May 2024

Empowering people with disabilities to lead independent and inclusive lives in the community.

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A Message from the Executive Director

Dear Friends,

The Center for Independent Living Options (CILO) is interested in learning more about how we can customize our programs and services to best meet the needs of people with disabilities in our community. I am happy to share an opportunity for people with disabilities, their loved ones, and community professionals in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky to help us better understand access to services in the following areas for people with disabilities: health, wellness, housing, transportation, and finances.

To gather this vital information, CILO is conducting an online needs assessment. Individuals of all ages and disability types as well as disability service providers or other community professionals are welcome to complete this anonymous and confidential survey. There is no need to share your name unless you decide to add it to your response, and your answers will not be shared with anyone outside of CILO. Please complete the assessment by May 31, 2024.

We encourage you to share CILO’s needs assessment with anyone you feel fits the population we are trying to reach. You can access the CILO needs assessment here. Additionally, those who complete the needs assessment will be entered into a drawing to win a $25 gift card!

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact me! We appreciate your willingness to participate in the CILO needs assessment. Thank you for supporting our mission to empower people with disabilities to lead independent and inclusive lives in the community.

With appreciation,


Rob Festenstein

Executive Director


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2025-2027 State Plan for Independent Living

The Ohio Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) works with the Centers for Independent Living (CILs) to create the State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL). The SPIL is a three-year plan that gives the SILC and CILs goals to work on together to improve services and the community.

The SPIL draft will now be up for a 30-day comment period to ask for additional feedback. All feedback will be reviewed by the State Plan Committee. Any recommendations to make changes will be made to the SILC before voting to approve. 

State Plan for Independent Living - Public Comment (

WELCOME to our newest board member, Eva Schacht! Eva's personal and professional experiences will bring a fresh perspective to our board. Learn more about Eva here.

CILO is seeking individuals who are interested in serving on our Board of Directors. Volunteer board members serve as distinguished representatives of the organization and collectively contribute to our growth, sustainability, and impact within the community.  Board members bring a variety of skills and experiences to the table, and we encourage people with disabilities to consider this as an opportunity to offer informed insight and perspective into how we can further the mission and objectives of our organization. Key responsibilities include attendance at scheduled board meetings, and active engagement and contribution to the governance processes.

Download the board application here.     

NEW Resource: Community Life Guide Website

We are excited to share the DODD’s Community Life Guide website. The Community Life Guide features a variety of modules and resources, including employment, safety, finance, and health. If you are interested in learning more about these modules and exploring all of the fantastic resources on the website, click here.

CILO Partners with Cincinnati Pride 2024 to Increase Accessibility

CILO is partnering with Cincinnati Pride to make the 2024 parade and festival on Saturday, June 22nd more accessible for attendees with disabilities. The following are new accessibility measures that will be present this year. This is not a complete list, and many more accessibility updates will be shared in future announcements. 


·     Accessible Water Stations: Cincinnati Pride will have 60 access points for free drinking water at the festival. They are using Quench Buggy water refill stations, which are ADA compliant and multi-level. 

·  Drinking Straws: For anyone who needs one, drinking straws made of recycled plastic will be provided by Cincinnati Pride. 

·  Accessible Restrooms on the Parade Route: Cincinnati Pride is partnering with local businesses along the parade route to make their ADA accessible restrooms available to the public for use during the parade. 

·  Accessible Restrooms at the Festival: Cincinnati Pride is increasing the number of ADA accessible porta-potties this year. 


Do you have a question about accessibility or reasonable accommodations at Cincinnati Pride this year?

Visit the event website or contact us.

From our friends at Hamilton County DD Services:

Learn more here about how using your

Kroger Plus Card can support CILO!

Once you have signed up there is nothing more

to do other than use your Kroger Plus Card

at the checkout!

Help us increase the number of households participating by signing up today!

Jazzed About Art

benefiting Art Beyond Boundaries

This annual event continues to be one of the premiere fusions of

art featuring local visual and musical artists creatively collaborating for a cause! Tickets include music from Art Gore & The Jazz Knights with dinner catered by Ollie's Trolley, and valet parking. The fun includes a Bourbon Pull and a fabulous raffle.

Friday, November 8, 2024

6:00 - 10:00pm

Woodward Theater, 1404 Main Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202

Tickets $75 per person

Purchase tickets at Woodward Theater or Art Beyond Boundaries

Our office will be closed on Memorial Day, Monday, May 27th

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