Welcome to the Fall 2017 edition of In Touch, the quarterly newsletter of Independence Now. Please use the in-page links below to naviagte to the various articles. For your convenience there is a "back to top" link after each article.

In Touch

Are You Seeking Financial Independence?

Nearly every day here in the Maryland Work Incentive Network office we speak with beneficiaries who are concerned about returning to work or starting a new job in fear they will for sure lose their entitlement to Social Security Disability benefits (SSDI), or Supplemental Security Income (SSI),? or Medicare or other sources of medical assistance.

It can be very scary for some SSDI or SSI beneficiaries to consider risking their?guaranteed monthly income or their medical coverage in exchange for accepting a job offer. While speaking with beneficiaries about financial independence, we can provide them with knowledge and choices they might never before have known they even have!? Our goal is to assure beneficiaries that if they want to seek employment, accept a job offer or an increase in pay, they have access to accurate and complete information that will allow them to benefit from all the current work incentives available in the Social Security Disability programs, as well as other federal, state and local programs.

We offer our services to individuals who are employed or engaged in self-employment, who are actively seeking employment, or just beginning to prepare for employment. So, if you are between the ages of 14 and retirement and you receive either SSDI or SSI, we welcome you to contact us at 888-838-1776.

We are here to provide accurate and current information and to help!

Cindy LeBon

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Independence Now Seeks Success Stories

Independence Now would like to celebrate your success and share your success stories in our newsletter. If you have achieved success with your independent living goals or has successfully started gainful employment, we would like to hear about it. Please forward a brief paragraph explaining your achievement with a picture of you to sminnick@innow.org.

If you have questions, please contact Shannon Minnick at 240-638-0070.

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Creative Cooking

Join us: Healthy cooking can be creative cooking! IN shares wonderful recipes that can connet health, family and friends together to experience the fun of food.

Thursday, October 19th 11:00 am ? 1:30 pm - Spicy Pumpkin Soup
Ah, fall, a perfect time for a spicy pumpkin soup! This soup comes together quickly, and has warm notes of ginger, curry, cumin, coriander, and black pepper.?Great flavor additions that enhance not detract from the pumpkin. What gives the soup its heat? Not chili this time, but some freshly minced?ginger. You will the love the zing ginger brings to the soup.

Dinner and a Movie
Thursday, November 16th 4:30 pm ? 7:30 pm - Documentary: Bottom Dollars

"How would you like to work for two weeks, and come out with a $6 check?" That's the reality for almost 250,000 Americans with disabilities who are paid below the minimum wage. This film exposes this exploitative system and offers solutions to end segregation and discrimination against workers with disabilities.

Mouthwatering Turkey Burger is on the menu: Finally, discover how to make a turkey burger that doesn't suck.... There are a few things in life that?no matter how many times I've seen ... that if you're going to eat a burger, you're in it for the flavor, not your health.

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Consumer Holiday Celebration

save the dateWednesday, December 14th - 11:00am ? 2:30pm ? Creative Cooking Class & Consumer Annual Holiday Event
December's class will be instructed by a nutritionist, who will focus on strategies to eating during and after the holidays. As part of the presentation, participants will make a healthy and affordable snack. The Consumer Holiday Celebration will follow with lunch, door prizes, recognitions and fun. Activities will end at 2:30PM. Arrange your transportation accordingly. For location, contact your IL Specialist the first week in December.

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Housing Seminar

Thursday, October 26th ? 1pm ? 3pm ?"Room for Rent" Mixer
In Montgomery & Prince George's Counties, the costs to rent an efficiency, 1 or 2 bedroom apartment are HIGH, and the waiting lists for subsidized rental units are LONG - years long sometimes!) While waiting for your name to FINALLY get to the top of a HCV waiting list, why not save LOADS of money by renting a single room.

Monday, November 20th ? 1pm ? 3pm ? Homeownership for Persons with Disabilities
Did you know that the State of Maryland has a special mortgage lending program JUST for people with disabilities? Find out how YOU can become a first time homeowner AND get down payment assistance even if you're sole source of income is SSDI or SSI. Guest Speaker: Representative from the Maryland Mortgage Program (MPP).

Thursday, December 21st ? 1pm ? 3pm ? Off-site Tour, HUD 811 Housing
Bring your accessibility checklists, questions about getting on the HUD 811 & Weinberg waiting lists and join IN's Housing Specialist, Ms. Abiola Heyliger on a holiday tour at an actual HUD-owned, subsidized property! Space is limited.

Contact Abiola Heyliger at aheyliger@innow.org to register or to request accommodation.

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Domestic Violence Awareness Seminar

Thursday, October 12th - 1pm - 3pm
In honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month Independence Now is having a forum on knowing signs, and how to stay safe.
Speakers to be announced

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Financial/Budgeting Seminar

Money Matters ? Wednesday, November 1st - 1pm ? 3pm
Money Matters: Saving your dollars and cents presented by Guidewell Financial Services. Learn how to save for a rainy day and necessities that are important to you.

Contact Rochelle Harrod at 240-898-2184 to register or request accommodations.

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Youth Holiday Extravaganza

For ages 10 to 21 - Sunday, December 10th from 1pm ? 5pm
Happy Holiday's! Please join us at MedStar NRH, 102 Irving Street NW, Washington, DC 20010 for our 8th Annual Youth Holiday Extravaganza for fun, food, live entertainment, gifts and good conversation. You Must R.S.V.P. by Dec 1st by contacting Shannon Minnick at 240-638- 0070 or sminnick@innow.org.

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