Join Us At LIFE Conference 2015!

December 16, 2014

Do you have a family member with disabilities or work with persons with disabilities? Would you like to learn more on how you can help family, friends or co-workers with disabilities lead their best lives?

LIFE Conference

Then join Delaware Family Voices and many others on Thursday, January 15th, for the 17th annual Delaware LIFE Conference.

What Is LIFE Conference?

LIFE Conference is Delaware’s largest conference devoted to issues faced by children and adults with disabilities. It’s primary goal is to support persons with disabilities, provide relevant information, and educate conference attendees in each of the following four areas:

Legislation: Join in an interactive panel with federal and state policy makers. Learn more about Delaware’s 2015 Policy priorities, and how DART is working on a Transit redesign

Independence Through Assistive Technology (AT): Learn why pediatric based Movement and Mobility related Assistive Technology (MMAT) is the next step for children with disabilities. Learn how to maximize overall accessibility in the community setting, and why access to assistive technology for young children is vital.

Family: Better understand opioid abuse and its treatment options. Learn how to become an empowered self-advocate. Hear about the STAND – Stop The Abuse Now Delaware – initiative.

Education: Learn about state plans to improve results for children with disabilities. Understand how schools are addressing the impact of childhood trauma in the classrooms. Listen to an overview of the DelAWARE DisABILITY Hub.

This one day event brings together a broad assortment of information designed to serve persons with disabilities and their families, as well as resources and knowledge to further help them live LIFE to the fullest.

LIFE Conference Delaware

LIFE Conference is made possible through a joint effort of many Delaware organizations whose primary purpose is to assist and enhance the lives of persons with disabilities and their families.

The LIFE Conference 2015 Agenda

LIFE Conference 2015 attendees will have the opportunity to:

  • Listen to Keynote Speaker Michael Gamel-McCormick, Associate Executive Director for Research and Policy at the Association of University Centers on Disabilities, and the Director of the Promise Grant Technical Assistance project.
  • Attend sessions on relevant topics in Legislation, Independence, Family and Education.
  • Hear from a host of speakers and panel members knowledgeable in a wide variety of disabilities needs.
  • Visit exhibitors dedicated to persons with disabilities and their families.
  • Enjoy a lunch full of networking opportunities.

Disabilities Conference

For complete details, check out the LIFE Conference 2015 Agenda and the detailed session topics.

LIFE Conference 2015 Event Details

LIFE Conference 2015 event and registration details are:

When: Thursday, January 15, 2015

Where: Dover Downs Hotel, 1131 North DuPont Highway, Dover DE

Time: 8:00 am to 3:45 pm

General Registration Fees: $50 by January 1, 2015; $75 after January 1st.

Student/Consumer Registration Fees are $25.

Sponsorships are available for select attendees. See below for details

Complete the LIFE Conference 2015 Registration form to reserve a spot.

Got questions about LIFE Conference 2015? Contact LIFE Conference directly at (302) 691-3187.

Announcing DE Family Voices Parent Sponsorships!

Delaware Family Voices is pleased to announce a limited number of sponsorships for families who want to attend the Life Conference, but can not afford it. Travel reimbursement is also available for recipients from New Castle and Sussex Counties. Please contact Erica Schetter at (302) 669-3033 or p2p@defv.org for more information.

DE Family Voices At LIFE Conference 2015

We hope to see you at LIFE Conference 2015! Be sure to stop by the Delaware Family Voices exhibit and see how we can help you. Learn about upcoming training sessions and support groups, and how they might benefit you and your family.

Delaware Family Voices

Will you be attending LIFE Conference 2015? Have you attended prior LIFE conferences? Share your experiences with us!

LIFE = Legislation Independence Family Education

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Delaware Family Voices is a 501 C3 Non-profit organization. A Donation to our organization helps support Delaware families in need.

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Images from LIFE Conference 2015 and Delaware Family Voices.

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The Creating A Common Vision Summit – A Success Story

October 29, 2014

On Wednesday September 17, 2014, Delaware Family Voices hosted the Creating A Common Vision Summit. People from across Delaware came together in a conjoined effort to improve the lives of children with mental health and severe behavioral health needs. It was a successful day packed with networking and collaboration.

The Summit Goal

The goal of the Creating a Common Vision summit was to develop a strategic plan for the development of a Delaware based parent-run chapter of the Federation of Families.

Federation of Famlies

The Federation of Families is a national organization that focuses on issues relevant to families of children with severe emotional, mental health, and/or behavioral challenges. Learn more about the mission of the Federation of Families organization at our blog, Federation of Families Is Coming To Delaware and at the Federation of Families website.

Let’s Get Talking!

The Summit was attended by representatives from agencies across the state, including state departments, school districts, mental health agencies, and community agencies. Also attending the summit were parents of children with severe mental health and/or behavioral health issues.

Children's Mental Health Programs

 

Everyone in attendance had one goal in common – to assist children with severe mental health and behavior health needs. What an impressive collaborative effort by  everyone in attendance!

The Summit opened with a warm welcome from Ann Phillips, Executive Director of Delaware Family Voices.

Delaware Family Voices

 

Ann began the conference with a few words about Delaware Family Voices and the Family To Family Information Center, the infrastructure under which Delaware Family Voices operates.

The Division of Prevention and Behavioral Health (DPBHS) was on hand to support our Delaware families in developing a strategic plan to address children’s mental health issues in Delaware.

Delaware Services DPBHS

 

DPBHS representative Barbara Messick addressed how they can better engage families throughout Delaware. She also provided families with information about the services DPBHS already have available to help children with mental health and behavior issues.

The Summit was the perfect setting to honor Delaware Family Voices’ 2014 Volunteer of the Year award winner, Trina Cale-Rosario. Trina is a dedicated volunteer to Delaware Family Voices, assisting us in helping families across Delaware.

Volunteers

 

Trina not only is a key member of our Family Leadership Advisory Council, she also volunteers at many community events on behalf of Delaware Family Voices, and she is a trained Support Parent for our Parent to Parent program. Great job Trina! A heart-felt thank you from Delaware Family Voices.

The Summit was the ideal venue for a collaborative brain storming and strategic planning session.

Children Behavior Issues

 

Summit attendees were divided into two separate work groups, each tasked with a different topic:

Group 1: What would be an effective vision, mission, and value statement for the Delaware Federation of Families Chapter?

Group 2: Effective parent and professional development and improving systems of care within the state of Delaware.

This interactive, collaborative portion of the Summit proved to be a most valuable experience, with very helpful take-aways that will further our efforts in supporting children with mental health and behavior issues.

Delaware Federation of Families

 

With the assistance of our facilitator, Diana Autin, Summit participants were actively engaged in their focus groups, working hard to develop ideas and strategies for creating the parent-run Delaware chapter of Federation of Families.

The Summit was a smashing success! The information received during the work groups has helped Delaware Family Voices develop a series of common interests and will be instrumental in the development of the infrastructure for the Delaware chapter of the Federation of Families. We are already well on the way to completing the chapter’s mission statement.

Thank You Everyone!

The Delaware Family Voices staff is very appreciative of everyone’s efforts and participation in the Creating A Common Vision Summit. Your participation was tantamount to the overall success of the Summit. As the families move forward with the development of the Delaware Federation of Families chapter, they now have a wealth of information from which to create the chapter.

Would you like to become involved with the Delaware chapter of Federation of Families? Please let us know! You can either leave a Comment below, or contact Wanda directly at snf@defv.org or (302) 669-3034.

A Very Special Thank You To SFN!

Delaware Family Voices would like to thank the Statewide Family Network Grant (SFN), who provided the funding for the Creating A Common Vision Summit. The Statewide Family Network Program is also made possible through the SFN grant via SAMHSA. The focus of this program is to assist families that have children with mental health and/or severe behavioral challenges to obtain resources and information. Another key component of this program is to assist these families with the creation of a parent run organization within Delaware, which in turn, led to the development and execution of the Creating a Common Vision Summit.


Join Us! October Parent Respite Co-Op Meet & Greets

October 6, 2014

Delaware Family Voices is hosting two special Parent Respite Co-Op opportunities this October.

What is the Parent Respite Co-Op?

The parent-run Respite Co-Op is a free child care exchange for parents of children with special health care needs in New Castle County.

Respite Co-Ops

Join us at one, or both, of our October meetings to learn more about this Respite Co-Op opportunity and the unique way you can receive respite care.

October Respite Co-Op Meeting Details

The Parent Respite Care Exchange Co-op is hosting two October Meet and Greet events. Don’t miss this opportunity for a night of networking with other parents, meeting the children, refreshments, and fun.

1. When: Monday, October 13 from 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.

Where: Easter Seals Blg – Large Conference Room, 61 Corporate Circle, New Castle DE 19720

2. When: Saturday, October 18 from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.

Where: Ebenezer United Methodist Church, 525 Polly Drummond Rd.,  Newark, DE 19711

RSVP required to Peggy Prygon at 302-669-3032, or via email at peggy@defv.org.

Link to event flyer, Parent Respite Co-Op Meet & Greets.

Hope To See You There!

Join us this October for the opportunity to connect with other families with similar needs, and a chance for the kids with hang out with other kids.

See you soon!


Join Us For Boscov’s Friends Helping Friends Event

October 1, 2014

How would you like to save 25% off your purchase at Boscov’s and help Delaware Family Voices, all at the same time? You can, on October 21st, 2014, during the Boscov’s Friends Helping Friends shopping day.

What is Boscov’s Friends Helping Friends?

Boscov’s Friends Helping Friends is a special day filled with shopping, fun, and fundraising, all designed to benefit area non-profit organizations. Last year, the Boscov’s Friends Helping Friends events raised over $500,000 for local non-profit organizations.

Friends Helping Friends

And this year, Delaware Family Voices is joining the fun and participating in the 2014 Boscov’s Friends Helping Friends Day.

Will you consider participating too? Will you help us, help you? Here’s how you can enjoy a fun-filled shopping day, and help Delaware Family Voices.

How You Can Help Delaware Family Voices

Do you enjoy shopping? Would you also like to support Delaware Family Voices? Boscov’s makes it easy with their Friends Helping Friends event.

For only $5, purchase a 25% off shopping pass from Delaware Family Voices. Then, on Tuesday, October 21, shop at any Boscov’s store between the hours of 9:00 am and 11:00 pm, and upon checkout, present your 25% off shopping pass. That’s all there is to it! Your $5 purchase turns into 25% off your Boscov’s purchase during this special one-day only event.

Boscov's Events

Best of all, your entire $5 purchase price for the shopping pass will directly benefit Delaware Family Voices.

Call Now For Your 25% Off Shopping Pass

It’s a great deal, and it helps support Delaware Family Voices. Here’s how you can purchase your own 25% shopping pass and support Delaware Family Voices at the same time:

  1. Before October 21st – Contact Delaware Family Voices directly at 302-669-3030 or via email at p2p@defv.org.
  2. On October 21st – Come to Boscov’s at Concord Mall between 9:00 am and 11:00 pm. Look for the Delaware Family Voices table to purchase your 25% off shopping pass and learn more about how Delaware Family Voices can assist you and your child with special needs.

Then shop away on October 21st! And while you are at Boscov’s enjoying your 25% off shopping spree, don’t forget to also enjoy free refreshments and register to win prizes including:

      • $500 shopping spree
      • $100 shopping spree
      • Door prizes
      • Store merchandise

Anyone who purchases a 25% off shopping pass is eligible to win prizes during the in-store event. Prizes and refreshments provided by Boscov’s.

Friends Helping Friends Event Details

The Boscov’s Friends Helping Friends special event is one-day only, and is available at all Boscov’s stores.

When: Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

Where: Any Boscov’s Store

Note: Delaware Family Voices will be at The Concord Mall, 4737 Concord Pike, Wilmington DE 19803

Time: 9:00 am to 11:00 pm.

Please note that this special offer is only valid for in-store purchases. It is not valid for phone or online purchases. It also cannot be combined with other discounts and promotions. Some merchandise items are excluded from the 25% discount, and some items are only eligible for either 15% or 10% discounts. Your 25% off shopping pass has a list of exclusions.

Hope to see you on Tuesday, October 21st!

We fully appreciate your continued support of Delaware Family Voices. Looking forward to talking and shopping with you on Tuesday, October 21st.

Friends Helping Friends

Happy Shopping! And thanks for stopping by to see us at Boscov’s in The Concord Mall. Go to Boscov’s Store Locator for other store locations.

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Images from Boscov’s, and M.Kalasnik via Flickr (Sign with arrow).


Join Us for National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day!

April 30, 2014

Thursday, May 8th, is National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day!

In recognition of all children and their families who struggle with mental health issues, Delaware Family Voices is hosting an awareness event this Thursday, May 8th at Bellevue State Park.

Childrens Mental Health Awareness

Our purpose is to spread awareness and to provide support for families with children experiencing any type of severe emotional, behavioral, or mental health needs.

So join us on May 8th as we put the spotlight on children’s mental health issues. Come on down to Bellevue State Park for an afternoon of fun activities and informative discussions.

Spotlight on Bullying

Delaware Family Voices is taking on the subject of bullying. During the event, listen to speakers tackle this issue, providing valuable information on how parents can best help their children deal with bullying.

Stop Bullying

Bullying, whether at home, school, or in the community, can have devastating effects on the mental health of children and teens. Our goal is to provide parents and their children with the opportunity to learn more about how to effectively fight back against bullying, as well as provide a safe avenue to ask your most pressing questions about bullying.

Other Discussion Opportunities

A representative from the State Division of Prevention and Behavioral Health Services will also be on hand to discuss suicide prevention.

Additionally, the event will include other therapy and behavioral health agencies, ready to provide families with the information they need to help their children with mental health concerns.

Fun For The Whole Family!

Bring the kids! While parents listen and discuss their questions and concerns about children’s mental health issues, the kids will be entertained with fun activities and snacks.

Paws for PeopleChildren’s activities will include:

  • Reading books to therapy dogs from Paws for People
  • Art activity station to create their own “masterpiece”
  • Learning relaxation techniques from a trained mental health therapist

The event also provides parents the opportunity to talk with mental health care suppliers. Gather information about therapy options and health related services available in Delaware.

Supporting Children’s Mental Health Issues

We hope to see you at this ground breaking event. Event details are:

Date: Thursday, May 8th, 2014

Where: Bellevue State Park, Pavillion #2

When: 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm

RSVP: Wanda Ford at (302) 669-3034, or at snf@defv.org

NOTE: Bellevue State Park charges a $3.00/car admission fee. Delaware Family Voices will pay the admission fee for the first 50 families to RSVP.

The event is Rain or Shine! See you on May 8th!

National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day, May 8, 2014

 

Link – Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day Flyer


Be Heard! Disability Day is April 2nd!

March 17, 2014

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014 is Delaware’s 7th Annual Disability Day in Legislative Hall

Are you the parent of a child with special needs? Do you have questions about disability services offered in Delaware? Do you want to know more about how the state can assist you and your child?

Would you like to talk with your state legislator about living with disabilities in Delaware, to help him better understand the needs of a person with disabilities?

Then you need to attend Delaware’s 7th annual Disability Day in Legislative Hall.

Disability Day Delaware

Disability Day at Legislative Hall is your opportunity to hear what the state can do for people with disabilities. It is also your opportunity to ask questions, and to discuss in greater detail the needs of people with disabilities living in Delaware.

The Disability Day Agenda

Disability Day attendees will learn more about the state’s current position in a wide range of topics relevant to people with disabilities.

  • Family Support Waiver
  • Dental Care Insurance
  • Community First Choice Option
  • Money Follows The Person
  • Personal Attendant Services Funding
  • Transition Coordinators
  • Source of Income Discrimination
  • Disability Law Program – Special Education Advocacy
  • Accessible Transportation
  • Building Infrastructures and Supports Needed to Phase Out the Issuance of Subminimum Wage Certification

Details about each agenda item can be found at 2013-2014 Legislative Priorities. These legislative priorities also make excellent talking points during conversations with state legislators.

Disability Day Event Details

When: Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

Time: 11:00 am to 3:30 am

Where: Legislative Hall, 411 Legislative Ave, Dover Delaware

Note: You must provide a valid photo ID such as a driver’s license to enter Legislative Hall.

Questions about Disability Day? Call the DDC office at (302) 739 – 3333.

Schedule Your Legislative Appointments Now

Are you interested in talking with your Delaware legislator about disability issues? Schedule an appointment now for Disability day to discuss your top disability issues directly with your legislator.

Delaware events

You are highly encouraged to schedule appointments in advance to secure time on Disability Day with your legislator. These links can help you navigate through the process of how to contact your legislator and schedule an appointment:

Remember – Your Voice Does Matter!

Your legislators are ready and waiting to hear from you. Yes, your voice really does matter!

Delaware Disability Day 2014

Check Disability Day at Legislative Hall for additional information on Disability Day and Delaware Developmental Disabilities Council for other upcoming DDC meetings and events.

Hope to see you there!

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Delaware Family Voices is a 501 C3 Non-profit organization. Consider Donating to our organization and help support Delaware families in need.

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Images:Delaware DDC and Bruno Buontempo via Flickr (Megaphone)


Volunteers Needed at Delaware Family Voices!

February 12, 2014

Looking for a meaningful way to give back? Have a few hours you could spare? Consider helping Delaware Family Voices on our upcoming Volunteer Day.

Volunteer Day at Delaware Family Voices

Thursday February 20th is Volunteer Day at Delaware Family Voices. Join others at our Wilmington office for a day of helping our organization. We are in need of volunteers to help with administrative tasks, including organizing resource cabinets and update materials. Hours are flexible between 10:00am to 3:00pm.

Feb_VolunteerA

Volunteers are also needed to help deliver resource materials across Delaware. Light refreshments will be provided.

Please contact Erica at (302) 669-3033 if you are interested in helping out on Volunteer Day.

Interested in volunteering with Delaware Family Voices but February 20th doesn’t work for you? Let us know. We anticipate several other special events over the next few weeks for which we will need volunteers to assist us.

We look forward to seeing you!