Upcoming Events

VFN’s upcoming events include webinars, workshops, Sibshops, and support groups. If you have a suggestion for a future event, please contact Janice Sabett. 


Determining Eligibility for Special Education: An In-depth Look at Adverse Effect Wednesday, November 29 from 10 am – 11 am. Register NowAdverse effect is one of three criteria (also called “gates”) used to determine a child’s eligibility for special education services. Join Ernie Wheeler, Special Education Program Coordinator from the Vermont Agency of Education for an in-depth look at this criteria: What is adverse effect? What measures can be used to answer the adverse effect question? How do teams document adverse effect? A time to address audience questions will follow, as time allows.

Vermont ABLE Savings Program Celebrates First Anniversary Wednesday, January 17 from 10 am – 11 am. Register Now  The Vermont ABLE Savings Program is celebrating its first anniversary! Over 100 Vermonters have begun taking advantage of this new opportunity for people with disabilities and their family members to save for future disability-related needs. Sponsored by Vermont State Treasurer Beth Pearce, this tax-advantaged program shields savings from the low asset limits of federal benefits like social security and Medicaid. The Vermont Developmental Disabilities Council Executive Director Kirsten Murphy has been an active participant in Vermont’s ABLE Task Force. She will explain how VT-ABLE works and how it can play a part in supporting greater independence and a more financially secure future for someone with a disability. Presenter: Kirsten Murphy, VDDC Executive Director

* Cancelled and will be rescheduled * Alternatives to Guardianship: There are real options! Wednesday, May 31 from 10 – 11 am. Have you been working hard to support your son or daughter to be independent but are worried about keeping them safe? Join the Disability Law Project and Green Mountain Self-Advocates to learn about effective strategies to support someone to make health care and financial decisions while maximizing self-determination. Also learn about the legal alternatives to private guardianship in Vermont for adults. Presenters: Laura A. Gans, Staff Attorney, Disability Law Project, Karen Topper, GMSA Administrative Director, and a self-advocate (TBD)


If you would like to host a workshop, please email Janice Sabett

No workshops are scheduled at this time.


Sibshops are fun events for the siblings of children with special needs. Take a look at our Sibshop Frequently Asked Questions and Answers or watch this video to learn more. Sibshops meet in the Burlington area. For information, questions, or to RSVP, please contact Jamie Rainville or call (802) 876-5315 or 1-800-800-4005, x 243.

Sibshop Schedule for Children and Youth Ages 6+

Each Sibshop includes an activity, conversation, and sharing a meal. Locations vary depending on the activity. Participants should dress comfortably and be ready for action! $10 donation per session. As always, scholarships are available! Activities are subject to change. 

Complete a Sibshop Registration form and save money! Fax (802-876-6291) or mail to: Vermont Family Network, 600 Blair Park Rd., Suite 240, Williston, VT 05495 Attn: Jamie Rainville

All activities are on Saturday.

September 16 – Hike Mt. Philo February 10 – Valentine’s Party (Baird Gym)
October 14 – Fall Festival (Baird Gym) March 10 – Rock Climbing (Metrorock)
Nov 18 – Puppets in Education (VFN Office) April 14 – Music Festival (Baird Gym)
December 9 – Paint & Soda (One Arts Place) May 19 – Picnic & Outdoor Games (Oakledge)
January 20 – Clowning Around (Baird Gym) June 2 – Bowling Party (Spare Time)

Support Groups

Here is a list of some parent-run support groups.

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