New Grant about Guardianship Alternatives

The Institute for Community Inclusion at the University of Massachusetts Boston has been awarded a 5-year $1.49 million-dollar grant from the Administration for Community Living. The Center on Youth Voice, Youth Choice (CYVYC) will work to increase the use of guardianship alternatives by youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) to maximize self-determination and autonomy.

The new center will conduct research, create  a sustainable model for capacity building and resource dissemination, and form a Youth Ambassador program that will train youth in leadership development and mentoring. In addition to directly engaging youth with IDD in the work of the project, CYVYC will be guided by an advisory committee, 75% of whom will be youth with IDD.

Principal Investigator Allison Hall explained, “Our research finds there is limited information on alternatives to guardianship for youth with IDD. We are excited to bring the voice of young adults with IDD into this work and support youth as leaders and change agents.”

The Center will be informed by ICI’s existing research funded by the Institute on Education Science, U.S. Department of Education, on how alternatives to guardianship during the transition process contribute to post-school outcomes.

ICI’s Director, Cindy Thomas also notes, “CPR, HSRI and the Georgia Advocacy Project have led efforts to design, implement and evaluate supported decision-making pilots. This work, along with the extensive array of resources developed by CPR will provide a strong foundation for the Center. I am excited by the opportunity ICI has to lead this work in partnership with a tremendous team.”

For more information contact: Allison Hall at