Anna-Margaret Goldman and Kaitlin Fertaly of the Rural Institute, and Amy Capolupo of Disability Services for Students at the University of Montana (UM), in partnership with the University of Colorado Boulder (CU), competed for and were awarded funding to host 19 higher education professionals from 5 Egyptian public universities.
The purpose of the 10-day day study tour is to strengthen the capacity of Egyptian university staff to administer newly established Disability Support Centers and ensure equal access to higher education for university students with disabilities. Participants, including officials from the Egyptian Ministry of Education, will travel to Missoula, MT, and Boulder, CO, for presentations and trainings in the fall.
Read more about the US-Egypt Study Tour
by Marty Blair, Executive Director of the Rural Institute
We are making progress, but we are still trying to figure it out decades later! Twenty years ago, in June 1999, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Olmstead v. LC that unjustified segregation of people with disabilities violated their rights guaranteed under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA, which was signed into law 9 years earlier on July 26, 1990, established the civil rights of people with disabilities and helped them be more included at work and in the community. The Olmstead decision sent a clear message that people with disabilities are entitled to work, live and participate in communities of their choice. The challenge for most people with disabilities is that the community-based services and supports they need to ensure participation are sometimes limited or non-existent. You can’t choose something that doesn’t exist.
Read more about Montanan's choice
Applications for the 2019 Community Investment Fund are now being accepted!
The Community Investment Fund is made available annually for innovative projects that help people with disabilities live, learn, work and play in their communities alongside people without disabilities. Any Montana organization, agency, non-profit group, or individual with a creative idea developed by/with people with disabilities to promote community inclusion is eligible to apply.
Please note: due to University contracting requirements, successful applicants will be required to have liability insurance and either Workers’ Compensation coverage or a Workers’ Compensation exemption certificate.
More Information and applications
AUCD Executive Director, Andy Imparato, shared information with RIIC staff and partners.
Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) board members traveled to Missoula, Montana for their annual ‘out in the field’ meeting in June. Rural Institute staff appreciated the opportunity to discuss rural issues with board members from around the country. Staff members took advantage of additional time to visit with national colleagues. Community partners had an opportunity to network with local, regional and national counterparts. It was a busy week!
Read more about AUCD visit
The 2018 Community Investment Fund ($2000) award will be shared by two recipients, Flathead High School in Kalispell and Quality Life Concepts in Great Falls.
Flathead High School will use the money to help purchase supplies for their Braves Coffee Company School-based Enterprise. This new business will feature students with and without disabilities working side-by-side to plan, market and operate the coffee company. Several community partners are collaborating with the high school to provide personnel training, discounted supplies, and mentoring.
Quality Life Concepts will apply their award toward expenses for their Community Recreation Co-ed Softball Team. The 40-person team includes clients with disabilities served by QLC, staff, and community members. All team members play, rotating throughout the game so that everyone has a turn at defense and at batting. They also have a team photographer who takes pictures for the team’s Facebook page.
Learn More about the Community Investment Fund
Building Inclusive Programs to Serve Adults with Disabilities from National Council on Aging on Vimeo.
Adults with disabilities in the U.S. face significant barriers to preventing ongoing health conditions and accessing health care services. One way to address these health disparities is through evidence-based programs, like Living Well with a Disability (LWD). LWD is a peer-led program that was created specifically for adults with disabilities with input from the national network of centers for independent living. Listen to this webinar to learn more about the development, implementation, and successes of LWD. Helpful resources and strategies for ensuring evidence-based programs are accessible for all are featured.
Map 2. Disability rate among males in America by county. This map of the United States depicts disability rates among males by county. Disability tend to be more predominant in the Appalachia region, especially along the borders of Kentucky, West Virginia, and Virginia. There are also some concentrated pockets of higher rates in southern Missouri, western Oklahoma, Arkansas, parts of New Mexico, southern Nevada, and Puerto Rico. Disability rates among males are lowest in southern California, regions of the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains.
Map of metropolitan, micropolitan, and noncore counties across America. This map of the United States depicts urban and rural counties across America using the Office of Management and Budget classifications. In general, metropolitan counties are more prevalent along both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, and throughout the eastern and Midwestern states. Micropolitan and noncore counties are more common in the northeast, parts of northern Midwest, the Great Plains, and Rocky Mountains.
Wheels Across Montana is a grant-funded health promotion project, made possible by the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, to promote physical activity, physical and mental health and quality of life for Montanans living with a variety of disabilities.
Through the selection, purchase and distribution of adaptive bikes and trikes in 4 key areas of Montana, and working with select community partners to assure creative outreach and all-inclusive recreational programs, we will increase physical activity and social interaction. Program sites will include Fort Peck Tribes, Billings, Dillon and Missoula. In each region, one medical center/provider is partnered with a recreation program provider to assure that people with disabilities are aware of the program and able to access the recreational equipment that is best suited for their needs.
"Happiness in life and being in the now..."
By Lauren Beyer, Rural Institute Project Assistant
Molly Black was featured as an Emerging Leader in 2010. In the years since, certain aspects of her life have remained the same, but she has experienced changes as well. In fact, these days Molly is really "branching out." She is making strides to broaden her horizons in several areas of her life, including diet and beliefs.
Read Molly's story to learn what she's doing now and her plans for the future.
The Americans with Disabilities Act turned 25 on July 26th. Communities, organizations and individuals across the country have been celebrating this important milestone in the months and weeks leading up to the anniversary. But while the ADA has made great strides toward full inclusion of people with disabilities in all areas of life, there is still much work to be done.
For example, the “built environment” is one easy way to see how far we’ve come since passage of the ADA. Take a look at your own community and the places you frequent. Where are the accessible entrances? Are they on the front of the building or tucked around back? New buildings, such as the one pictured at right, often feature universally accessible front entrances that allow everyone access through the main entrance. This is one example of full inclusion in the built environment.
Continue reading article on RTC: Rural website: http://rtc.ruralinstitute.umt.edu/ada-25-reflecting-on-inclusion/
Centers for Independent Living (CILs) are non-profit, community-based organizations that provide peer support, information and referral services, advocacy, independent living skills training, and transition youth services for people with disabilities. CILs are developed and operated by people with disabilities and provide services in accordance with the tenets of Independent Living philosophy that emphasize consumer choice and control. CIL services are flexible and responsive to the changing needs of their consumers, serving individuals across the lifespan, across disability and across gender and race. Centers for Independent Living across the country offer activities, classes and opportunities to develop lasting, supportive friendships that help reduce feelings of isolation and encourage participation in the broader community.
Continue reading article on RTC: Rural website: http://rtc.ruralinstitute.umt.edu/centers-for-independent-living-in-your-community/
The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) was signed into law on July 22, 2014, and is an amendment to the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. A large federal legislative bill that encompasses The Rehabilitation Act of 1973, WIOA authorizes the formula grant programs for vocational rehabilitation, supported employment, client assistance, and Independent Living.
Continue reading about the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) at http://rtc.ruralinstitute.umt.edu/wioa-anniversary-july-2015/
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) turns 25 on July 26th. The ADA, a civil rights law passed in 1990, “prohibits discrimination in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public” (ADA National Network). But, while the law is nearly 25 years old, there is still much work to be done to ensure people with disabilities are able to fully access all areas of community life.
In order to keep the Americans with Disabilities Act at the forefront of public policy and to emphasize its importance not only to people with disabilities but to everyone interested in civil rights, celebrations are happening all across the country with the ADA Legacy Bus Tour.
Continue reading ADA 25th Anniversary Celebration at http://rtc.ruralinstitute.umt.edu/americans-with-disabilities-act-turns-25-on-july-26th
The MonTECH Equipment Recycling Program (MERP) is a Reuse – Recycling program dedicated to improving the health and accessibility of each person’s home/work/play environments by facilitating the passing of durable medical equipment from those people who no longer need their equipment to those people most in need. The program works with the Pass It On Center at a national level to foster improvements in assistive technology (AT) reuse.
The goal is to create and nurture a statewide network of small loan closets that will help Montanans access the equipment they need when they need it and close to their home. Many of these loan closets exist already, but MERP is working to create a network to “get the word out” from the MonTECH website.
Although inventory varies over time, the most frequently recycled previously-used equipment has included:
- Wheelchairs and some scooters
- Bath chairs and commode seats/ toilet riser seats
- Variety of older pediatric equipment such as gait trainers, Tumbleforms, etc.
- Adult adjustable canes, crutches, front-wheeled walkers
Continue reading about MERP