How to start a group home for Autism in California

September 6th, 2007

Q:I have a profoundly disabled brother, and I would really like to start a group home specifically for low functioning Adults with Autism in California.


In California, I would suggest first calling your local Regional Center. The Regional Centers vendor most community programs for people with developmental disabilities, and that is usually how group homes for people with autism and other developmental disabilities are funded in CA. The Regional Center can tell you what steps you need to become a vendored program. There are some mandatory training requirements.

You will also need to be licensed by Community Care Licensing. They can give you all the info on what your group home needs in terms of space, furnishings, and equipment, what the regulations are in terms of staffing, provision of care, etc.

It’s hard work – I know, because I was a licensed residential services provider in CA for 15 years! It takes someone who is really willing to work hard, and who can deal with different kinds of stress. But it sounds as if you are motivated to do this because you want good quality services for your brother and for other people with autism. I also started my group home because I have a sibling with a developmental disability. So I wish you the best!

In my local area, there is one group home that I know of which is specifically for people who have autism. There is a tremendous need for this type of program. So start with your local Regional Center office and go from there.

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