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Who We Are

Please note that as of December 2016, all NRCPDS Technical Assistance, Training, and Membership activities will move to Applied Self Direction. For more information, please visit our new website:

About the Center

The National Resource Center for Participant-Directed Services (NRCPDS) assists states, agencies and organizations in offering participant-directed services to people with disabilities. We are the only national resource that performs this function.

Many people with disabilities can benefit from participant-directed (also known as consumer-directed or self-directed) services. These services promote independence by helping participants decide for themselves what mix of personal-assistance supports and services best fits their needs.

At the NRCPDS, our mission is to infuse participant-directed options in all home and community-based services. We provide national leadership, technical assistance, training, education and research that improve the lives of people of all ages with disabilities.

The NRCPDS has a National Advisory Committee composed of leaders in our field.  View our NAC membership.

View the NRCPDS Overview Video

Our Goal: Lasting Change

The NRCPDS effects lasting change by:

  • Delivering sophisticated technical assistance to both Medicaid and non-Medicaid funded programs
  • Offering the best trainings, toolkits and educational opportunities for programs to build quality participant-directed options in every state
  • Coordinating our research and policy efforts to spark the expansion of quality participant-directed programs

Housed at the Boston College School of Social Work, the NRCPDS builds on lessons learned as the national program office for the Cash & Counseling grant program. Through this program, we have helped introduce participant-directed programs into 15 state Medicaid programs.

Our Values:

The NRCPDS values being an organization of integrity, passion, and commitment in all that we do. We are committed to advancing a world where all people with disabilities have choice and control over their lives, settings, and services. We will pursue evidence-based practices, and the development of new knowledge to remain adaptable and innovative in an always-changing long-term care environment. We seek to be influential leaders of participant direction through collaboration, teamwork, and partnerships. We will be guided by authentic involvement of participant voices in all aspects of our work.

Our Vision:

The vision of NRCPDS is to promote excellence in participant-directed home and community-based services for older persons and people with disabilities. We will expand our focus on evidence-based outcomes for participants and families. We will foster and support the implementation of high quality and accessible programs through unparalleled technical assistance, training, and research on participant direction, person-centered planning and home and community-based services.  

It is our vision to work closely with the disability and aging communities to understand and be responsive to the needs of individual participants in our provision of training, technical assistance, evaluation, and research supporting community living. We will seek ways to ensure the voices of participants and advocates inform our work and that those responsible for program implementation at the local, state and national level may also hear and be responsive to those voices.

It is our vision to be the leading resource for technical assistance, training, and publications for all organizations, associations, and program staff involved in participant direction and community living. Through our research and continuous communication with the field, we will be in tune with current practices in operationalizing participant direction. We will have a comprehensive and nuanced understanding of the impediments and obstacles in implementation and be able to work with organizations to help them reach solutions to those challenges.

  • Sponsors
    Many friends over the years have supported the NRCPDS and thus the development and growth of participant direction throughout the country.
  • Success Stories
    People with disabilities and their caregivers have experienced great success with participant-directed programs across the country. We've compiled a few of their stories.
  • Staff Profiles
    Our staff includes more than 20 professionals dedicated to the success of participant-directed programs nationwide.