaningful employment at Cameron’s Chocolates.
Learn more by clicking here.
Georgetown Prep is proud to participate in Challenger Baseball. Challenger Baseball gives boys and girls with physical and mental challenges the chance to play baseball along with the millions of other kids who participate in the game worldwide. In Challenger Baseball, everybody bats, everybody scores, and everybody wins! Learn more by clicking here.
Since 1900 Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind (CLB) has been dedicated to helping the blind or visually impaired population of the greater Washington region overcome the challenges of vision loss. Our work enables people of all ages who are blind or visually impaired to remain independent, active, and productive in our society. CLB’s Vision is to provide independence. CLB provides the right variety of life style changing services to enable each and every blind or visually impaired person in the region to achieve their highest level of economic independence and quality of life. Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind’s programs and services include training and consultation in assistive technology, employment marketing skills training, career placement services, comprehensive low vision care, and a wide range of counseling and rehabilitation services. CLB offers transition planning for teens in high school. During the academic year teens participate in a series of monthly workshops, where they focus on career and secondary education exploration . In the summer, teens have the option of participating in a three week intensive residential program on the campus of Catholic University, which includes a paid internship. CLB hosts a variety of family events throughout the year, as well as a week long summer youth camp for 6 to 12 year olds who are blind or visually impaired. Click here for more information.
Quality Trust for Individuals with Disabilities is an independent, non-profit advocacy organization focused on improving the lives of children and adults with disabilities and their families in the District of Columbia and beyond. They work with individuals and family members to solve problems, identify opportunities for learning and contribution and find creative ways to minimize “differences” and make the most of each person’s abilities. Quality Trust recognizes that families need support, resources, encouragement, and tools to make the best decisions for their loved ones with disabilities. Quality Trust provides assistance through their three core programs of individual and family advocacy, legal education and advocacy, and monitoring.
Please click here for more information.
The Department on Disability Services (DDS) provides the residents of the District of Columbia with information, oversight and coordination of services for people with disabilities and those who support them, such as service providers and employers. DDS supports the District’s Disability Determination Division where Social Security Disability Insurance claims determinations are processed. Two Administrations oversee and coordinate services for residents with disabilities through a network of private and non-profit providers. These are the Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) and Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA). The DDA ensures that residents with intellectual disabilities receive the services and supports they need to lead self-determined and valued lives in the community. DDA delivers outreach and service coordination services, development and management of a provider network delivering community residential, day, vocational, employment and individual and family support services, and operation of a comprehensive quality management program. The RSA focuses on employment, ensuring that persons with disabilities achieve a greater quality of life by obtaining and sustaining employment, economic self-sufficiency and independence. RSA achieves this through employment marketing and placement services, vocational rehabilitation, inclusive business enterprises and support of the DC Center for Independent Living.
Click here for more information.
The Edlavitch DCJCC is the Jewish community’s address in our Nation’s Capital, providing uniquely urban educational, social, cultural and fitness programs to the DC community inside and outside the beltway. Open to all, with the mission of building and preserving Jewish identity, EDCJCC promotes community values through a number of programs and services including the following; world-class theater performances and post-show discussions, film and music festivals and year-round arts programming, community service volunteer opportunities that make a difference, art exhibits and discussions with the artists, a state-of-the-art sport and fitness center including leagues, Jewish education classes, workshops and retreats, programs for interfaith couples and families, LGBT programs and events, young professionals outreach and engagement, a Reggio Emilia-inspired full-day preschool, parents/caregivers and their Infants and Toddlers Classes, after-school enrichment for grades K-6, summer day camps for children of all ages, and special programs for older adults.
Click here for more information.
logo-lpf-colorThe purpose of Leveling the Playing Field (LTPF) is to give underprivileged children the opportunity to enjoy the pleasure of athletic involvement. LTPF collects donations of sports equipment from various collegiate athletic departments, county recreationdepartments, families and individual donors from across the nation. Studies show that students who participate in interscholastic athletics have higher grade point averages, attendancerates, standardized test scores, educational aspirations, health habits and feelings of connection and belonging. LTPF recognizes that giving children the prospect of athletics can change their lives!
Ignite Adaptive Sports’ mission is to provide integrated recreational opportunities for people with disabilities that will foster independence through the acquisition of lifetime skills. Ignite is a member organization of Disabled Sports USA, Professional Ski Instructors of America Rocky Mountain Division (PSIA-RM) and the American Association of Snowboard Instructors (AASI-RM).

Visit Ignite Adaptive Sports’ website here.

unnamedKids in Action is an adaptive sports and social activities program for children and young adults with disabilities and their sisters and brothers. All kids should have the chance to play sports and be a part of activities with others their own age. We adapt our sports, social, and health-based activities and focus on each child’s goals and strengths.
In their first year, Linden Resources employed 26 individuals with disabilities. Since that time, Linden Resources has grown to employ, provide job placement and other innovative services and programs to serve each year nearly 450 individuals with barriers to being employed. Linden Resources is accredited by The Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF International) at the highest level of a three year term, is an approved Ability One vendor and is a licensed provider of services through the Virginia Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services, DC Rehabilitation Services Administration, and Maryland Division of Rehabilitation Services.  We partner with Northern Virginia Community Service Boards, the Virginia Department of Health and Human Services, other non-profit organizations and agencies to achieve our mission and advance our strategic goals to expand employment opportunities for people with disabilities. Learn more about Linden by clicking here.
On the Edge wants to bring children and others together who would not typically be involved in water sports and activities. We believe everyone should have the opportunity to experience something different and challenging, something that they could take on, and have fun with at the same time.

Our philosophy is to have children/adults in a safe and successful environment and appreciate the company of other people who are eager for a challenge both mentally and physically.

We want everyone to feel like they belong to positive, supportive and creative environment where they can have fun, learn and be On the Edge.
Visit KEEN’s website here.

unnamedOne Way or Another seeks to improve quality of life by providing opportunities, access, equipment, and training to people with disabilities. This non-profit organization was formed in the spirit of remembrance for Sienna Caselle who took her life at the age of 16. Sienna had a passion for helping others. She was able to see past a persons disability, focusing on their ability. She loved to share snow and water sports with people who would not otherwise be able to participate in these activities. Programs include summer waterskiing, wakeboarding and wake surfing for people with disabilities and their families. Using specialized adaptive equipment and techniques, we are able to offer several levels of participation and independence. Family inclusion is important. We also have been working to cultivate a training program for volunteers to assist in the development of other programs throughout our region. Along with the summer program, we contribute to the winter sports programs throughout the area by providing scholarships to individuals for the purpose of attending snow skiing and snowboarding lessons and clinics. In addition, we would also like to help these organizations by assisting in the acquisition of specialized ski and snowboard equipment.
The Parents’ Place of Maryland (PPM) began in 1990 as a grass-roots effort of families, professionals and community leaders determined to provide resources, support, and information for parents of children with disabilities and special health care needs. Their philosophy of “families helping families” reflects their commitment to support families from diverse cultures. Today, the Parents’ Place serves as Maryland’s Parent Training and Information Center and Family-to-Family Health Information Center where they support thousands of Maryland families each year through their programs and services. They believe that experienced parents are a key source of knowledge and support to help other parents become effective voices for their own children. The Parents’ Place is staffed mostly by parents who have faced the same challenges themselves. Their mission is to empower families as advocates and partners in improving education and health outcomes for their children with disabilities and special health care needs. For more information, please click here.
ServiceSource is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission to facilitate services and partnerships to support people with disabilities, their families, their caregivers and community members in order to build more inclusive communities. ServiceSource is committed to delivering exceptional services to individuals with disabilities through innovative and valued employment, training, habilitation, housing and support services. In addition, they offer transition services, autism services,family support services, financial coaching, interpreting and deaf services, and more.
For more information, please click here.
The DC Special Education Co-Op fills a unique community need in DC by working with teachers, school leaders, and across charter schools to improve educational services for students with disabilities. Their vision is that all students with disabilities in the District of Columbia receive a rigorous, individualized, and inclusive education preparing them for post-graduation success. The Co-Op’s programs, initiatives, and partnerships help make this vision a reality. They provide on-site services including custom professional development, conducting functional behavior assessments and developing behavior intervention plans. They also provide consultation support to help charter schools design and implement compliant and high quality special education programs. The Co-Op is a great source for resources helpful to those in the field of special education. For more information, click here.
spirit-clubAt SPIRIT Club, we aim to strengthen people’s physical and emotional well-being by providing fun, high-quality fitness opportunities in social settings to people of all ages and abilities. Our certified instructors are trained to provide programs that are:

  • Social
  • Physical
  • Interactive
  • Respectful
  • Integrated
  • Involve Teamwork

The Taylor Listening Center is Baltimore’s premier audiology private practice. We are dedicated to providing the best care for all of our patients in a comfortable and family friendly environment.

At the Taylor Listening Center, we specialize in hearing testing, hearing aid fittings, hearing conservation, tinnitus management and providing complimentary on-site hearing screenings for local businesses. Learn more by clicking here.

Two Top Adaptive is a non-profit organization established to provide recreational activities and teach sports to mentally and physically challenged children and adults.

Visit Two Top Adaptive’s website here.

The Washington Wheelers Blind Hockey Club’s mission is to provide visually impaired people of all ages and abilities the opportunity to enjoy hockey. Whether you have never ice skated before or you are a blind Alex Ovechkin, they have ice time, equipment, coaching and teammates waiting for you. Their program is completely free, and they skate every Sunday morning at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Arlington, Virginia. They are a USA Hockey sanctioned, nationally recognized program. Please click here for more information.
WMATA is the DC Maryland and Virginia Metro Service. WMATA is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, gender, gender identity, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, physical or mental disability, or status as a protected veteran, or any other status protected by applicable federal law, except where a bona fide occupational qualification exists. Our hiring process is designed to be accessible and free from discrimination.Learn more by clicking here.