Resources to Become Independent

Serving Benton, Henry, Johnson, Lafayette, Pettis and Saline County, Missouri.

Independent living means all disabled people having the same freedom, choice, dignity and control as other citizens at home, at work and in the community. Being independent is a vital skill for people who want to take more control of their lives and feel like they don’t need others to accomplish their goals. Being more independent will give you the freedom to do what you want without caring what others think and it will also lead you to find some original solutions to your problems. Plus, studies show that the more independent a person is, the happier he/she feels! This is because we feel a sense of relief and joy when we can take our lives into our own hands.

WILS provides Independent Living Skills Training as a service as well.  Visit the Independent Living Skills Training service page to learn more. 

Independent Living Resources

Help starts here. By dialing 211, you are connected to expert, caring help. Every call is completely confidential. There are more than 200 211 agencies across the United States, each with a team of compassionate, highly trained community specialists who are available to help you access the best local resources and services to address any need.

Phone: 211


The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects people with disabilities from discrimination. Disability rights are civil rights. From voting to parking, the ADA is a law that protects people with disabilities in many areas of public life. From answers to common questions to official legal documents, has everything you need to understand your rights and responsibilities under the ADA.

Phone: 800-514-0301

TTY: 1-833-610-1264


Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN)

The Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN) is a free resource that helps employers tap the benefits of disability diversity by educating public- and private-sector organizations on ways to build inclusive workplace cultures. EARN offers information and resources to empower individuals and organizations to become leaders in the employment and advancement of people with disabilities.



Job Accommodation Network (JAN)

The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) is the leading source of free, expert, and confidential guidance on job accommodations and disability employment issues. Serving customers across the United States and around the world for more than 35 years, JAN provides free one-on-one practical guidance and technical assistance on job accommodation solutions, Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and related legislation, and self-employment and entrepreneurship options for people with disabilities.

Phone: 800-526-7234

TTY: 877-781-9403



LIHEAP Energy Assistance

The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) may be able to help you pay your home energy bills through: Energy Assistance - A one-time payment for one fuel type for your heating or cooling costs from October-May. Energy Crisis Intervention Program (ECIP) - Helps pay your energy bill when you have a termination or disconnect notice.


Missouri Assistive Technology

The mission of Missouri Assistive Technology is to increase access to assistive technology for Missourians with all types of disabilities, of all ages.

Missouri Assistive Technology 1501 NW Jefferson St. Blue Springs, MO 64015

Phone: 1-816-655-6700



Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services

Help for Independent Living


Missouri Inclusive Housing Development Corporation

Provides information about safe, accessible, affordable housing in Missouri for those with developmental disabilities


Missouri Protection and Advocacy

This is a federally mandated system in the state of Missouri which provides protection of the rights of persons with disabilities through legally-based advocacy.


Missouri SHIP

Missouri SHIP, formerly known as CLAIM, provides unbiased Medicare counseling and education. Since 1993, Missouri SHIP has been a safe and trusted resource to help you understand Medicare and choose the right plan. MO SHIP has volunteer counselors and Community Partners throughout Missouri who provide local Medicare counseling in their communities. Volunteers receive extensive training to become certified Medicare counselors and regularly receive updates and training.

Hours: Monday - Friday, 9am - 4pm

Phone: 1-800-390-3330


Missouri Vocational Rehabilitation (VR)

Vocational Rehabilitation works with individuals who have a physical or mental impairment that may cause problems with them finding and keeping a job. VR specializes in employment and training services that can assist people in becoming employed. Once determined to be eligible for services individuals work with a counselor to develop a plan for their rehabilitation.



Missouri Centers for Independent Living (MOCIL) is a statewide association dedicated to protecting and advancing the civil rights of people with disabilities. There are 22 Centers in Missouri covering each of Missouri’s 114 counties. Centers are community-based, non-residential, not for profit organizations that are community controlled. Missouri Centers for Independent Living are the original state-certified and leading trusted resource for personal attendant services such as Consumer Directed Services. Through our regional centers in Missouri, we help people with disabilities remain in their own homes by assisting them in finding caregivers who can provide in-home personal care and support with household chores and daily meal preparation.


Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)

The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) is the only non-regulatory federal agency that promotes policies and coordinates with employers and all levels of government to increase workplace success for people with disabilities. ODEP's mission is to develop and influence policies and practices that increase the number and quality of employment opportunities for people with disabilities. To fulfill this mission, ODEP promotes the adoption and implementation of ODEP policy strategies and effective practices — meaning those that ODEP has developed and/or validated — that will impact the employment of people with disabilities.

Phone: 866-633-7365 or 202-693-7880



State of Missouri Disability Portal


Ticket to Work

Social Security's Ticket to Work (Ticket) Program supports career development for people ages 18 through 64 who receive Social Security disability benefits and want to work. The Ticket Program is free and voluntary. It helps people with disabilities move toward financial independence and connects them with the services and support they need to succeed in the workforce.

Hours: Monday - Friday, 8am - 7pm

Phone: 1-800-772-1213

TTY: 1-800-325-0778