Department of Developmental Services – Merrimack Valley Area Office


  • Overview of Organization and Services:
    The Department of Developmental Services provides supports for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities including Autism Spectrum Disorder to enhance opportunities to become fully engaged members of their community.

    The Department’s mission is to create, in partnership with others, innovative and genuine opportunities for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities to participate fully in their communities and meaningfully engage as valued members.

    DDS works with adults to connect them with an array of employment and day program supports, community living and other residential aid, and family support.

    DDS works with children to provide family support and supplement educational services through specialized programs.

    Services are individualized and planned using a person-centered approach.

    The Department serves over 32,000 adults and an additional 9,000 children across the state to assist in transitions from school to adult life and to provide support for individuals through an individualized, person-centered approach.

    Services are coordinated through 23 Area Offices and 4 Regional Offices across the state. Services are provided through contracts with non-profit agencies and through two self-directed service options. The Department monitors services through a variety of quality management systems.


  • Demographics Served:
    Adults: 19+, Children: 12 and under, Families, Youth: 13-18
  • City/Towns Served:
    Amesbury, Newbury (incl. Byfield), Newburyport, Rowley, Salisbury, West Newbury
  • Types of Services Provided:
    Behavioral Health, Disabled Adults and/or Children, Education and Job Training, GED, Computer, Job Readiness Skills, Resume and Job Search, Special Education, Transportation