An individual Microboard is an incorporated non-profit association designed to serve just one person.  The person who is supported is a core member of the Board of Directors.  Trusted friends and family members fill other positions on the Board of Directors and an extended circle of community members provides critical informal support.

With this support, control of essential resources stays in the hands of the individual person whose life is most directly affected and his or her closest allies.


Microboards and Microboard Association Design, Development, and Implementation 

by David & Faye Wetherow

In recent years there has been an increasing interest in the prospect of establishing ‘Microboards’ for developing personal support services for individuals with disabilities, for obtaining and managing direct, individualized funding, and for engaging members of the larger community in purposeful personal support networks. We created the very first Microboards in the Canadian province of Manitoba in 1984.  As we shared the story in conferences and personal correspondence, a handful of colleagues picked up the idea and began to apply the concept in other jurisdictions...


Click here to read the entire document.

Who to Invite to Join Your Microboard



  • You!  (The person with a disability!)  You should be a key officer on the Board of Directors, if you’d like to be.




  • Family members that care about and support your dreams


  • Friends and community members who are not paid to be part of your life...


Click here to read entire document.

Microboard CILA:  What is it?



Microboard CILA is one service option available to individuals in Illinois. For individuals and families who have an active Microboard, the Microboard can choose to become a licensed CILA (Community Integrated Living Arrangement) provider through DHS/BALC (Department of Human Services/Bureau of Accreditation, Licensure & Certification).  The Microboard then acts as an agency serving just one client – the individual. 

Click here to read the entire document.

Who Will Be There For My Daughter When I'm Gone

By Michele Westmaas

As my daughter gains in years, I gain in fears.  How can I manage to live a full life for myself and orchestrate a full, vibrant, inclusive life for her?  Can I meet her needs into adulthood when the supports of special education end? Can her one sibling carry on when her father and I are gone?  Before that, could he pick up the pieces even temporarily if we were drawn away by our own crisis (health, job loss, etc.)?  With all of our extended family living hours away, would the local friends who have become like family continue to be in her life if we were gone?


Click here to read the entire document.

FAQs -- Microboards and Cooperatives:  Be in Charge of Your Own Life!

I always thought I’d live in a CILA group home and go to the local day training program.  How could my life be different if I was part of a Microboard or Cooperative?

  • First, you would be in control of deciding what you need to reach your goals and how you’ll get what you need to be successful.  Have you heard of self-determination?  That’s what you get with Microboards and Cooperatives.

  • Second, Microboards and Cooperatives are not places.  The goal is to help you have a good life in your community by living, working, and playing with everyone else – not in places only for people with disabilities.

  • Third, Microboards and Cooperatives can be there for you for the rest of your life.  As you become more independent as an adult, the Microboard or Cooperative will be there for you so that you don’t have to rely only on your parents or siblings.


Click here to read the entire document.


Microboards in Action...

by Susan Barnhardt



I am so grateful for the introduction to Microboards and Cooperatives by the Managing the Art of Living Project.  [Note:  Managing the Art of Living was the name of IAMC when the project first began in IL.]  It has changed our family's life in just a few short months. In September of 2008, I heard about Microboards and Cooperatives for the first time from my PAS agent.  I contacted Wendy Partridge and soon attended an informational session as well as the Tennessee Advanced Microboard Training in Murfreesboro, Tenn.  There I heard what other persons with disabilities and their families were doing with employment, community living, recreation, networking, and just making their loved ones' lives of more quality and substance.  My thought was I can do that too!  But the Microboard gave us the motivation and determination to get this done.

Click here to read entire document.

Microboards in Action...
Heroes of the Game, Inc.

by Wendy Partridge



People with disabilities are often forced to live in places that are not of their choosing and or participate in "group programs" where they are likely to lose access to individual attention and choices.  People who do not have a good network of support are seldom empowered to advocate for simple every day choices many of us take for granted.  


Click here to read the entire document.