For a group of families with special-needs adult children, the independent lifestyles they’ve dreamed of for their sons and daughters could become a reality. This is thanks to the fearless leadership of the McIntosh family, widespread community support, and the pro bono work of Attorney Sean O’Connell and Shaheen & Gordon, P.A.
Laurie McIntosh has two sons with cerebral palsy. Her children live in public housing in Dover, but often don’t get as much assistance as they need. Like many parents from the baby boomer generation, McIntosh worries about what will happen to her children when she is gone.
To find a solution for herself and many other parents of children with special needs, McIntosh became the executive director of a new, nonprofit project called Our Place Inc. She plans to “create a supportive housing residence in the Dover area where adults with developmental disabilities can live independently, with assistance as needed.”
Many parents whose children have Down syndrome, autism, and other disabilities, have pledged their support and expressed interest in the home. They spoke to Sea Coast Online about how much “peace of mind” the project would give them and expressed:
“to give [their children] independence and still know [they] will be safe means everything” to them.
How We Are Helping
While the project is still conceptual, it is quickly becoming more tangible. McIntosh is hard at work organizing the new non-profit and gaining 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, a process which Shaheen & Gordon, P.A. is assisting with on a pro bono basis. Once she achieves this, McIntosh will be able to begin fundraising for Our Place and start seeking a location for the home.
With the widespread backing and interest from our firm, the New Hampshire Housing Authority and Dover Mayor Bob Carrier, McIntosh is confident her dream can come to fruition:
“We think we can successfully house 10 residents in the home,” she says, “We already have a bunch of interested people, so many in fact that we are talking about a second home.”
Once the organization is established, McIntosh also believes it could become self-sustaining. She imagines a future funded by grants, donations, and resident contributions via Medicaid, Social Security, and Section 8 housing credits.
Everyone involved with the projects hopes to see a joyous grand opening within two years of the spring.
Our firm is no exception.
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