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One of the ways the NJCDD works to promote the goals and objectives in its five-year plan is by offering grants to organizations and programs that are true innovators in providing services to people with developmental disabilities. Each fiscal year, the Council accepts proposals from qualified applicants. Once grant proposals are evaluated, grants may be awarded on single or multi-year bases.
When selecting programs to support, the NJCDD searches for new, creative, and sustainable programs that broaden opportunities for people with developmental disabilities in New Jersey.
The following is a list of the programs and organizations that are currently receiving grants from the NJCDD.
Community Access Unlimited (CAU)
Advocates & Family Guide to Services (Mental Health)
The goal of this project is to develop and disseminate the 2nd Edition of the Family Crisis Handbook, a guidebook detailing how to access services for children and adults with co-occurring developmental and psychiatric disorders. Using the July 2009 Family Crisis Handbook as a springboard, the grantee will develop a list of current resources and detailed contact information. The guide will describe how to navigate the system and will define the key players and their role in connecting families and individuals to service options. Before publishing the guide, individuals with disabilities, family members, service providers, advocates, professional experts, and agency representatives throughout the state will be invited to share input and suggestions. Content will be available in English and Spanish. An electronic version of the handbook will be produced for download. In addition, the grantee will research the viability of creating an app for smart phones for added and convenient access to important information and phone numbers.
SEVA – Special Education Volunteer Advocate Training
The goal of this project, offered in English and in Spanish, is to establish a Special Education Volunteer Advocates (SEVA) program. Building on their existing 6-part Resource Parent Training Program, SPAN will develop a curriculum to address topics in special education law and regulations including: how to be a successful advocate and how to build consensus at IEP meetings. The project eliminates barriers to participation by providing child care and travel stipends, and will meet the needs of the full range of families in NJ including historically under-served families. An external evaluator will measure outcomes and develop a plan to sustain the project.
New Jersey Association of Community Providers (NJACP)
Coalition for a DSP Living Wage
The goal of this project is to build and grow a strategic coalition to create urgency around the issue of direct support professional (DSP) wages, and build pressure that compels policymakers to move it forward. It will also serve as a roadmap for continued engagement to achieve the full DSP Living Wage by FY/2024 and a model for future advocacy to address other challenges facing the profession.
The Boggs Center on Developmental Disabilities
Partners in Policymaking
Partners in Policymaking, (PIP) has been part of the work of the NJCDD since 1996. Currently, the program is being provided under contract by The Boggs Center. The goal of this program is to prepare the next generation of disability advocates to work toward meaningful change in our state. Selected participants learn about best practices and important areas for advocacy from nationally-known advocates, self-advocates, experts, and professionals. This leadership development and advocacy education program for adults with developmental disabilities and family members plays a vital role in helping New Jersey to fulfill the spirit of the Developmental Disabilities and Bill of Rights Act, to “assure that individuals with developmental disabilities and their families participate in the design of and have access to needed community services, individualized supports, and other forms of assistance that promote self-determination, independence, productivity, and integration and inclusion in all facets of community life.” The program, implemented over the course of a year, is comprised of three curricular components. 1) A monthly series; including eight in-person, intensive, weekend educational sessions. 2) Leadership Development integrated into each session, and 3) Homework assignments, including the development of an Advocacy Action Plan that will evolve throughout their participation.
The Arc of New Jersey
Training and Resource Databank
The goals of this project are to research the training resources currently available to individuals, families, and disability advocates in NJ, develop an accessible online databank of those resources, identify gaps in the training and materials, and develop recommendations to address those gaps.
Rutgers University – Center for Advanced Infrastructure and Transportation (CAIT)
In Their Own Words: Transportation Issues and Obstacles Facing People with Developmental Disabilities
The goal of this project is to undertake direct research with persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), including those living in developmental centers, in order to develop a comprehensive report on the issue of transportation and how it affects people with I/DD. After compiling 400 interviews, researchers will conduct quantitative analysis to develop a summary report identifying trends and themes, and to formulate recommendations. The project team will then produce a report that will include real-life examples and personal stories to put a ‘face’ on the transportation issue, which will assist in advocacy. The recommendations will focus on practical systemic issues as well as broader advocacy issues. The research team will develop a written summary as well as an audio summary. These two components can be used together or separately to disseminate the compelling stories of how transportation affects the lives and experiences of people with I/DD.
The Boggs Center on Developmental Disabilities
Building Capacity to Improve Adult Health Care for Patients with I/DD
The goal of this project is to impart and improve the knowledge, skills, and attitudes of health care providers; leading to improved health care for adults with I/DD. The grantee will catalogue existing curricula for health/allied health professionals that teach about caring for adult patients with I/DD and develop a resource list. They will lead focus groups of physicians to identify gaps in knowledge, barriers to providing care, and educational priorities. Based on their findings, they will develop and deliver two tiered-curricular-modules, each of which will be offered up to two times during the initial funding period. In total, up to four broad cohorts of practicing clinicians (Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, and Emergency Medicine) who provide care to adults will be trained. Each set of modules will consist of three pieces: a grand rounds presentation, a case conference presentation, and a self-advocate/family panel presentation. These training components will be implemented through mechanisms already in place in academic medical settings to maximize the ease of implementation, replicability of the model, and attendance at each session.