Helping Young People Achieve Their Goals: Center for Self-Advocacy

Transitioning to adulthood is a challenge for many young people. This challenge is further heightened for individuals with intellectual disabilities (ID) as they move from children to adult services. Studies show that individuals with ID are more likely to have poorer post school outcomes relative to their peers without disabilities. Recently, the Tower Foundation provided … Continued

LDA Builds Parents’ Confidence in Advocacy Skills

2018 marked the end of a three-year grant to the Learning Disabilities Association of Western New York (“LDA”) for its Equitable Education Advocacy Program, which helps parents build their capacity to advocate for a child with a learning disability. Parents are often not sure what kinds of accommodations can help their child succeed in school, … Continued

The phrases "Join the Conversation" and "Let's Talk Stigma" on either side of a microphone.

Join the Conversation: An Anti-Stigma Campaign

Back in the fall of 2015, a coalition of Erie County-based behavioral health providers, agencies, and funders began to take shape. The group, coming together as the Erie County Anti-Stigma Coalition, dedicated itself to addressing the negative perceptions that so many continue to have about mental health challenges and people who deal with these challenges. … Continued

Two pictures-2 smiling girls sitting working on lessons and then group shot of boys and teacher working through problems

Building Capacity to Adopt New Curriculum

The Research Institute for Learning and Development (ResearchILD) was granted $205,000 in 2016 to build a robust, school-wide approach to implementing an Executive Function (EF) curriculum in Saugus, Massachusetts at the Belmonte Middle School. ResearchILD is a nonprofit located just outside of Essex County in Lexington, that designs, implements, and evaluates programs that strengthen EF … Continued

Six girls standing at rail overlooking water, backs toward camera, looking into water

Restoring a Long-Lost Language

The Wôpanâak Nation seizes an opportunity to use words for good   Finding the right words to express yourself in the face of stress can be difficult enough. But not having the actual words to describe the experience in the language of your culture can be even harder. For the Wôpanâak Nation in Mashpee, Massachusetts, … Continued

Boys running on basketball court, one boy going for ball

Unifying Students Through Sports

Special Olympics of Massachusetts (SOMA) connects young people with disabilities to sports and activities designed to build their skills, confidence, and social connections. The Tower Foundation is a longtime supporter of SOMA’s work on the Cape, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket, and it seemed only natural for the Foundation to support additional efforts in Essex County. … Continued

Caring for Moms-To-Be With Substance Use Disorders

Catholic Health steps in on the opioid epidemic   Women with substance use disorders come from all walks of life. The disorder does not discriminate and can be hard to identify. This can make neonatal care difficult for doctors and nurses who unfortunately aren’t able to identify a patient with the disorder before it’s too … Continued

Stimulating Dialogue Around Mental Health

How 16 community groups and leaders created an anti-stigma movement   Understanding that the shame associated with mental illness keeps many people from seeking help, a small group of mental health professionals began developing an idea for a public campaign to raise awareness about the issue in 2015. From there, it was not long before … Continued

Asian instructor with notebook and pencil in hand, showing a boy his work, a girl is standing to the right, also with a notebook in hand, waiting for instructor to check her work

Reimagine Learning in Massachusetts

Nearly six years ago, the Tower Foundation began working with Reimagine Learning, a sprawling network of social entrepreneurs, funders, policymakers, and researchers working to transform the way learning happens in America. The goal was clear: create learning environments for all students, particularly those with learning disabilities. In addition to the overall aim, it was a priority to … Continued

Women wearing head scarf with head on desk and hands, looking at two children

Seeing Eye to Eye Through Mentorship

Anyone who’s been there will agree: Middle school is hard. And for middle school students with learning disabilities, it can often feel like they’ll never quite measure up, leading them to feel isolated and to struggle in silence. To help address this tough stage in life, the Tower Foundation provided funding to bring Eye to … Continued