Children, Youth, & Their Families

Informing, Connecting, and Empowering families with knowledge and resources, The Arc is a partner in your journey to help your child develop their unique talents and interests.

The Arc connects parents and family members with the resources needed to feel confident and capable of helping their child thrive. Services are designed to complement existing resources for children and youth under the age of 21. Learning how to solve problems, make decisions, develop goals, and follow through builds self-reliance and trust in one’s ability to be successful.

When a child is diagnosed with a disability, the family is thrust into a new world; acronyms that everyone else seems to know, the uncertainty of where to turn, and an unclear way forward. With The Arc, families have a place to turn, a trusted partner in helping their child succeed. The Arc acts as a facilitator, a bridge to understanding the local resources and the people, support, and options available.

Caring for a child with a disability can be stressful. The added stress of not knowing who to turn to is unnecessary. The Arc connects families with the needed resources; the people, programs, and opportunities they need. And these connections start with a simple phone call to one person who will find the answer if they don’t already know it.

Project Learn

The Arc and its partner, Education Team Allies, are excited to announce the launch of Project Learn. The project, funded in part by the Developmental Disabilities Council of Maryland, will focus on supporting parents and the students with IDD to understand the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process and become strong self-advocates. Project Learn will assist families in developing an IEP (or 504) for their child that includes a meaningful vision as it pertains to further education and more. Learn more about Project Learn.

The Family Fund

To better understand the additional costs for families with a child with a disability, Researchers Mark Stabile and Sara Allin recently examined evidence about three kinds of costs; “direct, out-of-pocket costs incurred as a result of the child’s disability; indirect costs incurred by the family managing disability supports and long-term costs associated with the child’s future economic performance.” Stabile and Allin’s research titled, The Economic Costs of Childhood Disability, showed the average cost incurred supporting a child’s disability is $30,500 a year per, on top of the typical expenses of a family.

Because we know there are incredibly effective camps, therapies, equipment, and learning opportunities not fully covered by insurance and often out of reach financially, we developed the Family Fund. A grant program, the Family Fund is there to help fill gaps in providing quality of life enrichment needs for youth under the age of 21.

Additional information and frequently asked questions about the Family Fund

Holiday Giving Program

Every year, The Arc Central Chesapeake Region works diligently to ensure we can touch as many lives as possible during the holiday season. We understand the tremendous financial burden families have when they are caring for a child with special needs. Our hopes are that by partnering with local businesses and sponsors, we can lessen the burden for those who are in need by supplying holiday gifts to both the child with a disability and their siblings.

Learn more about the Holiday Giving Program

Transition Series

The Life Transition Series is comprised of workshops designed to provide families of students with developmental disabilities with valuable information and resources to facilitate a successful transition. Each session will focus on a specific topic and provide information that is crucial for preparing to enter adult life.


SibShops is a nationally recognized program that provides young siblings of children with disabilities peer support and information in a recreational and fun educational setting.

Sibshops is open to siblings in Anne Arundel County and is free of charge. All supplies and light refreshments are included.

Interested in The Arc’s Services?

At The Arc, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to our services. Our team takes time to fully understand your goals and develop opportunities that are a perfect fit for you and your family. The admissions process at The Arc consists of four basic phases, designed to identify the best options to achieve your specific goals.