On January 15, 2019, Missoula’s Downtown Master Plan held an Inclusive Interdisciplinary Walk Audit (I2Walk) as part of the Downtown Missoula Master Plan Public Design Workshop. Over the week, various workshop events gave community members an opportunity to share their vision and ideas for the future of downtown Missoula.
The I2Walk was co-sponsored by the University of Montana, the Rural Institute, and the Montana Disability & Health Program, as well as other local disability and community groups. Together, these groups help to build capacity within the state and local communities to support the inclusion of people with disabilities.
Dr. Meg Ann Traci, Research Associate Professor and RIIC employee, along with disability advocacy partners and stakeholders from around the state, collaborated to organize and lead the walk audit. To learn more about the development of the I2Walk, see: Walkable rural communities for all: Using inclusive, interdisciplinary walk audit workshops to achieve health equity, where you can find information about a poster presentation on the process presented at the APHA 2018 Annual Meeting & Expo.
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The Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities is partnering with the YETI (Youth Engagement Through Intervention) Program, which teaches communication skills to children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), to support the YETI STEP Program for parents and caregivers of children with ASD. YETI STEP (Youth Engagement Through Intervention—Support Through Education & Planning) offers resources to help families tailor behavioral strategies to their households.
Children with ASD can often benefit from targeted, specific intervention strategies that give them tools to communicate. However, parents and families may not have training and education to understand their children’s diagnoses, treatments, and interventions. To address this, the YETI STEP program helps families increase their knowledge and provides strategies to help their children improve behavior and increase communication. During the 90-minute sessions, families learn behavior management techniques to help their children increase language production. They then work one-on-one with a graduate student clinician to individualize the group lesson.
Read more about YETI