The Partners in Policymaking Leadership Institute is a leadership, advocacy and self-advocacy training program for adults with disabilities and family members of persons with disabilities from across the state, sponsored by the Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities.
WHAT WILL THE SELECTED PARTNERS PARTICIPANTS DO?
Attend information sessions by local and national experts in the disability field on a variety of disability-related topics, including employment, building inclusive communities and classrooms, the state and federal legislative processes, supported and independent living, assistive technology, strategies for advocates and conducting effective meetings.
In January and February, Martin Pierce & Jeffery Babb made presentations to both our Tennessee and Georgia support groups sharing information about Special Needs Trusts, Conservatorships, Guardianships, Powers of Attorney and other related resources. Below are listed some of the resources which were referenced in those events as well as some additional Georgia-specific resources shared by Walker County Parent Mentor Michal Jones.
Did you ever wonder how parents of kids with extensive lists of diagnoses and therapies ever homeschool? Amanda Alexander, mom to Anna, homeschools successfully in spite of Anna’s major diagnoses of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, plus more than a dozen others. Anna has had many therapies- speech, ESOL, OT, ABA, DBT, CBT, EMDR, etc, but Amanda says “If I can do this, anyone can!” As she looks back today, I asked Amanda to share some wisdom from her journey with Anna…
On this day 3 years ago, I started homeschooling our oldest daughter for the first time. I set up a classroom at home that was similar to public school and enrolled her in gymnastics, homeschool PE at the YMCA, homeschool co-op at a local church, and she continued dance classes (ballet & tap) she was already enrolled in. It was TOO much for our daughter. The reason we withdrew her from public school was because it (set up, class placement, etc.) wasn’t working with her early childhood history of neglect, abuse, and institutionalization in Russia prior to adoption. Why did I think duplicating the public school at home would help? I meant well back then but I’ve learned a lot over time!!
A Special Touch Chapter is a faith-based friendship support group with regular meetings. Special Touch Chapters enrich the lives of people with disabilities through the exchange of helpful information, resources, mentorship, encouragement, and opportunities for fun and friendship.
Special Touch Getaways in multiple states, including Georgia.
Processing the emotions of a diagnosis of special needs of any kind looks different for different families. Here is one parent who sees 7 stages of processing grief.