Achieva | The Arc of Greater Pittsburgh | Advocacy

Information, Support and Advocacy

Navigating through educational, medical, government, and adult service systems can be difficult and overwhelming when a family member has a disability. Achieva Advocacy can help.

Seated on the steps of the capitol, the Skiffen Family Hold a sign that says #PAABLEFor more than 70 years, Achieva's disability advocates have been working with families and self-advocates to ensure that:

  • Families have access to information, support, and advocacy

  • People with disabilities have access to quality education and community services

  • Policymakers and legislators are informed about disability issues

  • Ideas of self-determination, inclusion, and person-centered planning are the foundation of individual's supports

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Our Initiatives

Empowered Voices

Achieva’s Empowered Voices Leadership Group is comprised of self-advocates from around the Pittsburgh area. 

Planning for College

The Planning for College with Achieva Initiative provides information, resources and technical assistance to college-bound students and families.

Disability Healthcare Initiative

Providing statewide leadership on improving access to health care for disabilities through education, public policy and advocacy.

In The News

A Crash Course on Tansition Planning

A Crash Course on Tansition Planning

Do you have a child with an individualized educational plan (IEP)? Are they going through secondary transition planning or do they need to? Do you need assistance on understanding the process? Being a part of this project will provide you with all the information in one place!

Western Pa. school staffing shortages leave special education students struggling, families say

Western Pa. school staffing shortages leave special education students struggling, families say

Before bedtime last school year, Melissa Skiffen sat with her son and showed him a picture of the new teacher assistant in his classroom to make him more comfortable with the person who would help him throughout the next day.

Achieva's Own Nancy Murray Selected for Shapiro-Davis Transition Role

Achieva's Own Nancy Murray Selected for Shapiro-Davis Transition Role

Nancy Murray, President of The Arc of Greater Pittsburgh and a Senior Vice President of Achieva, has been selected by the transition team for Governor-Elect Josh Shapiro and Lieutenant Governor-Elect Austin Davis to serve as a member of the Health and Human Services.


I greatly thank you for your support and help this year!

I still think about how you made sure that we read Timmy’s strengths to him from his IEP and the look on his face, beaming with pride! Have a great summer!
The advocates were able to give me strategies to work with the school district. They were even able to help me figure out what to ask for in the IEP meeting. And they were able to get the school district to be more cooperative than they had been with just me.
My Achieva advocate was able to guide me step by step as to everything I needed to do to get help for my daughter. Before stopping to see her I had no idea to where to even begin. I am soo grateful for her knowledge and graceful personality!