“The Community of Practice for Supporting Families of Individuals with Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities” is a national project from the National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services (NASDDDS), Human Services Research Institute (HSRI) and UMKC-Institute for Human Development, UCEDD.
The Supporting Families project involves six states (Washington State, CT, DC, TN, MO, OK) working to develop systems of support for families throughout the lifespan of their family member with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The Supporting Families project is operated under a five year grant awarded to NASDDDS by the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AIDD) beginning October 2012. The goal is to build capacity through a community of practice across and within States to create policies, practices and systems to better assist/support families that include a member with I/DD across the lifespan.
Supporting people with disabilities to live and fully participate in their local communities throughout their lives has emerged as a fundamental right and consideration in disability policy and practices. Because of the role that families continue to play in the lives of their family members, future policies and practices must reflect the family as part of the system of support.
“Supporting the family” is defined as a set of strategies targeting the family unit but that ultimately benefit the individual with I/DD. “Supporting the family” strategies are intended to assist family members who have a key role in the provision of support and guidance of their family member with I/DD to address the emotional, physical and material well-being of the entire family.
“Charting the LifeCourse” is a framework developed through the project to help individuals and families of all abilities and at any age or stage of life develop a vision for a good life, think about what they need to know and do, identify how to find or develop supports, and discover what it takes to live the lives they want to live. Informational materials/resources are available on the website listed below.
A FREE webinar series is available focused on innovative strategies to enhance the systems that support families of individuals with intellectual & developmental disabilities. http://supportstofamilies.org/resources/innovations/