Mon - Thurs: 9:00am - 5:00pm | Fri: 9:00am - 4:00pm
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Operation Welcome Home

A Program of The Arc of Illinois Family Transition Project | Made possible by a generous grant from The Aigner Foundation, Inc

Operation Welcome Home was created specifically to assist individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and their families who are transitioning into community-based living from state operated developmental centers (SODCs). We want to be of service to you by providing a place to come for helpful resources, a chance to meet with other families in the same situation, and the opportunity to receive a small tangible form of support.

Operation Welcome Home Toolkit

Listed below are resources you may find helpful before, during and after the transition process. We will continue to add to this list.

Key Resources

Operation Welcome Home Stipend

OWH offers a small stipend to individuals transitioning out of SODCs to use for something they choose to make the transition more comfortable and celebrate their journey into community living. Check out the Stipend Brochure and Application.

It’s a big step moving into a home that is all your own! Your donation will help individuals purchase luggage, clothing, room décor, and more. Or the individual may need funding for a membership in a local organization that help the person acclimate to a new neighborhood, such as a YMCA, local gym, activity group, class at a local college. Your donation will enhance and improve the quality of life for persons with intellectual/developmental disabilities. 

Operation Welcome Home Meetings

Meetings for anyone interested will take place at least quarterly and will feature speakers with professional expertise in areas of interest to individuals transitioning from SODCs and their families/guardians. Meetings are virtual in order to reach statewide. Please contact the Family Transition Project Director, Greg Walkington, if you are interested in registering for upcoming meetings at greg@thearcofil.org or 815.464.1832 x1019. 

  • September 19, 2022, 4:00-5:00pm: presented by Kim Shontz, Director of Illinois Crisis Prevention Network on Support Service Teams (SSTs)

Greg Walkington

Family Transition Project Director

Greg is an accomplished Operations Manager with 35+ years of experience in nonprofit leadership and program development, particularly as it relates to adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Greg’s experience ranges from direct, hands-on training in life skills enrichment programs to managing supports for over 400+ people with IDD across four divisions, four congregate work sites, and over 20 community-integrated living arrangements.

Importantly, Greg has a very unique relationship to his work that drives his passion for advocacy. As a father of an adult child who has physical and intellectual disabilities resulting in high support needs, Greg truly understands the value of maximizing the quality of life through community involvement for people he supports by providing them with the necessary support structures to lead dignified and fulfilling lives.