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Navigating Regional Center Supports

On January 29, PRAGNYA presented the next workshop in our ENGAGE (Engaging Neurodiverse Groups Through Allyship, Growthmindset and Empowerment) parent education series. These parent training opportunities will continue to be offered in English and Spanish through March 2022, made possible through funding from the Department of Developmental Services.

Disability consultant and PRAGNYA Ally, Stella Lauerman presented on the topic of “Regional Center Services and Supports.” Stella’s 31-year-old neurodiverse son has been a Regional Center client since he was four years old, so she has extensive experience both as a parent and in supporting parents in learning about the Regional Center system. Workshop topics included:

  • the Lanterman Act, legislation that was passed in 1969 and named after California State Senator Frank Lanterman, that established the first Regional Centers. It is a California law that says people with developmental disabilities and their families have a right to get the services and supports they need to live like people without disabilities

  • the five qualifying conditions for Regional Center eligibility, and the seven categories of substantial disability, which are also part of the eligibility requirements

  • person-centered planning, which is the key to identifying the individualized services and supports for each Regional Center client, and

  • self-determination, available to all Regional Center clients as of 7/1/21, in which every person served by the Regional Center can choose to have a self-determination plan instead of the traditional service plan. The first of the five steps in the self-determination process is creating a Person-Centered Plan. PRAGNYA can support parents in the self-determination process as coaches and independent facilitators.

Other Elements covered in the workshop were about the important elements of the IPP process, and school-age, transition and adult services, and concluded with sharing advocacy resources.

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