Self Advocacy

Visit Transition to Adulthood for more resources on the transition process. 

“Self-Advocacy is learning how to speak up for yourself, making your own decisions about your own life, learning how to get information so that you can understand things that are of interest to you, finding out who will support you in your journey, knowing your rights and responsibilities, problem solving, listening and learning, reaching out to others when you need help and friendship, and learning about self-determination.” from Wrightslaw.

Supported Decision Making

Supported decision-making can give individuals the assistance they need to make decisions for themselves.  For example, family members and friends can help point out risks, advantages, and consequences of a decision.  Things can be explained in a way that the person can understand, giving them information for making the choice.

Michigan Resources

Michigan Disability Rights Coalition

  • Her Power! Her Pride! is an annual four-day event for high school girls with disabilities in Michigan.
  • Boys Program is an annual event for high school boys with disabilities in Michigan.
  • Proud and Powerful are customized workshops regarding disability history, culture, identity, and pride.
  • MDRC Youth is a virtual space for teens with disabilities to connect.

Michigan Developmental Disabilities Council (DD Council) works to support people with developmental disabilities to achieve life dreams. The 21-member Council is appointed by the Governor, and supported by a Lansing-based staff.  Meetings of the Council are public – anyone may attend.

Partners Advancing Self-Determination provides free state-level technical assistance, training, and support to help make sure people are able to direct their own services.

Possibilities Video Series The Michigan Developmental Disabilities Institute’s (MI-DDI) award winning Possibilities series of videos focuses on the lives and accomplishments of individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities.  Each 4-7 minute video highlights the journeys of different individuals, along with their family and friends, and illustrates the lives possible for all people as they mature, become independent, and pursue their life’s dreams and goals

Self-Advocates of Michigan  is a statewide organization led by leaders with developmental disabilities.  It promotes the values of diversity, inclusion, equal rights and the self -determination of individuals with disabilities

More Self-Advocacy Resources

Kids as Self Advocates (KASA) is a national, grassroots project created by youth with disabilities for youth. We are teens and young adults with disabilities speaking out. KASA knows youth can make choices and advocate for themselves if they have the information and support they need.

Partners in Living is a self-study course created to help people with developmental disabilities, their family and friends explore four important elements that, together, can help them create a meaningful life: Self-Determination, Family Support, Community Living and Assistive Technology.

A Guide to Legislative Advocacy for Youth with Disabilities is a guide from NCLD Action Center to help youth communicate about the importance of a policy issue or law to people who are in a position to change it.

Self Advocacy Online  Find Self-Advocacy groups; view stories from Self-Advocates, Learn about Self-Advocacy and find News you can Use.