Need help finding a personal care attendant? Looking for advice or support from someone with the same disability as you? Want to find an accessible form of recreation? All this and much more is available at your local independent living center.
Independent living centers provide assistance to people with all kinds of disabilities. These agencies were created to promote independence and self-determination for individuals, as well as to offer support and information to families and communities. Services provided by independent living centers include: peer support, information and referral, independent living skills training, coordination of personal care and other services, advocacy and community education.
Independent living centers are community-based, non-residential, non-profit agencies in the private sector. A majority of the members of the boards governing these agencies are people with disabilities.
The federal Rehabilitation Act establishes many of the definitions and requirements for the operation of the centers. In Wisconsin, Wis. Stat. § 46.96 governs state contracts with independent living centers. The contracts are administered by Bureau of Aging and Disability Resources staff in the Department of Health Services. For questions, please contact Lisa Sobczyk at 608-266-9354.
Independent living centers receive a large share of their funding through federal and state grants. Independent living centers supplement their budgets with funds from other agenciessuch as United Way, county social service agencies and private foundations.
The Wisconsin Client Assistance Program investigates and resolves complaints about services received or requested from independent living centers. The program can be reached at 800-362-1290 (voice and TTY).