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As national disability policy prioritizes greater support for community-based integrated employment for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), the level of participation in services for other daytime activities continues to grow (Winsor & Butterworth, 2012). The role of services related to engagement and participation in community life has to date been largely undefined. The purpose of this brief is to offer a definition of Community Life Engagement, share reasons for its relevance and timeliness, and present results from a Community of Practice with administrators and personnel from seven state IDD agencies hosted by the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) in collaboration with the State Employment Leadership Network (SELN). It represents the first in a series of briefs by ICI on Community Life Engagement with the intention of providing guidance on its parameters for the field.


Community Life Engagement is a project of ThinkWork! at the Institute for Community Inclusion at UMass Boston. ThinkWork! is a resource portal offering data, personal stories, and tools related to improving employment outcomes for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.



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