Advocacy Organizations

Several community and advocacy groups also provide support and resources at regional and state levels. Below are some examples.

American Association of People with Disabilities3 person icons surrounded by arrows pointing in a circular direction around the icons.

The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) is a national disability-led and cross-disability organization. AAPD advocates for full civil rights for over 60 million Americans with disabilities, promoting equal opportunity, economic power, independent living, and political participation.

American Council of the Blind

The American Council of the Blind (ACB) is a national organization comprised of visually impaired, blind, and sighted individuals that advocates for the equality of people who are blind and low vision. ACB helps individuals to build community and connect with educational opportunities and resources. Their work is conducted through committees and task forces, and they have over 70 state and special interest affiliates.

Autistic Self Advocacy Network

The Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN) is a national grassroots nonprofit organization that is run both by and for autistic people. ASAN works to advance the principles of the disability rights movement with regard to autism through policy and legal advocacy, creating advocacy tools and educational resources, and providing leadership training for autistic self-advocates.


Easterseals and its affiliate organizations are nonprofits that provide services to ensure that people with disabilities and their families can participate fully and equally in society. Local and regional affiliates are located throughout the U.S.

National Alliance on Mental Illness

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is a grassroots nonprofit mental health organization that offers education, support, and advocacy, while also increasing public awareness. There are more than 600 NAMI Affiliates nationwide, including 49 State Organizations.

National Association of the Deaf

The National Association of the Deaf (NAD) is a nonprofit civil rights organization of, by, and for deaf and hard of hearing individuals that works to preserve, protect, and promote the civil, human, and linguistic rights of Deaf, DeafBlind, DeafDisabled, Hard of Hearing, and Late-Deafened people across the nation. NAD maintains a directory of State Agencies of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.

National Federation of the Blind

The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) is a nonprofit membership and advocacy organization that offers resources, services, and programs to people who are blind and low-vision. NFB has affiliates in every state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

The Arc

The Arc of the United States is a national nonprofit that promotes and protects the human rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and supports their full inclusion and participation in the community. The Arc’s network includes hundreds of state and local chapters in communities across the U.S.

United Spinal Association

The United Spinal Association is a nonprofit organization that empowers and advocates for people with spinal cord injuries and disorders, as well as all wheelchair users. Many regional, state, and city-based chapters exist to support the spinal cord injury and disease community through unique missions and programs.

Other Community-Based Organizations

Many community-based organizations provide funding assistance and other resources to help people with disabilities obtain devices and supports needed for independent living, such as glasses, hearing aids, and ramps. Examples include faith-based organizations and service clubs. In addition, community centers and libraries in both rural and urban areas often act as hubs for connecting with a variety of people at the local level who may need digital access and support.

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