California Parent OrganizationsList of California agencies providing resources for families of children with disabilities.
Parent Organizations and the California Department of Education
The California Department of Education (CDE), Special Education Division, works closely with federal- and-state-funded parent organizations to increase parent participation and collaboration between parents and educators to improve the educational system.
Each Parent Training and Information Center (PTIC) is a parent-directed non-profit 501(c)(3) organization funded by the U.S. Department of Education, authorized under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and often enhanced by private sources. Every state in the United States has a funded PTIC.
IDEA states that PTICs will provide parents of children, ages birth through twenty-six with disabilities, including low-income parents, parents of limited English-proficient children, and parents with disabilities, with the training and information they need to enable them to participate effectively in helping their children with disabilities to:
- meet developmental and functional goals, and the challenging academic achievement goals that have been established for all children;
- be prepared to lead productive, independent adult lives, to the maximum extent possible; and
- provide training and information on parent rights, responsibilities, and protections under IDEA in order to develop the skills necessary to cooperatively and effectively participate in planning and decision-making relating to early intervention, educational, and transitional services.
These core programs and services are offered by each of the California PTICs:
- Workshops which cover:
- Disability awareness programs
- Individualized Educational Programs (IEPs)
- Parent and student rights and responsibilities under IDEA
- Parent mentor training
- Transition to public school
- Transition from school to adult life
- Surrogate Parent Appointment and Responsibilities
- Parent-to-Parent Support
- Assistance and Advocacy for educational issues and other services (e.g., Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Respite)
- Support Groups
- Information and Referral
- Resource Library and Information Packets on a variety of topics including different types of disabilities
Collectively, the PTIC's newsletters reach 55,000 readers in California, and over 60,000 parents and professionals contact the PTICs annually.
PTIC Contact Information
|Exceptional Parents Unlimited|| 559-229-2000
| 4440 North First Street,
Fresno, CA 93726
|Disability Rights and Education Defense Fund (DREDF)|| 510-644-2555
| 3075 Adeline Street, Suite 210,
Berkeley, CA 94703
|94 Galli Drive, Suite C, Novato, CA firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Parents Helping Parents of Santa Clara|| 408-727-5775
| 1400 Parkmoor Avenue, Suite 100,
San Jose, CA 95126
|Support for Families of Children with Disabilities|| 415-282-7494
| 2601 Mission Street. #606,
San Francisco, CA 94110-3111
|Team of Advocates for Special Kids (TASK)|| 714-533-8275
| 100 West Cerritos Avenue,
Anaheim, CA 92805
|WarmLine Family Resource Center|| 916-455-9500
| 2791 24th Street,
Sacramento, CA 95818
The Community Parent Resource Center (CPRC), as described in 20 United States Code 1472, will help ensure that underserved parents of children, ages birth through twenty-six with disabilities, including low income parents, parents of limited English-proficient children, and parents with disabilities, have the training and information the parents need to enable the parents to participate effectively in helping their children with disabilities.
Each CPRC shall:
- provide training and information that meets the training and information needs of parents of children with disabilities,
- carry out the activities required of PTICs, and
- be designed to meet the specific needs of families who experience significant isolation from available sources of information and support.
CPRC Contact Information
|Chinese Parents Association for the Disabled||Rachel Chen||626-307-3837|| PO Box 2884
San Gabriel, CA 91778
|Fiesta Educativa||Irene Martinez|| 323-221-6696
| 163 South Avenue 24, Suite 201,
Los Angeles, CA 90031
|Loving Your Disabled Child||Sherilyn Miles-Rosette|| 323-373-0323
| 2083 Santa Ana Boulevard North,
Los Angeles, CA 90059
|n/a||Serving most of Los Angeles County|
|Parents of Watts||Alice Harris|| 323-566-7556
| 10828 Lou Dillon Avenue,
Los Angeles, CA 90059
|email@example.com||Serving most of Los Angeles County with Loving Your Disabled Child|
|Vietnamese Parents with Disabled Children Association, Inc||Hung Gia Nguyen|| 714-527-9216
| 7526 Syracuse Avenue,
Stanton, CA 90680
|firstname.lastname@example.org||Serving Los Angeles and Orange Counties|
SB 511, enacted as Education Code 56400-56414 , established the Family Empowerment Centers (FECs). The FECs provide services to families with children with disabilities ages three to twenty-two. The intent of the legislature is to ensure that parents, guardians, and families of children and young adults with disabilities have access to accurate information, specialized training, and peer-to-peer support. Each FEC is a non-profit 501 (c)(3). Funding for the FECs is based upon a specific formula. A rate of $150,000.00 is allocated annually to each center to provide the basic services. Additional funding for each FEC is determined according to school enrollment of the region served.
As a condition of funding each FEC shall do all of the following:
- provide training and information that meets the needs of the parents and guardians of children and young adults with disabilities;
- work with community based organizations;
- provide training and support to parents and guardians of children and young adults with disabilities;
- participate in decision-making processes and the development of individualized education programs;
- promote positive parent and professional collaboration with local education agencies, special education local plan areas, and other community agencies; and
- participate and support surrogate parent training.
Funded FEC Service Areas
|Imperial, San Diego||Exceptional Family Resource Center|
|Fresno, Kings||Exceptional Parents Unlimited|
|State-wide (information)||Family Empowerment and Disability Council Technical Assistant Project|
|Sutter, Yuba, Colusa||Family Soup|
|Los Angeles||Family Focus Empowerment Center|
|Kern||H.E.A.R.T.S. Connection FRC|
|Napa, Solano, Sonoma||Matrix Parent Network & Resource Center|
|Santa Clara||Parents Helping Parents, Inc.|
|Los Angeles||Parents' Place|
|Lassen, Modoc, Plumas, Sierra||Plumas Rural Services, Inc.|
|Butte, Glenn, Shasta, Siskiyou, Tehama, Trinity||Rowell Family Empowerment of Northern California|
|San Benito, Santa Cruz||Special Parents Information Network|
|San Francisco||Support for Families of Children with Disabilities|
|Orange||Team of Advocates for Special Kids, Inc.|
|Los Angeles||Westside Family Resource Center|
FEC Contact and Service Information
|Exceptional Family Resource Center||619-594-7416|| 9245 Sky Park Court
San Diego, CA 92123
The Exceptional Family Resource Center (EFRC) assists families to better understand their child's disability, educational, and developmental needs; access appropriate levels of service delivery; and build positive relationships between parents and professionals for the success of their child. Service area includes San Diego and Imperial Counties.
|Exceptional Parents Unlimited (EPU)||559-229-2000|| 4440 North First Street
Fresno, CA 93726
Serving Fresno and Kings Counties in partnership with United Cerebral Palsy of Hanford
The goal of the EPU is to connect families with staff members who are parents and family members of a loved one living with a disability. We equip them with knowledge through workshops and clinics on special education processes, laws, rights, and responsibilities, as well as collaborate with parents and professionals through phone calls and meetings in order to best serve the person with special needs and continue to encourage families to advocate for their family.
| 1000 G Street, 5th Floor
Sacramento, CA 95814
WestEd Center for Prevention and Early Intervention
|Family Focus Resource and Empowerment Center|| 818-677-6854
||18111 Nordhoff Street Northridge, CA 91330-8265||
The FFEC provides:
|Family SOUP||530-751-1925|| 1650 Sierra Avenue
Yuba City, CA 95993
Family SOUP serves families with a concern about their child's development, school performance and access, or social-emotional well-being in Sutter, Yuba, and Colusa counties. The center provides parent-to-parent support, system navigation, and guidance and individual support for parents in school meetings such as IEPs, 504s, and student study teams.
|H.E.A.R.T.S. Connection Family Resource Center and Empowerment Center||661-328-9055|| 200 South Montclair Street, Suite A
Bakersfield, CA 93309
H.E.A.R.T.S Connection Family Resource Center originated in 1990 utilizing grant funding from the Department of Developmental Services to serve families of children with special needs who reside in Kern County. Their stated mission is "to enhance the quality of life for people with special needs through a family-directed resource center that symbolizes professionalism, dignity, compassion, and respect."
Services include: county-wide support groups, monthly calendars in English and Spanish, a sibling program, parent informational trainings, information dissemination to the community, and social activities for special families.
|Matrix Parent Network & Resource Center|| 415-884-3535
|| 94 Galli Drive, Suite C
Novato, CA 94949
Serving Northern California with Parents Helping Parents of Santa Clara
Matrix was founded in 1983 to provide support to families who have children with special needs. Matrix FEC serves Napa, Sonoma, and Solano counties. There are no fees for services to families.
|Parents Helping Parents, Inc.||408-727-5775|| 1400 Parkmoor Avenue,
San Jose, CA 95126
Serving Northern California with Matrix and DREDF
Parents Helping Parents, Inc. (PHP), founded in 1976, is a parent-directed family resource center offering information, training, and support services for children with special needs, their families, and the professionals who serve them. Their services benefit children of all ages and backgrounds who have a need for special services due to illness, accidents, birth defects, allergies, learning disorders, family stress, or any other reason.
The goal of the PHP FEC is to ensure that Santa Clara County families who have children with special needs between the ages of three through twenty-two, especially underserved families, have access to the information, training, and support they need to be positively and effectively involved in their children's education. Examples of PHP services include Special Education trainings, bilingual/cultural outreach, information packets, resource library, a website, peer counseling, and telephone support.
| 1550 South Hyacinth Avenue Suite B,
West Covina, CA 91791
Since its inception in 1989, the mission of Parents' Place has been to provide hope and support for families with children with special needs through education and community resources. In 1997, Parents' Place incorporated to become its own non-profit entity. In October 2006, Parents' Place was awarded a FEC grant from the CDE that now allows them to serve all families with children with special needs from three to twenty-two as well as the zero to three population. Services include: warmline and parent-to-parent support; eight support groups; annual Birth to Five Disabilities/Possibilities Seminar; annual Information Fair & Festival; Santa Photo Day; quarterly newsletter, book/video toy lending library and resource directory; training workshops; and Transitioning from High School...What You Need To Know Conference.
It has always been the philosophy of Parents' Place that families with children with special needs are, like all families, an integral part of the community in which they live and should be empowered and supported to live up to their fullest potential. Collaboration with agencies and professionals in our community has been an instrumental part of fulfilling that philosophy and we greatly appreciate the efforts of all who work with us.
|Plumas Rural Services, Inc.|| 530-283-2735 x880
| 711 E Main Street,
Quincy, CA 95971
Plumas Rural Services, Inc. (PRS) is dedicated to "improving the quality of life by promoting the health, education, and well-being of local residents and families." PRS is a multi-program agency. Services include: child care resource and referral; subsidized child care; child care food program; family child care network; domestic violence family focus network; women, infant, and children; in-home respite, child abuse treatment, senior connections, family center on disabilities and ALIVE, a training and support for adults with special needs.
|Rowell Family Empowerment of Northern California (RFENC)||530-226-5129|| 2701 Old Eureka Way
Redding CA 96001
Serving Far Northern California
RFENC offers the following services for families of children with disabilities:
|Special Parents Information Network (SPIN)||
| P.O. Box 2367
Santa Cruz, CA 95063
SPIN FEC serves Santa Cruz and San Benito counties (location TBA) and will be staffed by a PT Director, a PT parent-support coordinator and a PT training coordinator. FEC will provide a walk-in service at their office with parent meeting spaces and a resource library with Internet access. FEC focus is to provide parent support and training regarding education and the IEP process for parents of children ages three to twenty-two, and offer a parent-mentor program, informational events, support groups and networking events.
|Support for Families of Children with Disabilities||
| 1663 Mission Street, Suite 700
San Francisco, CA 94103
Serving San Francisco
Since 1982, Support for Families of Children with Disabilities has offered information, education, and parent-to-parent support free of charge to families of children with any kind of disability or special health care needs in San Francisco.
|Team of Advocates for Special Kids, Inc.||866-828-8275|| 100 West Cerritos Avenue
Anaheim, CA 92805-6546
Serving Southern California
Team of Advocates for Special Kids, Inc. works to:
|Westside Family Resource Center||310-258-4063|| 5901 Green Valley Circle #320
Culver City, CA 90230-6953
The Westside Family Resource Center provides support, information, and access to services for families, professionals and teachers who have or work with children and/or young adults with a disability, chronic illness, or other special health care or learning needs. Their intent is to reach out to the community to provide support and information to families whose children do NOT qualify for Regional Center services, but do have IEPs. They will create opportunities for positive parent-professional collaboration, assist families in their understanding of special education services and access in the least restrictive environment, and will develop culturally sensitive and language-specific support groups throughout the community to connect and inform families. One of their main priorities will be to support non-English speaking families in underserved areas.
Other State Resources
California Hands & Voices
California Hands & Voices is dedicated to supporting families with children who are deaf or hard of hearing in a respectful and non-judgmental manner regarding language opportunities, communication tools or educational approaches. This is a parent-driven non-profit organization providing families with the resources, networks, and information to improve communication access and educational outcomes for their children; outreach activities, parent/professional collaboration; and advocacy efforts focused on enabling children who are deaf or hard of hearing to reach their highest potential.
Department of Developmental Services: Early Start Family Resource Centers
Families of infants and toddlers, birth to thirty-six months at risk of or with developmental delays and disabilities, can receive parent-to-parent support from Early Start Family Resource Centers and Networks.
"Hope, Dream, Achieve!"
Parent Links empowers parents of deaf or hard of hearing infants and toddlers by providing them with comprehensive information and awareness through mentoring, networking, and resources, and by honoring the family’s relationship with their child and their choices in language and communication opportunities. This program is for families with children identified as deaf or hard of hearing ages birth to 3 years old. Parent Links parent mentors have children who are deaf or hard of hearing. We are here to support, provide information on education and communication opportunities as well as connections to other families. Parent Links is a program of the CDE funded by a federal Maternal and Child Health Bureau grant.
Seeds of Partnership
Seeds of Partnership provides assistance on behalf of the California Department of Education, Special Education Division to support the direction, initiatives, and activities that are a part of the State Performance Plan (SPP) related to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) indicators. We aim to create or provide avenues and tools to increase improvement of partnerships and provide professional learning resources that will assist local educational agencies seeking to improve their family engagement practices and educational outcomes.