All Belong Symposium
Parents Breakout Discussion Notes
- “Words are how we think but stories are how we link.”
- “Mom, I want to go in the same door as all my friends” – Micah
- Motivation and the right person can take you through the skill.
- Seeing disability is a differentiator not a deficiency.
- Micah is now at teaching assistants at Syracuse University.
- Ask for help with dignity and without apology.
- Think college.net
- ready for life program providing disability services to students on college campuses.
- Be their coach – be their advocate.
- Parents: protectors and guides shift from protecting to mentoring.
- Parents end up meeting to be the teachers. However caregivers need to be taken care of t00.
- How do we advocate? Who is responsible for educating advocating and building those communities? How do we get people to act now?
- Changing the Catholic culture to inclusion. There needs to be a forward movement. Next steps to include:
- building a website.
- Model from the Kensington church community.
- Parents want access to information from the parish so they can help their children through all ages of life.
- Have people with disabilities on the committee.
- Providing training to teachers.
- Justin dart – a pioneer in disability history. Knowing and understanding disability history aids and advocacy.
- Find people who know about the disability movement and ask them for help and guidance.
- Advocacy means being honest and building relationships. Be persistent and persevere. Find your mentors.
- circle of friends. Form relationships. When issues arise there is already a foundation to work from. Meet on a regular basis – rooted in fun.
- It’s okay to talk about tough stuff.
- We don’t use the nondisabled kids/peers enough. They oftentimes have the best ideas to help.
- We need to build a circle of friends to survive in a community.
- Learn the importance of being able to reach out.
- It’s rare that things happen on their own and it’s never too late to build a circle of friends.
- By asking for help were both giving and receiving at the same time.
- Independence is a myth – interdependence builds a community.
- How do we get people to join the circle? They don’t always have to be the same age. Focus on strengths and interests.
- Keep reaching out and always be assertive.
- Start your own groups. Invite the kids and parents. Make connections and build relationships.
- Knights of Columbus – faith in action driven.
- Kids with disabilities want to be independent – not always want to be protected by their parents.
- Dignity of risk-taking and making mistakes – it’s okay because we grow from our mistakes.
- Hard to find those organizations who want to help. Uncharted territory for many parents. Toledo website: archdiocese of Toledo – offer links leading to helpful resources.
- Reach out and ask who wants to join you – don’t go alone.
- Without these meetings we will never live in a totally inclusive world.
- It’s not enough to just be nice we must also figure out how to help those people feel like they belong.
- Let’s reclaim the word “disability”.
- “From puddles to pride”.
- “Intelligent lives film”.