Reynolds School District in collaboration with Multnomah County School Districts presents the 2010 Multnomah County Transition Resource Fair.
Time – 10am – 6pm on April 9th, 2010
Place: Four Corners, Reynolds School District
14513 SE Stark Street, Portland, OR 97233
Independence Northwest will be sharing a table with several other metro area brokerages.
The fair will include resources on jobs, self-determination, health care, housing and training available to individuals living in Multnomah County and receiving (or preparing to receive) high school transition services.
For questions, please contact Shirley Burns (503.328.0428) or Shannon Selby (503.328.0423), the co-chairs of the 2010 Transition Resource Fair.
Disability Scoop is the first and only nationally focused online news organization serving the developmental disability community including autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, fragile X and intellectual disability, among others.
Five days each week Disability Scoop sifts through the clutter to provide a central, reliable source of news, information and resources. Plus, Disability Scoop is the only place to find original content and series like “Scoop Essentials” that take an in-depth look at what lies beyond the day’s headlines.
Leslie Clark and her husband have been trying to communicate with their autistic 7-year-old son, JW, for years, but until last month, the closest they got was rudimentary sign language.
He’s “a little bit of a mini-genius,” Clark says, but like many autistic children, JW doesn’t speak at all.
Desperate to communicate with him, she considered buying a specialized device like the ones at his elementary school in Lincoln, Neb. But the text-to-speech machines are huge, heavy and expensive; a few go for $8,000 to $10,000.
Then a teacher told her about a new application that a researcher had developed for, of all things, the iPhone and iPod Touch. Clark drove to the local Best Buy and picked up a Touch, then downloaded the “app” from iTunes.
Total cost: about $500.
A month later, JW goes everywhere with the slick touch-screen mp3 player strapped to his arm. It lets him touch icons that voice basic comments or questions, such as, “I want Grandma’s cookies” or “I’m angry — here’s why.” He uses his “talker” to communicate with everyone — including his service dog, Roscoe, who listens to voice commands through the tiny speakers.
It’s a largely untold story of Apple’s popular audio devices.
It is not known how many specialized apps are out there, but Apple touts a handful on iTunes, among them ones that help users do American Sign Language and others like Proloquo2Go, which helps JW speak.
The app also aids children and adults with Down syndrome, cerebral palsy and Lou Gehrig’s Disease, or ALS — even stroke patients who have lost the ability to speak, says its co-developer, Penn State doctoral student Samuel Sennott.
Using the iPhone and Touch allows developers to democratize a system that has relied on devices that were too expensive or difficult to customize, Sennott says. “I love people being able to get it at Best Buy,” he says. “That’s just a dream.”
He also says that for an autistic child, the ability to whip out an iPhone and talk to friends brings “this very hard-to-quantify cool factor.”
Sennott won’t give out sales figures for the $149.99 app but says they’re “extremely brisk.”
Ronald Leaf, director of Autism Partnership, a private California-based agency, says he prefers to help autistic children such as JW learn how to navigate their world without gadgets. “If we could get children to talk without using technology, that would be our preference,” he says.
Clark says the app has changed her son’s life.
“He’s actually communicating,” she says. “It’s nice to see what’s going on in his head.”
Among the revelations of the past month: She now knows JW’s favorite restaurant. “I get to spend at least every other day at the Chinese buffet.”
Last Friday, the metro area brokerages (Independence Northwest, Inclusion, Mentor Oregon and The Arc Brokerage Services) held the 2009 Resource Fair. The fair was an enormous success. We’re still tallying the attendee count, but it will likely surpass 400! Special thanks to all the vendors who came and presented their resources to metro area brokerage customers. You can check out their services below.
*NOTE: Not all vendors listed above provide services that can be paid for through Support Services funding. Some are natural resources and others are available through private pay. Check with your Personal Agent if you have questions.
Join this year’s Honorary Event Chair, Art Edwards of KOIN Local 6 and many of the KOIN crew as they help us celebrate our 5th Annual Walk ‘n’ Roll for UCP!
This year’s event features an 8k fun-run along with the traditional route of past years.
Adult entrance fee has been lowered to $15! There will be plenty of activities for the kids, Pizza Schmizza and a host of other sponsors are turning out to help us celebrate this milestone.
It will be held at the Eastside Esplanade on the east bank of the Willamette River. Our goal this year is to raise enough money to cover the critical but under-funded UCP Family Support Program. Therefore, our goal this year is to raise $80,000 – WE CAN DO IT, YOU CAN HELP!
Come and bring the family for an awesome summer day highlighting A Community for Everyone!
My name is Sally O’Neill. I am 17 years old. Like most girls my age, I love animals, going to the theatre with my friends on the weekend, and skiing in the winter. I dream of traveling after high school. I want to see places like Ireland, Italy, and India. Unfortunately, an accessible airplane ride is not an option for me.
I am writing this because I believe the airline industry should have to comply with the mandates of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. I have cerebral palsy. That means although I have a normal mind, I still have uncontrollable spastic limb movement. I cannot talk or hold my own body upright. I need my wheelchair to keep me in the right posture, and to restrain my arms and legs. The problem is the airline companies make all disabled people check their wheelchair with other baggage. I have visited my grandparents in Ohio and Florida many times. My parents have spent up to 7 hours trying to keep me seated between them. I don’t have the motor function to sit upright on my own. The airplane chairs are not big enough for a seat insert and do not support my upper body. When my shoulders are not in front of my hips, I go into an extension pattern. Due to my spastic limb movement, my parents have to physically restrain my arms and legs. I have strong tone, so this is not easy. None of us can eat, drink, read, or make ourselves comfortable in any other way. As I get older and bigger, each flight gets more difficult.
There are many other disabilities that have this same need for different reasons. I don’t think it makes sense that all other places open to the public are made accessible to every type of disabled person, especially transportation companies, but the airline industry is allowed to force the disabled into able-bodied standards or medical transport. I’ve heard of an airline removing a whole row of seats to accommodate a Sumo wrestler. If they can do that for a special athlete, why can’t they do it for a person with special needs? Have you ever wondered why you see so few people with cerebral palsy on airplanes? I think it’s because the airlines do so little to accommodate their needs to ensure their comfort. It’s discrimination. I looked up online how easy it is to remove any seat on the plane. I’m not asking for the bathrooms to be made accessible.
I am proposing that the first seat in the first row of the airplane be removable and tie downs be inserted. These tie downs are used in automobiles to keep the chair in place during crashes. They are as strong as anything on a plane.
I really believe with some small modifications airplane transportation can be made accessible to everyone. I hope you see the need and join me in this change.
Here is a proposed petition:
We petition the airline industry to better accommodate travelers who use wheelchairs. We propose that the first seat in the first row of the airplane be removable with the capability to have tie downs inserted when needed to accommodate a wheelchair, or that the airlines develop a solution to this urgent need.
If you’d like a copy of the Petition emailed to you, please send an email to the address listed below. We’d appreciate your help in collecting signatures. The important issue here is accessibility. There are a lot of people who cannot comfortably ride in an airplane, or who simply cannot ride at all. We also want to collect stories of your experiences riding in an airplane. Please call or write or send an email. The more stories, the better. And the more signatures, the better!
Susan Blanchard, UCP Family Support
Phone: 503-777-4166, toll-free within Oregon: 1-800-473-4581
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.
The mission of the site is to encourage new ways of thinking about developmental disabilities, in the belief that changes in our attitudes and actions can help create a society where all children and adults with developmental disabilities have opportunities to live the lives of their dreams, included in all areas of life.
As a parent, author, and trainer, Kathie challenges conventional wisdom and promotes new attitudes, new actions, and common sense in the disability arena. Since 1991, she’s presented hundreds of seminars at conferences and meetings across the United States and Canada. Her first book, Disability is Natural: Revolutionary Common Sense for Raising Successful Children with Disabilities, was published in 2001, and is now in its second edition. It’s a ground-breaking manual for change that’s used by parents, professionals, teachers, and several universities. Kathie launched this website in 2001, along with a variety of products that promote positive attitudes and perceptions about disability, including the one-of-a-kind “Disability is Natural” DVD. She’s written hundreds of articles, many of which are included in her second book, 101 Reproducible Articles for a New Disability Paradigm. She’s currently working on her next book on the inclusion of people with disabilities in community activities, like churches/synagogues, recreational activities, and other ordinary environments.
The Oregon Training Series on Direct Supports will be sponsoring an exceptional opportunity on January 30th, 2009. Acclaimed author, trainer and advocate John O’Brien will be making a rare Oregon appearance and we urge you to take advantage of this opportunity. To view the flier, click here.
John O’Brien has been in the forefront of thinking and creating precedent setting innovations that helped create full lives for people with disability labels the world over. In addition to developing many of the planning systems used internationally, training thousands of facilitators and human service workers, he is a writer with enormous insight and sensitivity. The training will bring to life John’s new book “Making A Difference, A Guidebook for Person Centered Direct Support.”
This isn’t OCDS’ only opportunity. Visit their website for a number of excellent trainings on disability over the coming months.
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.