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DDS Family Support Centers

Each Family Support Center provides the following array of services and supports for families: Information & Referral, Family Trainings, Parent Networking, Community Connections & Resources, Service Navigation, Administration of Flexible Funding.

Table of Contents

Family Support Centers

Family Support Centers across the state provide a local presence and act as a hub for offering a wide range of general family support services and activities to families of children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.  There is at least one Family Support Center in each DDS Area, with some Areas having more than one.  Broad outreaches is the expectation for the centers and provide services to families from diverse cultural, ethnic and linguistic communities in the geographic area they are serving, which may involve creating partnerships with community organizations and other resources in order to provide culturally responsive services.  Center staff are expected to be experts in generic resources and services in their respective areas and work with families to maximize natural supports.  Centers are expected to encourage active family involvement and consultation to identify interests and needs in developing activities and service options.

Family Support and Autism Support Centers are able to assist families in submitting an application for eligibility and provide assistance and support throughout the intake process as requested by families. This includes helping families understand how to complete the necessary steps to apply for DDS eligibility (e.g., whom to call, paperwork). Families are able to access some of the general services of the Family Support and Autism Support Centers prior to their child or adult family member being found eligible for DDS services, such as Information and referral and trainings.



  • Assistance to families in identifying resources and service options available in their local communities, as well as learning about other financial and/or state services for which families may be eligible (MassHealth, etc.), and provide guidance on how to navigate the service system.  This can occur through phone contacts, 1:1 meeting at a variety of locations.  
  • Use of technology to provide a variety of ways to share information with families.
  • A “library” of resources, such as helpful websites, fact sheets, community resources, information technology resource options, books, videos, etc. 



Sponsor educational events and trainings on relevant topics of interest to families of both children and adults which are open to all families for participation. 




Promote parent networking and mentoring, such as parent support groups, parent connections (1:1 matching), and sibling support opportunities, as well as parental involvement in organizing or leading activities, etc. 



Foster community affiliations and connections to explore and maximize the use of natural and generic resources and other potential sources of funding.



Comprehensive and individualized information, guidance, and support to families to address their needs, connect them to potential resources, assist with problem-solving, and help them navigate the service system. The level of involvement with each family will vary based on the needs of the individual and family. There are two types of Service Navigation:


  • Short-Term Service Navigation The design is for families who will benefit from more individualized assistance for a period of time to obtain information, to receive assistance in accessing other services, or to receive guidance in addressing some specific problems. Development of an action plan with families occurs to focus on specific objectives. 
  • Extended Service Navigation The design is to provide ongoing support and coordination of services. Each Center has the capacity to provide Extended Service Navigation to an identified number of individuals/families. The Area Office must make referrals for this service, but the family, Family Support Center staff, or the Area Office can initiate the request. This service can also assist families to help plan and organize in-home supports they need to support their family member at home. Development of a Family Support Plan is an aid to remain focused on goals.


The Department may provide individual, flexible funding allocations to families based on the priority of need of the family and available budget resources. This funding must be used for allowable supports, services, or goods as defined in the Department’s Addendum to the Family Support Guidelines and Procedures, January 2011. 

Central/West Region Family Support Centers

Berkshire Area

Berkshire County Arc      Berkshire County Arc Central & Southern Berkshire County Family Support Center

46 Elm Street, Pittsfield, MA 01201

(413) 464-7262

Sonja Stewart


United Cerebral Palsy (2 sites)

UCP Central Berkshire Family Support Center

535 Curran Highway, North Adams, MA 01247

(413) 664-9345

Jennifer Summers

UCP Central Berkshire Family Support Center

208 West Street,

Pittsfield, MA 01201

(413) 442-1562

Jennifer Summers


Franklin/Hampshire Area


Family Empowerment

41 Russell Street,

Hadley, MA 01035

(413) 585-8010

Donna Kushi


The United Arc

Franklin County Family Support Center

294 Avenue A,

Turners Falls, MA 01376

(413) 774-5558

Sue Jones


The United Arc

North Quabbin Family Support Center-GAAAFSN

361 Main Street,

Athol, MA 01331

(978) 249-4052;

(413) 774-5558

Sue Jones


Holyoke/Chicopee Area

Multicultural Community Services

MCS Family Support Center

260 Westfield Road, Holyoke, MA 01040

(413) 534-3299

Karen Fletcher

North Central Area

Seven Hills Family Services

Family Support Center of North Central

1460 John Fitch Highway, Fitchburg, MA  01402

978) 632-4322

Gina Bernard


Centro                                              Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

Multicultural Family Development Center

437 Main Street,

Fitchburg, MA 01420

(978) 343-5836

Ydalia Heimann

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group:                 Multicultural families

South Valley Area

Kennedy Donovan Center

Kennedy Donovan Center

1 Maple Street,

Milford, MA  01757

(508) 473-5700

Karissa Hicks


Seven Hills Family Services

Family Support Center of South Valley

208 Charlton Road, Sturbridge, MA 01566

(508) 796-1950

Elizabeth Carroll:

Springfield/Westfield Area

Multicultural Community Services

MCS Family Support Center

1000 Wilbraham Road, Springfield, MA  01109

(413) 782-2500

Mary Beattie


New North Citizen’s Council, Inc      Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

New North Family Support Center

11 Wilbraham Road 2nd Floor, Springfield, MA 01109

(413) 731-3110

Erin Courtney

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group:                 Multicultural families in urban Springfield


New North Citizen’s Council, Inc.     Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

The SC@N 360 Family Center

11 Wilbraham Road 2nd Floor, Springfield, MA 01109

(413) 731-3110

Erin Courtney

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group:                 Ethnically diverse families in the Greater Springfield Area

Worcester Area

Seven Hills Family Services

Family Support Center of Greater Worcester

799 West Boylston Street, Worcester, MA  01606

(508) 796-1850

Ana Morales


Centro                                              Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

Worcester Multicultural Family Support Center

11 Sycamore Street, Worcester, MA 01608

(508) 798-1900 x 243

Ydalia Heimann

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group: Multicultural Families

Metro Region Family Support Centers

Charles River West Area

Cambridge Family and Children’s Service

Cambridge Family & Children’s Service

60 Gore Street, Cambridge, MA 02141

(617) 876-4210 x 4259

Brenda Beaton

Greater Boston Area

Bay Cove

Bay Cove Family Support Center

66 Canal Street,

Boston, MA 02114

(617) 371-3121

Teresa Wilson



Vinfen Corp. DDS Family Support Center

260 Milton St, Suite 101, Dedham Ma 02026

(617) 562-4094

Sethany Griffin


Work Inc.

Work Inc. Family Support Center

25 Beach Street, Dorchester, MA 02122

(617) 691-1601

Tuan Le


Advocates                                        Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

Project Able

888 Washington Street Suite 102,

Boston, MA 02111

1881 Worcester Road,  Framingham, MA 01701

(617) 988-8132

Andy Law

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group:                 Chinese and Vietnamese Families


HAPHI                                               Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

Haitian Family Support Center

1603 Blue Hill Avenue, Mattapan, MA 02126

(617) 298-8076

Renald Raphael

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group: Haitian Families


Dimock Community Service Corp.    Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

Dimock Family Support Center

55 Dimock Street, Roxbury, MA 02119

(617) 442-8800 ext.1204

Tom Morris

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group:                 African American/Multicultural Families


Work Inc.                                          Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center


25 Beach Street, Dorchester, MA 02122

(617) 691-1620

Rosa Robledo        

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group:              Latin American Families


Middlesex West Area


Charles River Center

Charles River Center

4 Strathmore Road,

Natick, MA  01760            


Gissi Cruz


Thrive Support & Advocacy

Thrive Support & Advocacy.

65 Boston Post Road West Suite 220 Marlborough, MA  01752

(508) 485-4227 x1004

Mike Diggins


Newton/South Norfolk Area

Charles River Center

Charles River Center

59 East Militia Heights Road, Needham, MA


(781) 972-1048

Gissi Cruz


The ARC of South Norfolk

The Arc of South Norfolk Family Support Center

789 Clapboardtree Street, Westwood, MA 02090

(781) 762-4001

Deb Wood

Northeast Region Family Support Centers

Central Middlesex Area

Riverside Community Care

Riverside Family Support Center

300 West Cummings Park, Suite 354,

Woburn, MA 01801

(781) 801-5247          

Kristen D’Andrea

(781) 801-5247;;

                                             Kaley Stoner

(781) 686-6073;

                                             Katie Davis

(781) 801-5683;;

                                             Val Moya

(781) 686-5149;


Lowell Area

LifeLinks, Inc.

LifeLinks Family Support Center

4 Omni Way,

Chelmsford, MA 01824

Kelly Atkins

(978) 349-3005

Shannon Kaiser

(978) 349-3039


Cambodian Mutual Assistance         Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

Association of Greater Lowell

Monorom Family Support Program

465 School Street,

Lowell, MA 01851

(978) 454-6200 ext.1026

Visal Chin

Specific Ethnic/Linguistic Group:              Cambodian families


Merrimack Valley Area

Fidelity House Human Services

Merrimack Valley Family Support Center

439 Union Street, Suite 401 Lawrence, MA 01843

(978) 685-9471 (x157)

Sue Lunn (x157)

Elizabeth Grady (x183);


Metro North Area

The Arc of East Middlesex

The Arc of East Middlesex Family Resource Center.

30 Audubon Road, Wakefield, MA 01880

60D Audubon Road, Wakefield, MA 01880

(781) 587-2314

Judy Santamaria


North Shore Area

Northeast Arc

Northeast Arc Family Resources

6 Southside Road,

Danvers, MA 01923

(978) 624-2381

Aymee Lucifora


Bridgewell                                        Cultural/Linguistic-Specific Family Support Center

Bridgewell Family Support Center        

66 Silsbee Street,

Lynn, MA 01901

(339) 883-1761

Judith G. Doherty

Southeast Region Family Support Centers

Brockton Area

Brockton Area Arc

Brockton Area Arc

1250 West Chestnut Street, Brockton, MA 02301

(508) 583-8030 x224

Kathy Kerwin


Cape Cod and the Islands Area

Kennedy-Donovan Center

Kennedy-Donovan Center

30 Ansel Hallet Road,

West Yarmouth, MA 02673

(774) 352-1305

Glenn Loomis


Martha’s Vineyard Community Services

Martha’s Vineyard Community Services

111 Edgartown Road, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568

(508) 693-7900

Kathi Hackett, x249


Fall River Area

People Inc.

Family Support Center, a program of People Incorporated

1 Father DeValles Boulevard, Suite 401

Fall River, MA 02723

(774) 488-5320

Marilyn Grubb


New Bedford Area


Family Connections Center, Nemasket

109 Fairhaven Road, Mattapoisett, MA 02739

(508) 999-4436

Sandra Heller


Plymouth Area

The Arc of Plymouth and Cape Cod

The Arc of Greater Plymouth

52 Armstrong Road, Plymouth, MA 02360

(508) 732-9292, ext. 117

Kristine Marquis; Family Support Director, DESE, Recreation & AWC


South Coastal Area


South Coastal Family Support Center

1189 R North Main Street, Randolph, MA 02368

(781) 767-3048

Alicia Cannon

Fatima Baptista


South Shore Support Services

South Shore Support Services

435 Columbian Street, Weymouth, MA 02190

(781) 331-7878

Renee McCorkle


Taunton/Attleboro Area

The Arc of Bristol County

The Arc of Bristol County

141 Park Street, Attleboro, MA 02703

(508) 226-1445

Joan Badger

Donna Brown


Tri- Area (Brockton, Plymouth, South Coastal)


BAMSI Family Support Center

155 Webster Street – Unit D,

Hanover, MA 02339

(781) 878-4074 ext. 11

Michael Lonergan