A newsletter for chapters that connects, engages and informs.
MARCH 18, 2013
Letter from the CEO
Peter V. Berns
CEO of The Arc
Business Enterprises in Search of National Accounts
In our 2011 Chapter Profile Survey, 34% of chapters of The Arc reported that they operate business enterprises that employ people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Of these, 84% report that they have an integrated workforce, with employees without disabilities and those with I/DD performing similar tasks. More than two-thirds reported that work is performed in community based settings at private companies and in government agencies.
Recently, I was reviewing the website of eDocNY, a document management business operated by Westchester Arc. Check it out at www.edocny.com. eDocNY is providing document scanning, microfilming, box storage and document destruction for a variety of government and corporate clients in Westchester County NY; and they do so with an integrated workforce.
That led me to think, do we have other chapters that are operating similar document management businesses so that we could build a network and seek out national accounts. Let me know if your chapter has a document management business. I would also like to learn about other business enterprises that are being operated by chapters of The Arc that could be networked together to pursue national accounts. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.
Resources & Opportunities
Exciting New Video Raises Awareness in an Unusual Setting
The Arc is proud to have had award-winning film producer and director Heidi Reinberg capture the thrill of professional car racing through the eyes of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Check out this footage from the Sonoma Speedway at a Pirelli World Challenge Series race in 2012. The video chronicles The Arc Audi Racing Program, a partnership between The Arc and Istook’s Motorsports giving individuals with I/DD a unique race day experience and raising awareness of employment opportunities. Team owner Don Istook employs an individual with I/DD with his pit crew. This is an opportunity for your chapter to highlight the work The Arc is doing to raise awareness about employment issues and exemplifies the kind of creative, forward-thinking initiatives for which The Arc is known. Please share this video widely via your social media channels and in your community and use it as a tool to emphasize the concepts of meaningful employment for people with I/DD, inclusion and full participation. The Arc Audi Racing Program continues in 2013 at nine races involving eight chapters of The Arc plus Inclusion International in Canada. Find out more about the program and link to the video on our Website or YouTube channel.
Advocacy Matters! Award Nominations Open The Arc is seeking nominations for its 2013 Advocacy Matters! Award. This award honors an advocate, or group of advocates, who achieved a significant advocacy victory in the past year that improved life for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and/or their families. The award recognizes advocacy that promotes and protects the civil and human rights of people with disabilities or that increases resources, services and supports that promote their full inclusion and participation in community life. To read about last year’s award recipient visit The Arc’s blog.
Early Registration Deals on New Peer Learning Community Still Available
Extend your St. Patrick’s Day celebration and save some green! Join The Arc’s upcoming Peer Learning Community on strengthening self-advocacy in our chapter network. How do chapters across The Arc’s network support individuals in developing their advocacy skills? What tools are out there to help you measure the success of your efforts? Do you have self-advocates as staff or serving as board members? If not, how can you change that? These questions and more will be answered during this Peer Learning Community on Self Advocacy and Self Determination kicking off Wednesday, April 17 and running through May 29. Register now before March 22 for early bird discounts which will allow up to three participants from your chapter to join in for only $179. After March 22, the rate will be $199. Find out more and register now.
DPS Early Registration Deadline Extended
The early registration deadline for the Disability Policy Seminar April 15-17 in Washington, D.C. has been extended to Thursday, March 21 which means you still have time to take advantage of discounted registration rates. Check out www.disabilitypolicyseminar.org for program schedule and special event information. Plan to attend our Self-Advocate and Sibling Meet & Greet sessions and a special continental breakfast on Capitol Hill just before your appointments with your elected representatives on Wednesday morning. And, new this year, a special “newcomers” track offers sessions designed for people who are new to federal public policy advocacy to answer questions and give you the background you need to make your case when you head to Capitol Hill.
Cigna Foundation Funds Health Promotion Projects
The Cigna Foundation, the charitable arm of the Cigna Corporation and its subsidiaries, supports organizations which are promoting wellness by building awareness, expanding opportunities by reaching across barriers, developing leaders in community service and connecting communities to create networks addressing complex social challenges. There is no maximum or minimum grant. However, a typical first-time grant is $5,000. All organizations requesting funding must be recognized as a tax-exempt nonprofit organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Grant guidelines, FAQs and Instructions.
Autism Awareness Month Toolkit Available
There been much debate about the new edition of the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM) coming out in May which will change the definitions of certain disorders on the autism spectrum. But The Arc and Autism NOW would like to use our platform during April to raise awareness about what the word “autism” means to the individuals who live with it on a daily basis. We will use our blogs, newsletters and social media channels to spark a conversation in April by asking the question: What’s YOUR Definition of Autism?” We invite you to join us in this effort by using this promotional toolkit which containing sample messages that you can put out during April. Questions, please contact Shelly DeButts at 202-534-3710 or email@example.com.
How to Sell the National Convention to Your Board
In two weeks, registration will open for The Arc’s annual National Convention, this year in Bellevue, WA on the East Side of Seattle August 3-5. It can be challenging for nonprofit organizations to afford to send all of the staff members who could benefit from attending Convention each year. But the benefits to your chapter can far outweigh the expense. Here are some tips to help you quantify the benefits and offer a common-sense proposal to your board to demonstrate exactly why you and your key staff members should attend the National Convention.
Summer is Prime Time for Car Donations
The summer months are traditionally high volume months for car donations. If you are already participating in The Arc’s Car Donation program, be sure to ramp up your marketing efforts ahead of time to ensure that you are top of mind when people in your community decide to donate an old vehicle to charity. These efforts could include articles or ads in your upcoming newsletter, e-mail blasts to your supporters or posts on social media. And, you should always have a donation link and the toll-free car donation number (1-800-ARC-CAR0) featured prominently on your Website. If you are not currently taking advantage of The Arc’s Car Donation Program, you can sign up now at no cost and receive materials to help you market the program. If you would like advice on how to successfully market the program, please contact Shelly DeButts at 202-534-3710.
News & Action Items
Help People Discover Your Self Advocacy Programs
Does your chapter have a self-advocacy program? You should have a current listing on www.selfadvocacyonline.org so that people can find you! The Arc has partnered with the University of Minnesota to populate a map and listings of self-advocacy groups across the country. If you told us your chapter supports a self-advocacy group when we fielded our Chapter Profile survey, you were automatically added to Self-Advocacy Online, a site created to foster self-advocacy among people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. However, the information is now several years old and needs to be updated and added to. You can add or update a listing directly on the site.
Dance Company Honors The Arc’s Tim Quinn
ReVision dance company, under Artistic Director Shannon Quinn, will perform Just Be with children who have intellectual and developmental and other disabilities from the Mamie D. Lee School in Washington, D.C. In addition to the D.C.-based performers, performers with I/DD from The Arc of the Northern Chesapeake Region appear on film during this special show on April 27 at 8:00 p.m. This performance will be followed by a VIP reception organized in partnership with The Arc to honor the memory of Tim Quinn, Shannon’s father and a dedicated and influential part of The Arc for many years. Tickets for the VIP performance and reception are $50 and proceeds will support Dance Place and The Arc of the U.S. Find out more and purchase tickets at www.danceplace.org or call (202)-269-1600.
Webinars Opportunities to Help with Promoting Health
As part of The Arc’s HealthMeet program to reduce health disparities among people with I/DD, this continuing webinar series offers resources and information on certain topics related to promoting health for people with I/DD. All sessions are held on Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. EST. Pre-registration is required.
March 20 Putting Nutrition on Your Radar: fact vs. fiction when it comes to nutrition.
April 3 Practice Without Pressure: reducing stress and anxiety for people with I/DD during doctor’s appointments.
Nevada Governor Proclaims Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month
Thanks to representatives from The Arc in Nevada advocating on behalf of people with I/DD, Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval signed a proclamation officially declaring March to be Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month in the state of Nevada. While The Arc engages in awareness activities each March on a national basis, not every state has an official proclamation and the original proclamation issued by President Ronald Reagan in 1987 was only for that year. However, advocates from several states have recently had success in petitioning their state to officially recognize March as “our” month.
The Arc welcomes new CEO of The Arc of Atlantic County (NJ), Michael J. David-Wilson and wishes a happy retirement to former CEO Deborah Davies who retired from The Arc of Atlantic County after 29 years of leadership.