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May 11, 2024 | 9:15 AM

Transition Planning: Preparing for the future starts today

A free, in-person, half-day transition event to empower families of young adults with disabilities by providing knowledge and tools to navigate the transition to adulthood.
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Demystifying Transition Planning

Join us Saturday, May 11, 2024 for a free, in-person transition event to empower families, foster a sense of community, and provide the knowledge and tools needed to navigate the various transitions young adults with complex needs will encounter throughout their lives.

Designed for families and caregivers of young adults (14 – 23) and professionals, our interactive sessions will support dialogue and discussions in topics like:

  • Community-building
  • Self-care
  • Public Benefits
  • Housing
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9:15 am – 9:30 am: Coffee, Pastries, and Opening Remarks

9:30 am – 10:00 am: Community-Building and Supportive Self-Care

10:00 am – 11:15 am: Accessing Public Benefits

11:30 am – 12:30 pm: Accessing Affordable Housing

12:30 pm – 1:00 pm: Lunch and Discussion

Keynote speaker

Lydia Sheehey is the parent of two young adults with Autism and the founder of Simplify the Journey, an adult special needs consulting business. She educates families on how to maximize numerous financial benefits and how to access supports and services that focus on adult life including employment, housing, healthcare, community life, recreation, post-secondary education, financial planning, and more.


  • portrait photo of Ann Phelan

    Ann Phelan

    Manager of Resources and Engagement, Perkins Transition Center
  • Headshot of Alex Lavoie

    Alex LaVoie

    Director, Perkins Transition Center
  • Lydia Sheehey

    Parent, Advocate and Adult Special Needs Consultant
  • Doreen Cummings

    Director of Services, Mainstay Supportive Housing & Home Care

Session topics

9:15 am – 9:30 am

Coffee and welcome

Speaker: Alexandra LaVoie, Director, Perkins Transition Center

Join us for coffee and pastries, meet fellow attendees, and gear up for an engaging day ahead. Our Transition Center Director will kick things off and introduce the event.

9:30 am – 9:55 am

Building a community of support that leads to empowerment, and supporting self care.

Speaker: Ann Phelan

Parenting a child with complex needs comes with unique challenges. This engaging session aims to create a supportive space where we explore the transformative power of self-care and empowerment through community building and connections.

10:00 am – 11:30 am

Public Benefits: Advocating for a Meaningful Life

Speaker: Lydia Sheehey

Accessing benefits fosters greater autonomy for your adult child and lessens the burden on your financial life. Lydia will share her parent perspective and her expertise of public benefits to help you prepare for your adult child’s future after high school – sharing tools and tips that will save you time and money.

11:30 am – 12:30 pm

Exploring how to access Affordable Housing

Speaker: Doreen Cummings

Ensuring young adults with disabilities have the right housing for them is crucial. It helps them to be independent, promotes inclusivity, and allows them to live better, more fulfilling, and autonomous lives. Many different housing options are available to young adults, and the options that work best often depend on the diverse needs of the individual and what kind of funding is available. We’ll dive into the different models in this interactive discussion.

12:30 pm – 1:00 pm

Lunch and Discussion

We’ll conclude the day with an interactive lunch session. We’ll recap of the morning’s highlights and open the floor for a Q&A, providing you with the chance to dive deeper into any topics discussed by our speakers, and additional topics you want to discuss.

Register today

Free for families & professionals (includes certificate of attendance).

We’ll send you all of the details after you register.

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Event information

Location and address

The event will take place at Perkins School for the Blind in the Grousbeck Center at 55 Beechwood Ave, Watertown, MA, 02472.


There is a parking lot at the Grousbeck Center; you can park there.

Dietary restrictions

Please let us know in advance if you have any dietary restrictions.

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Visit our extensive Transition Center

Explore our tailored programs for students and expert resources for families and caregivers. Join our Transition workshops and supportive caregiver community. Let’s navigate the journey from high school to adulthood together.