Ben's High School Graduation
When my son Ben was born, I saw a world of possibilities and opportunities for him. But at 18 months old, he was diagnosed with Autism and my whole world view shifted. Each stage of his life saw it's own challenges. We celebrated every milestone, every achievement, culminating with his graduation from High School. As we celebrated this event, we watched as the services that had nurtured our son through the years evaporated overnight. While most graduates were headed off to college or work and moving towards an independent life, Ben was stuck in a limbo of sorts. He lived at home and was socially isolated. As we explored housing options, we found the existing models to be outdated and insufficient to meet his needs. Group homes offered a community environment but lacked any real sense of independence and supportive apartments provided independence without the community.
I asked myself- why shouldn't my child have both? Why should any family have to choose? Indie Living was born out of this concept. The concept behind Indie Living is simple. Create comfortable, affordable "smart" apartments and provide on-site opportunities for socialization, education and recreation for individuals with Autism and related disabilities.
Offering our tenants independence in a safe and supportive community environment,
while providing peace of mind to their families
The Community Room
A place to gather, relax,
play and socialize
A variety of features such as a pool table, video game systems, large screen tv, couches and coffee area. Educational and recreational programming will be held in the Community Room. The Community Room will be a safe place for our tenants to gather, socialize and relax.
Comfortable and Modern Apartments
Our multi-bedroom apartments will feature "smart" appliances, key-less entry and free Wi-Fi. Each apartment will be equipped with fire and smoke and carbon monoxide detectors as well as emergency response alarms. Tenants live independently in their own apartments. We will work with individuals and their families to utilize services through their OPWDD Self-Direction budget and their Circle of Support.
Support when you need it, where you need it
Our on-site Community Manger will organize events, encourage participation and provide linkage to outside services and supports. The Community Manager will also act as a liaison for families to be involved. In addition to the Community Manager, there will be a building manager on-site after hours in case of a crisis or emergency.
WE ARE EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE OUR PARTNERSHIP WITH GOOD COUSEL SERVICES, WHO IS ACTING AS OUR FISCAL SPONSOR. INDIE LIVING IS NOW A 501(C)3 CHARITY
We are seeking like-minded individuals to offer their input and expertise to put together the essentials needed for our endeavor. Community members, law professionals and those knowledgeable in the field of developmental disabilities are welcome. Please contact us if you would like to be a part of our board.
Currently, we are in need of donations to provide the seed money required to put our mission into action. This is an opportunity to be an integral part of something bigger than ourselves, for the greater good of our children.
Before we can rent a single apartment or provide a single service, people need to know who we are and how to find us. Please share this site with all of your contacts, especially those in media, marketing, public service and in the developmental disabilities community.
Mandy H. Breslow, LCSW, MS Ed.
Founder and Executive Director
I have over 20 years of experience in the fields of Social Work and Developmental Disabilities. Prior to starting Indie Living, I’ve worked with individuals and families ages 5 and up, helping navigate the mental health, special education and developmental disability systems. I specialize in helping children and adults with Autism and related disorders, learning disabilities and mental illness. In addition to working with these individuals, I have been a strong advocate for families and was an integral part of bringing new and innovative programs and events to my children’s school district. It’s my belief that everyone should have the opportunity to reach their own full potential in order for them to lead healthy, happy and productive lives.
As the parent of two sons on the Autism Spectrum, I am keenly aware of the challenges faced by the families of these children. My unique skill set of social work, education and parenting children with special needs provides me with a fresh perspective from my personal and professional experiences.
Indie Living is more than just a company. It’s a labor of love that aims to change the future for all of our children.