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Author: jmeddy Created: 11/5/2009 12:36 PM
General Organization News Posts

On Thursday, October 23, 2014, Linkages presents "Benefits and Options Counseling for Seniors and Adults with Disabilities" with presenters Elisa Todd, Aging and Disability Resource Network (ADRN) Specialist and Esther Craven, Benefits Specialist. The program will take place from 10:30 am to 12:00 noon at the Bernard Horwich Building, 3003 W. Touhy Avenue, Chicago.

Learn about the new Aging and Disability Resource Network (ADRN) and how it can assist you with navigating the long-term supports and services that are available for seniors and adults with disabilities, including:

  • Social Security, SSDI and SSI
  • Medicare, Medicaid and the Health Insurance Marketplace
  • Veterans Benefit
  • Real Estate Tax Exemptions
  • Options Counseling
  • Housing
  • RTA Reduced and Ride Free Program and ADA Paratransit

To register or to request special accomodations, please contact Rosann Corcoran, Linkages Coordinator at 773-508-1694 or Rosann.Corcoran@cje.net.

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Have Dreams Music & Games, Tech SCILS, Teen Club and other programs are now taking enrollments for Park Ridge and Evanston locations. After-school programs build critical social skills and give children and teens a place of community where they can engage with their peers.

The Have Dreams’ SCILS: Advanced Video Game Design course is new for fall. Starting October 1, this innovative class will take kids with ASD ages 10 and up to the next level with their coding skills, exploring Unity 3D, Javascript and Maya. Space for this pilot program is extremely limited!

Email dlabrose@havedreams.org to learn more about the after school programs and to register.

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Do you recognize the artwork of this Arts of Life featured artist? This introspective individual prefers to make work that incorporates multiple mediums, bold colors and meaningful text. Still stumped? Click here to learn the identity of this mystery artist and read the thoughtful interview that transpired with new North Shore volunteer Eric Kane.

The piece above, “Celebrate Graffiti,” and work by other Arts of Life North Shore artists will be on sale at the 24th Annual Arts and Crafts Adventure in Park Ridge on Saturday, September 20th from 9 am-5 pm. Stop by to say hello and check out some awesome artwork!

Read more to learn about other upcoming Arts of Life events.

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Toast to a great cause!
On September 18, 2014, Visibility Arts will host “The Path to Independence: Finding Your Voice,” an art show featuring artists with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The art show will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. at 824 Dempster Street in partnership with the first annual Chicago Dempster Charity Wine Walk. Fourteen artists will display their work while guests enjoy wine pours from Vinic Wine and hors d’oeuvres.

Visibility Arts is a comprehensive visual arts program that offers a combination of group learning experiences and hands-on studio time. Classes take place in a 7,000 square foot space in Mt. Prospect that includes fully equipped studio facilities and a spacious gallery for exhibitions. Visibility Arts is a program of Search, Inc., a community-based nonprofit that serves more than 600 people and their families annually at locations stretching from the southwest side of Chicago to the northern suburbs of Waukegan and Mount Prospect.

The Dempster Charity Wine Walk’s suggested cash donation of $15 per person will benefit Search’s No Boundaries - Train for Work, Train for Life program as well as The Evanston Art Center. No Boundaries is an innovative, tuition-based program designed to help individuals with disabilities build workplace skills, obtain competitive employment, achieve personal and career goals, improve communication skills and participate more fully in the community.

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Beginning on September 9 and running through September 20, the Living With FASD 2014 Summit will be held online. The purpose of this annual Summit is to provide families and professionals with the most up-to-date training, based on the newest research on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). Registration for the summit is free.

This year’s theme is “Building A Bridge to Adulthood.” The transition from adolescence to adulthood with FASD can be a struggle for many with this condition and their families. An overarching principle is how the dysmaturity typical in FASD plays such an important role in the transition to adulthood for those (and their families) with FASD.

For more information and to participate in the online summit, click here.

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On October 24 and 25, the S.I.B.S. Network, Advocate Illinois Masonic, and Clearbrook will sponsor a two-day Sibshop workshop conducted by Don Meyer, award winning Director of the Sibling Support Project and creator of the Sibshop model. The Sibling Support Project is the national leader in providing training and education on sibling issues and programs. The workshop will be held from 8:30 a.m to 3:30 p.m. on both days at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, 836 Wellington, Chicago, IL.

Don Meyer has presented on issues facing families of people with special needs all over the world. His trainings on the Sibshop model have resulted in the creation of over 450 Sibshops throughout the United States as well as Argentina, Canada, the Czech Republic, Guatemala, Iceland, England, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, and Turkey. Don created SibKids, SibTeen, and SibNet, the Internet’s first and largest Yahoogroups and Facebook groups for young and adult siblings of people with disabilities, reaching over 3000 siblings every day. Click here for Don's full bio.

The Sibshop's first day topic is Lifelong Issues Faced by Brothers and Sisters, and day two focuses on how to Become a Sibshop Facilitator. Participants may choose to attend either day one only ($79), or day one and two together ($109). Anyone wishing to become a Sibshop Facilitator must attend both days.

Click here to register.

Download a flyer.

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Calling all food and beer lovers...come out to World of Beer - Evanston on Thursday, October 2nd!

Center for Independent Futures (CIF) is hosting a Bank of America Chicago Marathon - Team CIF fundraiser at World of Beer, 1601 Sherman Avenue in Evanston. For the entire day (11:00 am until 1:00 am the next morning), 15% of all sales will go to Team CIF.

IMPORTANT NOTE: For sales to contribute to our fundraiser, you must let your server know you are supporting CIF.

This year, Team CIF is made up of seven dedicated runners who will be racing 26.2 miles on October 12th to support the hopes and dreams of individuals with disabilities. Their goal is to raise a total of $10,000 to support CIF programs and services. So far, runners have raised just over $5,000.

We need your help to reach our $10,000 goal! Join us at World of Beer on October 2nd, or support our team by making a donation here.

You can also support Team CIF on race day by coming down to cheer on our runners as they pass Charity Mile. We’ll be stationed at Mile 14 and plan to be the loudest cheerers on the block! More details about Charity Mile to come soon...

Learn more about World of Beer...

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Be sure to note the Fall Community Days on Central Street on your calendar now so this great opportunity for Center for Independent Futures does not pass you by! Shop on Saturday, October 11th or Sunday, October 12th at participating stores and CIF benefits!

What could be simpler...you do the shopping and errands you already plan to do and help CIF get the much needed funds to continue the work that you already support at the same time. This shopping and fundraising event takes place during store hours – mostly 10am-5pm. The event is sponsored by The Central Street Business Association in partnership with the Central Street Neighbors Association.

Download the flyer...

How many more reasons do you need to get out to Fall Community Weekend on Central Street October 11th-12th and support CIF?


Read on for even more reasons....

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Center for Independent Futures Graduate Life Tools Camp is offered to individuals who have completed our regular day camp experience, and are ready for a less structured away-from-home overnight Life Tools Camp adventure. Read on to learn more about this year's Grad Camp:



DAY 1 – Planning meals, grocery shopping and cooking together…


When this year’s campers arrived in New Buffalo the sky was cloudy, so the group headed off to a favorite local grocery store, Barny’s. As the group negotiated what vegetables to buy, Cody said “I haven’t eaten a vegetable since the ‘90s!” By the time the shoppers checked out, the cashier and baggers were wiping away tears of laughter at the jokes being tossed about. When the sun peaked out, the group seized the opportunity to hit the beach and play in the surf, sand, and sun! Tips for sun safety were shared and everyone was prepared with sunscreen and hats. The Michigan side of the lake beaches hold perfect skipping stones and the walk home gave campers time to smell the roses and listen to the birds sing. Everyone pitched in to make an evening meal that included salad, grilled corn on the cob, hamburgers, hot dogs, brats and red potatoes. Afterward, the screened in porch proved to be a great space to play a favorite card game, Phase 10.

DAY 2 – A day of play and social engagement…

On Tuesday, the group learned a valuable lesson about Michigan – it’s important to call ahead because blueberry orchards are closed on Tuesdays! Flexibility is key, so mini golf became the morning activity with a “hole in one” as the highlight. Grilled pizza prepared by the group made a great lunch, and the afternoon was spent around the pool with the most fun water fight ever! An evening meal out at a local favorite, “The Stray Dog” and dessert at the popular “Oinks” ice cream topped off the day at play.

Read more and see our Grad Camp Photos...


 

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Last year, we shared the exciting news that Center for Independent Futures (CIF) had been awarded a planning grant by The Coleman Foundation to establish Community Partnerships in four Chicagoland locations.

Providing housing for individuals with disabilities has historically been a task for state and federal governments, however, CIF has long been committed to bringing this issue into the community domain. In response to the current lack of affordable, sustainable housing options for people with disabilities, the grant set out to create a replicable process to convene and form family-community partnerships as a first step toward creating sustainable community-based alternative housing models for individuals with disabilities.Now, as the grant periods come to a close, we have an exciting update with outcomes from eighteen months of incredible learnings.

Over the past year and a half, CIF has facilitated meetings with family groups in four Chicagoland locations: Northern suburbs, Western suburbs, Southwestern suburbs, and the city’s South Side. While CIF’s involvement has come to an end, families and community partners are now moving forward to establish formal organizations, search for properties, and engage with developers and other housing partners to reach their goal to create alternative housing in their communities.

We are excited to share an outcome of our work – Alternative Housing Options for Individuals with Disabilities: A Guide for Forming and Implementing Community Partnerships. The guide will assist individuals, their families, and social service organizations to convene and form community partnerships for the purpose of creating affordable, sustainable alternative housing options for individuals with disabilities. The guide provides ways to determine individual and organizational readiness, offers alternative thinking and critical questions to be considered in the transition to independent living and serves as a process template.

Download Alternative Housing Options for Individuals with Disabilities

While the guide can serve as a starting point, CIF’s New Futures Initiative offers a comprehensive, facilitated process that incudes community organizing, housing acquisition, support design and implementation, and ongoing operations of community-based housing solutions. If you are interested in creating a community living option in your area, please contact Center for Independent Futures at center@independentfutures.com or 847-328-2044.

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