young woman in wheelchair with friend kneeling next to her

My child’s a teen now.

I want her to have the best life she can. Be as successful as she can. Have a job where people appreciate her for who she is and what she can do. Have friends, independence, a good life.

Life is expensive for families like mine, who have kids with special needs. Her SSI check is one of the few things we can count on. I worry about her future, and the future of our family.



NY PROMISE is a research project for families with 14-16 year old teens who receive SSI. The goal is to explore the best ways to help kids who have disabilities and are on SSI, transition from high school to successful adult lives.


It’s getting started in 3 areas of the state: New York City, the Capital Region, and Western New York. It is a joint project of the agencies listed below. And it’s being led by the NYS Department of Mental Health and Cornell University.

2000 families can enroll in PROMISE. PROMISE will provide extra services for 1000 students and families. Another group of 1000 will receive the transition to adulthood services they are entitled to through their schools and in the community, and receive gifts cards for participating in occasional surveys. Enrollment is FREE, and your family will be helping to make a difference to the entire special needs community.

PROMISE results will help improve services so that all children with special needs - especially those who are from families with limited income - can have more financial security, a better quality of life, and even a real job that fits their skills, abilities, and interests.

PROMISE services will be designed especially for young people with special needs and their families to help them understand the world of work, discover what they like to do, and to find a place that brings out their best. And where they can earn a real paycheck.

To learn more...please contact:

Michelle Podolec, Project Coordinator
607.255.6270 (voice)


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Our Partners

PROMISE partners