Left side: Brian Szuda, Executive Director, Lesley Gonigam, Associate Director, and Deb Cools, Office Manager.
Cynthia Panizzi, Independent Living Specialist, Liz Bedford, Community Reintegration Coordinator, Ashley Purpura, Independent Living Specialist II, & Laken Wilke, Mobile Meals Coordinator.
Welcome to IVCIL!
The Illinois Valley Center for Independent Living (IVCIL) is a nonprofit service and advocacy organization that assists persons with disabilities in opening doors to their independence. IVCIL provides services for persons with disabilities, their families, and the community in Bureau, LaSalle, Marshall, Putnam, and Stark counties.
What is Independent Living?
- Having the opportunity to make choices.
- Assuming responsibility for your decisions.
- Making the most of your life with the appropriate supports.
- Taking control of your life.
The IVCIL is here to provide these supports, services and specific programs to bridge the gap from dependence to independence.
What We Have Accomplished for Our Consumers
- Moved 45 people out of nursing homes into the community since 2006.
- Helped 32 people obtain services at home and avoid being placed in a nursing home over the past two years.
- Secured sign language interpreters for 48 appointments or meetings in the past 6 months.
- Advocated in 68 special education meetings at schools, to help ensure students with special needs get an appropriate education, in the last year.
- Supplied free loans of equipment to 80 area residents in need during the past year.
"Laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act (IDEA) happened because hundreds of thousands of persons with disabilities all over the country realized that we were being discriminated against and there were no laws to protect us. Each person worked in her or his own way to make these laws happen, and the combined effort brought success. Now we have the responsibility to work in our own ways to make these laws work for us or for our loved ones."
Former Executive Director for the Illinois Network of Centers for Independent Living