Our biggest program, the Independent Living Program, receives thousands of calls a year for information regarding how to support a person with a disability. Calls for assistance come from people with disabilities, teachers, local businesses, counselors, family members, government officials, health care providers, non-profit professionals, and many others. MILC’s philosophy is about consumer choice, and we support and assist people with disabilities to achieve their goals. The IL program meets 1:1 with consumers and their support people to evaluate their needs.
Staff provide individual advocacy as well as systemic advocacy to facilitate policy changes in the community. When assisting individuals the goal of MILC staff is to teach individuals how to advocate for themselves to promote full inclusion within his or her community. MILC also engages in activities designed to affect positive change in local, state and federal systems affecting people with disabilities.
Staff provides assessment and training in areas such as money management, pre-vocational skills, utilizing transportation and other community resources, housekeeping, cooking, communication, self-advocacy and socialization.
MILC seeks to be the main source of information for persons needing information or referrals regarding disability-related issues in our region. Topics range from adaptive equipment aids, housing information, funding alternatives, benefits and legal rights.
Staff and trained volunteers are available to people with disabilities that are looking for support and assistance. Peer support is based on a mentoring concept, where a person with a disability provides information, assistance, support and/or serves as a role model for another person with a disability.
MILC offers a comprehensive program to assist people with disabilities who wish to leaving nursing home/institutional living and transition to community living. MILC also offers Youth Transition Services. We assist youth and their parents to prepare for the transition from school to adult living through attending IEP meetings, advocating for the student, providing independent living skills, creating future plans, and eliminating barriers to community living.
MILC can assist People with funding sources to help pay for AT and offers three funding sources though our office. The funding sources are Wisloan, Telework and TEPP.
WisLoan is a statewide, alternative loan program that allows Wisconsin residents or their families with a disability to purchase adaptive equipment, assistive technology or modify their homes so that they can live more independently.
Telework is a statewide, alternative loan program allowing Wisconsin residents with disabilities to purchase computers and other equipment needed to work from remote sites away from the office, including at home, on the road, or at a Telework center. In addition to the purchase of equipment, the loan funds can be used for training to use equipment, extended warranties, the cost of maintenance and repair.
Telecommunications Equipment Purchase Program (TEPP) helps people with disabilities buy equipment they need in order to use basic telephone services. The TEPP us paid for by the Wisconsin Universal Service Fund (USF).
MILC can provide informal assessments to individuals who want to make their homes accessible or improve accessibility. Government entities and businesses can also hire MILC for a formalized assessment of their programs, services and physical accessibility, including 504 assessments.
MILC staff can provide a thorough analysis of the benefits and services received by people with disabilities and the effect that income from employment will have on continued eligibility and benefit payments.
MILC strives to build fully inclusive communities that value people with disabilities and respect our differences. MILC educates communities in our region through presentations on disability awareness and etiquette, federal laws, ADA compliance and other independent living issues.