Creating Inclusive Communities for All

Last month, the ARC of Illinois hosted their 68th annual ARC Conference. From April 25-26, service professionals, educators, and many others came together to discuss how we can “Unite, Empower, Act” to create an inclusive society with all opportunities available to individuals with disabilities. Coming together united, attendees were able to share new tools, new ideas, and best practices for supporting individuals.

Additionally, the conference offers individuals with disabilities the opportunity to share their stories, complete with struggles, successes, and dreams.

Center for Independent Futures staff pose after attending and presenting at ARC ConferenceCenter for Independent Futures staff made two presentations at this year’s conference. The first panel, titled “Creating Housing Solutions Through Community Partnerships,”shared information about our New Futures Initiative™ training. This program highlights our current work with family groups supported by a grant from the Coleman Foundation. The panel presentation featured families, service providers, developers, and supportive technology providers who shared how this collaborative approach can help families create new community housing solutions.

The second panel, led by Change Champions Project Director Kathy Lyons, focused on creating inclusive communities. Members of four diverse communities shared how they are creating inclusive communities for all, including individuals with disabilities. The Change Champions project, funded by a grant from the Illinois Council on Developmental Disabilities, illustrates what happens when we make inclusion a priority.

We would like to thank the ARC of Illinois for the opportunity to present our innovative solutions to problems facing the disability community today at the ARC Conference. If you would like more information about housing training or the Change Champions project, call us at (847) 328-2044.

Counting Down to Bike the Drive 2018

Chicago’s bikers are getting special treatment on Lake Shore Drive in just 53 short days! On May 27, the city is shutting down Lake Shore Drive to all vehicles for bikers to ride between the Museum of Science and Industry to Bryn Mawr on what we all hope will be a gorgeous Sunday. Bike the Drive 2018 is a wonderful opportunity to experience a piece of Chicago that most of us don’t get to see very often.

Past Dream Team poses for group photo prior to Bike the Drive 2018Center for Independent Futures Dream Team is riding again this year! Many of our bikers are riding to raise funds to support our mission: creating innovative service models that support individuals with disabilities in living full, independent lives. Like past years, you and your friends have the thrilling opportunity to ride alongside our vibrant community of bikers. All you need to do is register for Bike the Drive.

Once you have signed up for Bike the Drive 2018, you can make yourself a member of our fundraising team through CrowdRise, a site that hosts fundraisers for nonprofits. Signing up is easy, but if you need any help, please reach out to us.

Want to participate, but know biking isn’t really your thing? You can donate to Center for Independent Futures’ team directly, or you can donate to the account of one of our participants on CrowdRise.

The most unique bike ride of the year awaits — register today and then add yourself to our CrowdRise as a member of Team Center for Independent Futures!

For more information about this event, email Jeff Morthorst or call our Evanston office at (847) 324-2044.

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