Our Core Services
As part of the independent living philosophy of consumer directed services, our staff will provide information so consumers can make informed choices and achieve their objectives.
Independent Living Skills
Provided on a one-to-one basis. Training areas include but are not limited to: managing a personal care assistant, steps to locating accessible, affordable housing, and use of city bus and para-transit systems.
Information and Referral
Options staff provide information about community services and resources. Topics ranging from adaptive equipment aids, housing information, funding alternatives, benefits and legal rights issues can be researched and answered.
Options staff and trained volunteers, who have personally experienced a disability and have attained a substantial degree of independence, can assist an individual to learn how to cope with his/her disability through the sharing of real-life experiences.
Options staff provide training, information and support to promote an individual's right to full inclusion within his/her community. Our staff encourages and supports individuals to become involved in local, state and federal legislative issues that affect persons with disabilities.
Additional Services We Offer
The following services were developed in response to defined consumer and community needs. Fees are charged on several services.
AT Staff can assess an individual to determine the role assistive technology could play in achieving his/her independent living goals. Options unique office facility is a showcase of assistive technology and modifications in a home-like environment that is a showcase for people with disabilities, their families, human service professionals, students and the general public.
Staff will do an assessment of an individual’s home and make recommendations on modifications necessary to maximum independence an safety.
An individual with a disability is provided a review of their current benefits and an explanation of how those benefits might be affected by employment, including identifying available work incentive programs and alternate benefits for health care related services. The individual is given detailed information about his/her benefits, which will allow him/her to make an informed decision about employment.
Medicaid Personal Care Program
Options Personal Care Program empowers people with disabilities to manage their personal care services. Options for Independent Living offers a consumer directed Personal Care Program for people with disabilities who are:
- Medicaid beneficiaries,
- Require personal care services and
- Have identified an individual to provide personal care.
Options provides an array of services to our community including assessment and technical assistance to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, presentations on disability awareness and sensitive communication, and 504 public housing assessments. Staff are involved in various community boards and committees at the state and local level.
AT Staff can assess an individual’s computer and related technology needs. Recommendations are made for computer hardware, software and assistive devices such as voice input, specialized keyboards and other software as appropriate.
Options accepts used adaptive equipment such electric and manual wheelchairs, tub transfer benches, raised toilet seats, crutches, walkers and canes. These devices are “loaned” to individuals who do not have insurance or resources to purchase the respective item(s).
Options collaborates with the Wheelchair Recycling Program (WRP) for equipment in need of repair and refurbishing. That equipment is then sold to the public at reduced rates.
Options has a variety of Assistive Technology (AT) that individuals can “Try-out” to determine if the device will work for them prior to purchasing equipment. Staff can assist with finding appropriate vendors and financing as resources are available.
Individuals with a disability (or immediate family members) who own their own home and need renovations for accessibility and meet HUD Low to Moderate family income guidelines may be eligible for a deferred, no interest loan that would be paid when the home is sold. In addition to accessibility modifications, other areas of the home including electrical, plumbing, safety issues may qualify for upgrade/replacement.
Options LEND Closet
For those of you who are not familiar, Options has a used adaptive equipment loan program (LEND) with donated durable medical equipment.
The Wisconsin Telework Loan Program is a statewide, alternative loan program that allows Wisconsin residents with disabilities to purchase computers and other equipment needed to work from home or other remote sites away from the office, such as work on the road or at a telework center. Staff can discuss eligibility criteria and assist in completing an application. Telework Loan interest rate is 6.5%.
The Wisconsin WisLoan Program is a statewide, alternative loan program that allows Wisconsin residents with disabilities to purchase adaptive equipment or make home modifications. Any Wisconsin resident with a disability in need of assistive technology or home modifications is eligible to apply for a loan. Individuals may apply on behalf of a person with a disability as long as the assistive technology or home modification is to be used by the person who has the disability. Options Staff can discuss eligibility criteria and assist in completing an application. Wisloan interest rate is 6.5%.
AT Staff can go to the individual’s place of employment to assess a worker’s tasks and make recommendations to maximize independence, safety, and efficiency at work.