I've finally put off the work I should be doing--and created this new page on this blog here!
It's focused on sharing ideas to improve inclusion for those with disabilities in the Church, most especially in Primary and Mutual (although inclusion should occur at ALL levels).
I'd like to start the "James' Circle" movement--supporting our youth to make friends with their peers with disabilities! I'm also hoping to begin to work on creating a simple manual for training/education and assistance in this.
Here are some great websites I've found with similar programs. They're listed on my page as well. So PLEASE check out my page--and if you have other websites/groups/movements that are good--please share :)
**P.S. I'm also beginning the process of gathering pictures that could be used in a CD ROM for the Church--for those who use "PECS" pictures for communication. If you have access to any such pictures, please share if you're willing!
Here are some of the websites I've found. Hopefully they can be helpful to those from Wards and Branches looking for help/ideas:
http://www.friendshipcircle.com/about_friendship_circle_international.asp This is a "buddy" type of volunteer program through the Jewish religion. Their mission and vision is awesome!!!
http://www.iamnorm.org/home.aspx This is from the Inclusion Youth Council! Have to love them!!!
http://www.pathwayskids.org/dream/include_me.html This is another great set of programs--for BOTH children and teenagers. I ESPECIALLY like the children ideas on this one---to start it young!!! Brilliant idea!! I can testify--it made a HUGE difference to me that my nursery and Primary were ALWAYS fully inclusive!!! Way back in the late 70's and early 80's!!!
http://www.pathwayskids.org/ Direct link to Pathways (same as above)
http://www.circleofriends.org/ Explanation web site of the Circle of Friends idea. This idea is not new, in the "disability" world--but A LOT of parents and families do not know about this--or how to do it. Yet--the concept could be IDEAL for wards and branches--along with the "disability" concept of "natural supports"!!!
http://tucollaborative.org/pdfs/Toolkits_Monographs_Guidebooks/relationships_family_friends_intimacy/Natural_Supports.pdf Here's a basic explanation of "Natural Supports"--so ideal for Wards and Branches!!!
http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/edi/pcp/ This is a great website about Person Centered Planning. Again, a GREAT ideal thing for families and Wards/Branches!!!
Anyone else know any good ideas? Let me know :)