Living Independence for Everyone, Inc. started in the home of two ladies with disabilities. They had a vision of equal rights, equal opportunities and integration into the community for all people with disabilities. From it’s beginnings in Chatham County in 1986, Living Independence for Everyone has expanded. LIFE provides aid to eleven (11) counties in southeast Georgia.
Through the advocacy efforts of the founders, LIFE was instrumental in bringing about accessible transportation. They also helped get feasible and accessible housing and a home modification program. This was for all residents with disabilities. Thus, the staff works to provide equivalent services to the more rural areas.
The foundation of Independent Living is the peer relationship. In other words, people with disabilities assisting other people with disabilities. As role models, mentors and counselors, peers have personal experience of focusing on what one can do, rather than what one cannot do. Center staff encourage people to use their skills, talents and abilities to attend school. They can also work, volunteer and fulfill civic duties such as voting or just being a good neighbor.
LIFE is a part of Georgia’s Independent Living Network (GILN) which is comprised of the Statewide Independent Living Council. Likewise, they have nine Centers for Independent Living. Above all, the Council’s role is to promote policies and practices that enable independent Living for all Georgians with disabilities. The Centers for Independent Living assist people with all types of disabilities to set and achieve personal goals toward independence. In addition, each of these organizations is governed and staffed by people with disabilities.
Access 2 Independence
3127 Tower Road Suite B-2 Columbus, GA 31909
Serves the following county in West Central Georgia: Muskogee
BAIN (Bainbridge Advocacy Individual Network)
316 West Shotwell Street P. O. Box 1674 Bainbridge, GA 39818
Serves the following counties in Southwest Georgia: Baker, Calhoun, Clay, Decatur, Early, Grady, Miller, Mitchell, Randolph, Seminole, and Thomas.
170 College Street Macon, GA 31201
Toll Free TTY/Voice: 800-743-2117
Serves the following counties in Central Georgia: Baldwin, Bibb, Crawford, Houston, Jasper, Jones, Monroe, Peach, Pulaski, Putnam, Twiggs and Wilkinson.
Disability Resource Center
470-A Woods Mill Drive Gainesville, GA 30501
Serves the following counties in North Georgia: Banks, Dawson, Forsyth, Franklin, Habersham, Hall, Hart, Lumpkin, Rabun, Stephens, Towns, Union, and White
1901 Montreal Rd Suite 102 Tucker, GA 30084
Voice (404) 687-8890
TTY (404) 687-9175
Toll Free Voice/TTY (800)239-2507
Serves the following counties in Metro Atlanta: Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, Newton, and Rockdale
Northwest Georgia Center for Independent Living
242 North 5th Avenue Rome, GA 30165
Toll Free: 866-888-7845
Serves the following counties in Northwest Georgia: Bartow, Catoosa, Chattooga, Dade, Fannin, Floyd, Gilmer, Gordon, Haralson, Murray, Paulding, Pickens, Polk, Walker, and Whitfield
LIFE (Living Independence for Everyone, Inc.)
4811 Waters Avenue Savannah, GA 31404
Serves the following counties in Southeast Georgia: Bryan, Bulloch, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Evans, Glynn, Liberty, McIntosh, Tattnall and Toombs
145 Barrington Drive Athens, GA 30605
Toll Free: 877-549-1020
Serves the following counties in Northeast Georgia: Barrow, Clarke, Elbert, Greene, Jackson, Madison, Morgan, Oconee, Oglethorpe, Walton
Walton Options for Independent Living
P. O. Box 519 Augusta, GA 30903-5019
Toll Free: 877-821-8400
Serves the following counties in East Georgia: Burke, Columbia, Emanuel, Jefferson, Jenkins, Johnson, Lincoln, Richmond, Screven, and Washington.
In addition, LIFE is also a member of the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) – a membership organization that advances the Independent Living philosophy and advocates for the human rights of, and services for, people with disabilities, with the end goal of furthering their full integration and participation in society.