Joan Cassel Memorial Library

Located at Support for Families, 1663 Mission St., Suite 700

Open to the public
Monday- Friday, 9:30-4:30 pm


In 1995, Joan Cassel purchased a dozen books from Hod Gray with the Special Needs Project, which marks the beginning of our library. Support for Families maintains an extensive collection of resources for families and professionals comprised of multi-lingual books, periodicals, reference materials and media related to children with disabilities and special health care needs. The library is open to the families and professionals with free borrowing privileges.


Toy Lending Library

Our toy collection is dedicated to the memory of Terri Brown, of San Lorenzo, CA. Terri started a toy library for Joshua, her grandson, who was ill, and opened it in her garage for neighboring children and children with special needs. After her death, her toy library was donated to Support for Families for the use of our families.

Staff and volunteers choose toys that support inclusion, are sensory-friendly, and are organized by developmental stage in order to help families choose appropriate toys for their child.  The library helps families explore the importance of play with their children while also offering a chance to try out toys that are designed to help with specific skills before purchasing them.

The toys on our library shelves are just a small representative sample of what we have to offer!  Looking for more toys like the ones displayed?  Ask a Support for Families staff member to explore our full collection!

iPad Lending Program

iPads are being used more and more in education every day.  There are apps that can assist students with disabilities in academic areas such as early literacy, reading, writing, math, organization, note taking, and more.  We have apps for students from preschool age through high school.  A consultation appointment is required in order to borrow any equipment, and ongoing support is provided as needed.  Please give us a call at 415-920-5040 or email info@supportforfamilies.org for more information!

Jump to our Assistive Technology (AT) page!

Early Literacy Kits

Explore early literacy with your child through Support for Families’ Early Literacy Kits!

Support for Families has Early Literacy Kits for ages 0-18 months, 18-36 months and 3-5 years and they are available in English/Spanish and English/Chinese.

Each Literacy Kit features a variety of tools to involve parents/guardians and their children in the promotion of reading and early literacy, including:

  • Books

  • Toys

  • Activities

  • Early Literacy Tip Sheets

  • Library Resources


To check out one of our Early Literacy Kits, stop by our library at the Family Resource Center and explore the Early Literacy Kit cabinet!

Check-Out Info

Library Specifications


Our Library contains over 3500 books and audio-visual materials, including:

  • Over 200 toys providing opportunities for children with disabilities to experiment with a variety of developmentally appropriate toys

  • Spanish and Chinese language collection

  • National, state, and local disability related periodicals

  • Magazines relating to various disabilities

  • A large collection of pamphlets, flyers, info packets, etc. from local agencies and organizations that provide services, programs, and special events for our families



  • Searchable online Library Catalog of our books, pamphlets and audiovisual materials.

  • Librarian reference assistance by telephone, email, fax and in-person
    (M-Th 9:30-2:30pm)

  • Self check-out and check-in of library materials

  • Easy access to in-library reference books, newsletters, magazines & catalogs

  • Internet access to Support for Families' online resources

  • Join the Support for Families Email List for current and archived information about children and youth with disabilities.

  • Referrals to public, non-profit, or special disability libraries in the San Francisco Bay Area


  • Public computer with internet access and Microsoft Office software

  • Reading areas

  • Free printing and photocopying

  • User-friendly browseable book stacks