It Takes a Village to Promote Independence
According to a recent press release issued by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) one in every four adults in the U.S. have a disability that “impacts major life activities.” Currently this percentage computes to 61 million Americans. Because disability becomes more common as individuals age, two out of five citizens will experience issues with mobility and/or cognition in the later years. Clearly, disability is part of the human experience.
Life with a disability is often full of complexity. Structural barriers, income limits, health issues, functional restrictions, lack of resources, and other obstacles must be addressed to achieve and maintain one’s independence. Rarely can all of the answers be found through a single source. Along with the individual, who has a disability, family members, friends, service providers, community partners, professionals in related fields, and even strangers all play roles in accomplishing the goal.
As the Dayle McIntosh Center began to plan for its 2018 annual fund raising event, discussion led to acknowledgement of the contributions that so many make toward the realization of the DMC mission – access and independence by and for people with disabilities. A single thought emerged: it takes a village to promote independence. Thus, the theme of the event was defined.
What a great opportunity to come together and celebrate the efforts of so many, who support folks with disabilities as they work to address obstacles and achieve success. From the shop owner, who makes modifications so that his facility is accessible to people with mobility devices, to the personal assistant, who provides aid with personal care and housekeeping activities; from the healthcare professional, who takes the time to link a patient with essential resources beyond treatment, to a parent, who advocates for disability rights; from a neighbor, who stops in to read the mail for a person, who has severe vision loss, to a travel trainer, who patiently teaches a young person with an intellectual disability to ride the bus; from an individual, who makes a donation to support the work of a disability-focused organization, to a foundation that funds the development of a transition program for youth with disabilities; from a friend, who spends hours on the internet looking for assistive technology that will improve the self-reliance of his friend, who is disabled, to a city council member, who fights for universal design in her city; from the volunteer, who buddies up with a person with a developmental disability for social and recreation activities, to a sign language interpreter, who facilitates communication between deaf and hearing people; the advancement of independence of persons with disabilities is a community endeavor.
Please join us on November 2nd at the Phoenix Club in Anaheim as we acknowledge the members of the community, who are part of the “village” that promotes independence. The evening will include a Thanksgiving feast, a silent and live auction, entertainment, and awards. To register for the event, go to: https://daylemc.ejoinme.org/eventlandingpage. The Dayle McIntosh Center is grateful for all of those, who play a part in helping people with disabilities realize their goals and dreams.
Written by, Paula Margeson, Executive Director, Dayle McIntosh Center