Advocacy Alliance News

Advocacy Alliance News

Keep checking back for the latest updates on what The Becker Center’s Advocacy Alliance has been up to!
Contacts: Kerry Mahoney, Kathleen Amaral, Herb Cabral

Becker Center: What We’re Learning from Older Caregivers, Round 2

Nearly 70 families and agency staff attended the Older Caregiver Forum held at the DDS Southeast Regional Office. Caregivers expressed their concerns and worries for their loved ones’ futures.

Sibling Cathy Lacoste-Hamel urged parents to educate brothers and sisters on what is needed (such as working with Social Security).

PREVIOUSLY: Becker Center: What We’re Learning from Older Caregivers (October 31, 2018)

Many attendees expressed gratitude for good programs and services; however, issues with the ongoing workforce shortage crisis, the lack of available programs and services (including respite and transportation) caused great concern.

One parent remarked that she did not want to wait for the crisis to happen before she is able to receive help.

Our next forum, for the Western Region of Massachusetts, is scheduled at the Holyoke Public Library on May 1st. Register today.

Posted in , | Posted on April 10, 2019 | 1 Comment Continue reading

The Arc of Massachusetts Welcomes Kathleen Amaral, Advocacy Alliance Coordinator

The Becker Center for Advocacy at The Arc of Massachusetts is thrilled to welcome our new Advocacy Alliance Coordinator, Kathleen Amaral.

Kathleen resides in the South coast region of the state, with her family. Mom to Emma, Liam and Mae, her passion for advocacy and supporting families began when Liam, now 15, was born with a rare genetic diagnosis, Congenital Disorder of Glycosylation (CDG DDOST). Navigating his complex needs ignited her passion for assisting families who find themselves on a similar journey.

Kathleen has several years of professional experience in the area of family support, service navigation, and leadership development, as well as personal experience advocating for positive change on a local and state level, with a focus on disability related topics. She is overjoyed to begin this new journey as Advocacy Alliance Coordinator at The Arc of Massachusetts.

Check out Kathleen’s interview as part of our Supporting Families campaign below to get to know her better!

Posted in , | Posted on March 21, 2019 | 1 Comment Continue reading

Advocacy Alliance Leads Storytelling Workshop for LifeLinks Families

On February 12, Advocacy Alliance Coordinator Herb Cabral led a Storytelling Workshop at LifeLinks, Inc. Family members, advocates, and LifeLinks’ own Family Support Staff came together to help develop Storytelling and Advocacy Skills.

Herb and one of the family advocates led a discussion of how to develop your stories so that families were better able to understand the process of communicating your needs with legislators. They also stressed the importance of having your personal stories documented, so that it will be easier to continue advocacy efforts without starting from the ground up each time.

Another Storytelling Workshop at LifeLinks has been scheduled for April 23. For more information, contact Herb at

Posted in , , | Posted on February 12, 2019 | Leave a comment Continue reading

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