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Helen Russette on the value of visitable homes

How visitable homes benefit you and your community

Helen Russette for the Missoulian, May 5, 2016

"A home is foundational to our well-being. For most, our home provides us with a sense of security, safety, and a place where we most often spend time with our loved ones. To me, this means having a roof over my head, safe running water, protection from weather extremities, and creating memories with my family and friends. We all define and describe what home means to us in different ways, but we share the common understanding that home is at the core of our daily lives. Purchasing or renting a home tends to be the single greatest expenditure Americans make. Our home can also play a role in shaping our health and well-being.

However, as we and our loved ones continue to live longer than our parents and grandparents before us, we can also expect to experience disability, such as mobility limitations that require assistive equipment like a wheelchair, walker, or cane. When homes include steps to the main entrance, have no bathroom on the first floor, and the door widths are too narrow to accommodate a wheelchair, our home, our very core, is disrupted and negative consequences can occur."

Continue reading visitable homes on the Missoulian.

Living Well with a Disability highlighted in CDC Weekly Updates

LivingWell with a Disability

RTC: Rural Living Well with a Disability program was featured in the recent CDC Disability and Health Weekly Updates.

“CDC’s Office of Minority Health and Health Equity, in collaboration with the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD) has published a Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) supplement looking at health interventions that are evidence-based and/or show promise in reducing health differences affecting certain population groups, including people with disabilities at the local and national levels. One of the highlighted interventions is Living Well with a Disability, a program developed by University of Montana in partnership with the national network of Centers for Independent Living (CILs) and with support from CDC’s Disability and Health Branch. This program helps people with disabilities learn skills to manage their health by teaching goal-setting and problem solving skills that help them remove barriers to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.”

Visit CDC Disability and Health Weekly Updates to read more of the article.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Strategies for Reducing Health Disparities

UM's Rural Institute Reaches Out to Families in Southwest Montana

Milestone Moments booklet cover“500 ‘Milestones’ booklets and 500 ‘Track Your Child’s Developmental Milestones’ brochures,” was the request from staff of Family Outreach Region IV, Inc., a private non-profit agency providing home-based education and support services to individuals throughout southwest Montana who have disabilities or developmental delays.

Family Outreach, Inc. staff teach families and friends how to teach skills to children and adults with special needs. Staff recognized immediately the benefit of the Learn the Signs. Act Early resources, Milestones Moments and Track Your Child’s Developmental Milestones. “We put a copy of the booklet and brochure in every family orientation packet,” says Jackie Mohler, a program manager. “When our staff make home visits, they use the booklets as a starting place for discussion with parents and families. The milestones are a way for us to talk about their child’s development in a non-threatening way,” she adds.

Continue reading RIIC reaching out to families

Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) Technical Assistance Center

Pre ETS TACA new resource is now available for transition services in the state of Montana. Through a contract with Montana Vocational Rehabilitation and Blind Services, the Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) Technical Assistance Center will provide technical assistance to schools, Tribes, and VRBS staff regarding Pre-ETS for high school students.
 
Students with disabilities are eligible for Pre-ETS if they receive special education services from the high school, have a Section 504 Plan from the high school, or have any disability recognized and not served through the high school. The student may receive Pre-ETS services beginning the academic year in which the student turns sixteen years of age and ending when the student is no longer enrolled in high school for reasons such as graduation, dropping out, or exiting high school for any reason.

Continue reading about Pre-ETS

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