2009 Building Futures Conference – October 26 & 27

OrPTI (Oregon Parent Training and Information Center) presents the 2009 Building Futures Conference this October.

Building Futures is for anyone who has an interest in supporting individuals with disabilities as they transition from school to life. This includes Secondary Educators, Post Secondary Educators, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors, Special Educators, therapists, counselors, service providers, job developers, and other rehabilitation specialists, and especially secondary students with disabilities and their families. Throughout the two-day event there will be presentations by regional and national experts on issues surrounding secondary transition and assistive technology. Check out the agenda here.

Scholarship information can be found here.

Washington County Resource Fair

Washington County Developmental Disabilities Services presents its annual Resource Fair. This is an opportunity to folks to lear more about services available and network with agencies serving Washington County. In 2007, over 50 exhibitors and 1,000 families and individuals attended the resource fair.

WHEN: Thursday, October 16th from 11am to 4pm

WHERE: Cedar Hills Crossing Mall – 3205 SW Cedar Hills Boulevard in Beaverton

Independence Northwest will be presenting along with MENTOR and SDRI.

RESOURCE: Looking For Resources? Respite Providers? Check Out Disability Compass

Disability Compass provides information on services, products, and special health care resources for people with disabilities, their families and their supporters.

There’s a Respite Provider search and a comprehensive listing of agencies and individuals serving the disability community. We have partnered with Disability Compass in the first year of our operations and highly recommend this resource.

RESOURCE: Connect with Others at Disaboom

Disaboom.com was founded by Dr. J. Glen House, a physician specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation who is also a quadriplegic. His firsthand knowledge of the challenges faced by individuals with disabilities and those whose lives they touch has driven the Disaboom.com mission: to create the first comprehensive, evolving source of information, insight, and personal engagement for the disability community.

Check it out here.

RESOURCE: Carespace – A Blog and an Online Caregiver Community

Carespace.com is the first major online community for caregivers. It’s a place for caregivers to meet, develop relationships, share stories and garner support for one another. They’re in their beta testing phase right now – you should join in and check it out.

While the community site is being tested and readied, you can check out their highly regarded blog here. Below, a snippet from a recent post.

The responses to my last post illustrate some of the many takes on the word “caregiver.” I’m grateful for all of them. Intense feelings about who we care for often supercede more general ideas around “caregiving.” So much so that any talk about grouping us together sometimes seems to detract from the individual experience.

At the same time, we know that parents of children with different illness or disabilities have a lot to share by way of information and support — even though when we do go looking for others, our search usually follows along the trail of a particular medical issue.

So I’ll be direct about the challenge of building the community for Carespace. I know that Carespace must be valuable and inviting to a mom and dad with an autistic child who want contact with others just like them. I also know that they may benefit from interaction with all sorts of moms and dads. (Not to mention that they may also be caring for an elderly relative.) But the reality today is that we haven’t established the idea of a global community of “caregivers.” It’s not yet ingrained in the overall dialog. To make this concept useful, we’ll have to discover the value of links between different “caring types.” This is something most of us will have to experience before we take it for granted.

Read more here.

BROKERAGE RESOURCE: Family Support Plans/Turning 18

Are you set to turn eighteen soon?

Independence Northwest is enrolling an unprecedented number of individuals turning eighteen with an existing Family Support Plan. When you come to Independence Northwest (or any brokerage for that matter) at the age of eighteen, your experience is a bit different than other customers. Because you have an existing plan, we have to “transfer” over those services (and the people who provide them) so we can provide you with continuity of care. We have created a guide to help you understand what’s happening, when and why. Check out our guide here.

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