The third priority area under Disability Rights Nebraska's Strategic Plan for FY 2013-2017 is Empowering Others to Achieve Full Participation. The image of the future for this priority recognizes that empowering people who have been devalued strengthens our communities and our organization's commitment to “nothing about us without us.” This image also affirms our belief that people who experience disabilities are the experts when it comes to living with a disability and it is only in partnership with them that we can seek justice and empowerment for them. Further, it is through visible action and the power of positive expectations that we can collaborate with others to create meaningful results. Finally, through compassion, really listening to others, and building trusting relationships, we can share a common purpose to support people’s hopes, dreams, and things not yet imagined.
One strategy identified to achieve the image of the future note above is to enable individuals to become strong advocates by providing self-advocacy and peer advocacy trainings, including ongoing support and follow-up to participants after the trainings. During FY 2013 we worked in collaboration with the Region 5 Systems Consumer Family Coalition (R5CFC) to develop the introductory module of a self-advocacy curriculum for people with mental illnesses in assisted living facilities and day treatment/rehabilitation programs. The R5CFC provided $20,000 in funding to support the development of the initial self-advocacy training module and R5CFC members, along with members of the Disability Rights Nebraska Protection and Advocacy for Mental Illness Advisory Council (PAIMI AC), served on the Self Advocacy Curriculum Project Advisory Group. During FY 2014 we continued our collaborative work with the R5CFC to develop the second module which focused on advocacy resources and information in five area: employment, housing, benefits, mental health services and personal protection. The R5CFC provided an additional $20,000 to develop the 5 modules for this curriculum and members from the R5CFC, along with PAIMI AC members continued to provide advice on project implementation activities.
For FY 2015 we are continuing our efforts to complete the entire curriculum and will be developing the third and final module for the self-advocacy curriculum that is focused on self-advocacy skills development. We are hopeful that the R5CFC will continue to collaborate on the project by providing financial support and having members serve on the project advisory committee.
The Social Role Valorization (SRV) workshop was held on May 19 - 21, 2015 at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln. Darcy Elks and Marnie Crowley facilitated the workshop.
- Forty-seven (47) people from Nebraska attended.
Nebraska Wesleyan is interested in offering the Social Role Valorization workshop as an elective or for class credit.