Intellectual / Developmental
Disabilities Services

About one in six children in the U.S. is living with a developmental disability. One in 68 has been identified on the autism spectrum. With the right set of supports, people with intellectual/developmental disabilities can live in, work in, contribute to and participate in the community. This happens over and over again – every time it does, society is the better for it. That’s what we do.

At SUS, we’re leading the way using Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) to help individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities manage their behavior and improve their communication skills.

Our services support each individual to:

Live and receive services in the community of their choice

Build and enjoy social connections through productive community participation

Deepen relationships with friends, family and others in their lives

Direct their own lives and experience life to its fullest potential

Elizabeth has lived at our Vernon residence for almost 20 years. All her neighbors know Elizabeth and everywhere she goes, there is a chorus of Hi Elizabeth! At home, it is the same. Returning each day from her day program, Elizabeth shouts out, Hi to each of her housemates and staff members. Elizabeth is eager to learn and practice her self-care skills but when she hears music, Elizabeth stops all activity to dance.

Intellectual / Developmental Disabilities Services

Residential

SUS supports individuals to live in the most integrated community setting possible. Each home offers support services that give people access to medical, nursing, psychological, nutritional, and employment services. For more details please contact Brenda Williams at bwilliams@sus.org or call 212 633-6900 ext. 1676.

Day Habilitation

Our Day Habilitation programs reduce the barriers to community inclusion by building each individual’s practical skills. These include communication and self-preservation, community awareness, independent living and pre-vocational skills by volunteering in the community. For more details please contact Jajaida Gonzalez at jgonzalez@sus.org or call 212 633-6900 ext. 2318

Community Habilitation

SUS’ Community Habilitation Program (Community Hab) helps individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities that live independently, or at home with family, to engage in their community. Community Hab Workers support individuals in strengthening their relationship building and social skills, and provide assistance with independent living activities such as cooking, community travel and household upkeep. Through this engagement, these individuals become more confident in making informed choices and developing adaptive skills. For more details please contact Brenda Williams at bwilliams@sus.org or call 212 633-6900 ext. 1676.

Medicaid Service Coordination

SUS provides Medicaid Service Coordination as a form of case management and advocacy. Our Medicaid Service Coordination is a portable service through which coordinators advocate on behalf of individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities, coordinate and monitor desired services for them in the community, assisting consumers in achieving their life goals. For more details please contact Brenda Williams at bwilliams@sus.org or call 212 633-6900 ext. 1676.

Employment

Job developers and job coaches assist individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities to prepare for, secure and be successful in their work/volunteer environments.
Supported Employment (SEMP) provides support to assist individuals to obtain and maintain paid competitive jobs in the community. For more details please contact Jajaida Gonzalez at jgonzalez@sus.org 212 633-6900 ext. 2318

Self-Direction

Self-direction empowers individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities and their family to determine the supports and services that best fit their needs with a great amount of flexibility. The funds used to pay for these services reflect a resource level determined by the individual’s assessed needs. People who self-direct will be assisted by a circle of support, a group of people who advocate the individual’s best interests and supports their success. The individual is at the center of the circle and members of the circle communicate on an ongoing basis to discover, discuss, and plan the best way to meet needs and fulfill personal goals. For more details please contact Johanna Cepin at jcepin@sus.org or call 212 633-6900 ext. 5397.

ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis)

SUS is using Applied Behavior Analysis to teach appropriate communication and social skills that decrease the frequency of challenging behaviors that limit opportunities to engage in community.
Individuals learn age appropriate life skills paired with social language to provide opportunities to interact in and outside of SUS. The application of the principles of this evidence-based practice has led to a decrease in psychotropic medication, a decrease in emergency room visits and hospitalizations and greater independence. For more details please contact Vivian Attanasio at vattanasio@sus.org or call 212 633-6900 ext. 1035.

Family Supports

For economically disadvantaged families who have children with intellectual / developmental disabilities, SUS provides funds to cover expenses such as technology, clothing and recreation – expenses not reimbursable through traditional insurance and Medicaid. For more details please contact Brenda Williams at bwilliams@sus.org or call 212 633-6900 ext. 1676.

Outside the Box

Olympics
For individuals residing with SUS and attending our day programs, group athletics and competition – medals and all – provide a terrific outlet. The SUS Olympics and Family Fun Day is held each year in the late spring.

Basketball League
In black and green uniforms, the SUS Warriors practice weekly and provide mean competition for other Day Hab teams in NYC. Highly competitive and high-energy games have made us six time champions with placement in the playoffs every season!

Best Buddies
Friends provide the support, encouragement and companionship that we all need. Many individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities experience feelings of isolation and disconnection and seek to develop friendships outside of their residences. To this end, SUS has partnered with Best Buddies New York, a volunteer effort that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships between people with intellectual/developmental disabilities and peers in the corporate and civic communities. Best Buddies speak at least weekly and meet monthly with the goal of establishing mutually enriching friendships.

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