What Does It Mean To Live In My Own Place?

Choosing where to live, who to live with, and how to live one’s life are basic rights. But for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) it can be particularly difficult to access those rights. In the past, living with family or in group homes may have been the only option. Today, many people aren’t aware of the different funding and supports available to help them live on their own. Even more challenging, applying for and finding the right housing is a complicated process that can take a long time.

To help people with I/DD understand their options for living independently in New York State, CUP worked with AHRC-NYC and design studio Second Marriage to create What Does It Mean To Live In My Own Place?, an illustrated guide. The foldout poster helps people with I/DD understand their rights and options, and address their questions on living independently. The guide also serves as a planning workbook to be filled out by people with I/DD and their supporters when they are preparing to live independently, complete with a list of resources on funding and where to get help.

AHRC-NYC is distributing What Does It Mean To Live In My Own Place? throughout New York State through their network of support sites and partner organizations serving over 15,000 people with I/DD.

Get your copy of the poster here

Resources & Links

AHRC-NYC is a family governed organization committed to finding ways for people with intellectual and other developmental disabilities to build full lives as defined by each person and supported by dedicated families, staff, and community partners.

Second Marriage is a design and illustration studio of Erin Rommel. Based in Brooklyn, the studio offers made-to-measure solutions to clients in cultural and social sectors around the world.

Making Policy Public is a program of the Center for Urban Pedagogy (CUP). CUP partners with policy advocates and graphic designers to produce foldout posters that explain complicated policy issues, like this one.

Funding Support

Support for this project was provided by the National Endowment for the Arts and public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

General support for CUP’s programs is provided in part by the David Rockefeller Fund, Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund, New York Foundation, Surdna Foundation, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. 

Special Thanks

Deja Holden, Jenn Anne Williams, Gary Lind, Michael Decker, Kathy Broderick, Shirley Berenstein, Tim Elliot, Janice Bartley, Timothy Hicks, Daphne Desinor, Emily Schwarz, Chad DeRoche, and all other self-advocates who gave feedback on the project 


  • CUP
  • Christine Gaspar
  • Oscar Nuñez
  • Advocacy Partner
  • Carole Gothelf
  • Nick Legowski
  • Jennifer Teich
  • Second Marriage
  • Designer 
  • Erin Rommel


    Janice Bartley Speaks at the Center for Urban Pedagogy
    • AHRC NYC
    • October 19, 2018

    Janet Bartley, Advocacy Specialist for AHRC NYC, spoke about her experience working with CUP to produce the Making Policy Public project, What Does It Mean To Live In My Own Place?