2022 January News

Message from Executive Director

Members, Friends, and Collaborators of CIDA,

Happy New Year,  Members, Friends, and Collaborators of CIDA!

We hope that you had a joyful holiday season with your family and friends. As another variant of Covid, Omicron, is spreading rapidly in our communities, please continue to wear masks and get you and your family members vaccinated and get booster shots to stay healthy. 

Beginning of the year always brings so much excitement, but we are especially excited this year because a group of young men and a woman have launched a social cooperative venture through CIDA. These young individuals will have the opportunity to gain work experience through various internships and through their own business projects. 

In addition to the social co-op, we have numerous workshops and support groups planned to continue to empower and support our families. Whether it is children with IEP who need our support or adults with disabilities who need our assistance, CIDA will continue to convoy for them to thrive in our community in the new year. 


Young Seh Bae, Executive Director

Policy News


The kindergarten application is open, and you can apply online now with MySchools.nyc or by phone at 718-935-2009, or at a Family Welcome Center. The Application deadline is January 18, 2022. Apply Today.


New York State Education Department (NYSED) is canceling the January 2022 administration of the NYS High School Regents Examination Program in response to the ongoing impact of the COVID–19 pandemic. The next exams are scheduled for June, and no announcement has been made yet. The memorandum is available via here


The U.S. Department of Education Acting Director, Dr. David Cantrell, clarified that the IEP team must consider a number of special factors in developing, reviewing, or revising a child’s IEP, and that (in the case of a child with limited English proficiency) the IEP team must consider the language needs of the child as those needs relate to the child’s IEP Read the full letter here

What’s Up at CIDA

Social Cooperative Venture Launches.

CIDA kicked off the new year by hosting the first co-op member meeting on January 6.  The founding members include, David Lee (member), Donna Kim (member), Eugene Bae (member), Gabriel Kang (member), Joonsang Yoon (member), Sabastian Holynski (member), and Michael Jung (ally). These young people will join forces to launch its first project – a thrift pop-up shop and prepare for its first internship with Xtreme Home Care. Please stay tuned for more details on this exciting shopping experience in March. 

CIDA Fundraising Visionaries Dinner Raises More than $90K. 

CIDA board of directors hosted Visionaries Dinner in December. During the event, our most loyal supporters and patrons were recognized as CIDA Visionaries and welcomed new friends of CIDA. This invitation-only fundraising dinner raised more than $90K to support CIDA’s programs. Watch the recap of the event via HERE

Youth Program Intern, Lindsey Gillespie, joins CIDA. 

New intern, Lindsey Gillespie, joined CIDA to support our youth programs. Lindsey has a B.A. in Psychology, and experiences working with students with Autism. She will assist the youth manager and work with Step Forward students and co-op members. Lindsay’s goal is to become a clinical child psychologist specifically helping the lives of adolescents and their families. Learn more about her via Our Team page.


Due to the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic, all events are now online. Please check our event calendar for event details and registration information.

  • Understanding Kindergarten IEP with Advocate for Children of NY (Mandarin: Online) – January 12 at 7:00 pm: Parents of young children with IEP, turning 5. Register here
  • January Support Group Meeting (Online) – Jan 25 at 10 am: Parents and guardians of infant and school age children. Register here
  • NYS OPWDD Assessment (DDP2 and CAS) for Person Centered Support (Online) – Jan 27 at 7:00 pm: Parents/Guardians of persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities Register here
  • Understanding Kindergarten IEP with Advocate for Children of NY (Korean: Online) – February 3, 12:30 pm: Korean speaking parents of young children with IEP, turning 5. Register here.