Updates from the Community Advisory Committee (CAC)

CAC Member News

Barbara Beaulieu recently retired from KFI and LyAnn Grogan will be completing the third year of Barbara’s term.

Former and longtime CAC member Jane Bell was recently honored by the Autism Society of Maine for providing 18 years of resources, assistance and experience to families with autism.

Jon McGovern was recently honored with the Speaking Up for Us (SUFU) 2022 Marcia Rosen Award for the Central Maine Chapter. This award is given to a member of the chapter that speaks up, is dedicated to their growth as a self-advocate, and encourages other chapter members.

Avery Olmsted joined co-panelists Diane Boas and Nancy Moore in Talk to Me – Discussion Around Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD) Experiences in the Healthcare System at the recent Maine Primary Care Association’s 2022 Annual Conference in Rockport, ME. The panel was moderated by Nancy Cronin. The panelists engaged in a crucial conversation about treating and caring for individuals with IDD, with the goal of providing insight and understanding for health center clinicians.

Kile Pelletier was recently honored with the Speaking Up for Us (SUFU) Paige Barton Award. This award is given each year to one self-advocate who represents the organization with distinction. Kile was recognized for his work in advocating for the end of the marriage penalty and for his service on numerous stakeholder groups, including self-directed services.

With support from CCIDS, CAC Co-Chairs Kate Quinn Finlay and Kile Pelletier will be attending the 2022 Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) Annual Meeting and Conference in Washington, DC on November 13-16, 2022. The theme of this year’s conference is Health Equity: Serving the Whole Person. Kate and Kile will be attending the Council on Leadership in Advocacy (COLA) meeting which is made up of individuals with disabilities and family members from each University Center across the AUCD network. COLA members are involved in Community Advisory Councils at University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDDs), AUCD Councils and Committees, AUCD Special Interest Groups, and other advocacy opportunities.

After two years of remote participation, Libby Stone-Sterling and the Maine Department of Labor, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) and partners oversaw the successful return of the Step Up Program to a five-week, on-campus living and learning experience for seven high school students or recent high school graduates with autism spectrum disorder. (See Step Up Students Explore STEM Education and Careers at UMaine).

Short Report from the CAC Meeting on October 24, 2022:

The CAC met by Zoom for one hour on Monday, October 24, 2022. In preparation for CCIDS’ Core Grant Application planning, the focus of this meeting was to invite CAC members to serve on at least one of the five possible area of emphasis groups: Education (K-12 through postsecondary); Early Intervention and Child Care; Health; Employment; and Quality Assurance (housing, recreation, transportation, and other services affecting quality of life). Members may serve on more than one area of emphasis group as their time allows. Alan Cobo-Lewis, Susan Russell, Sandra Horne and one CAC Co-Chair will participate in each group meeting.

CCIDS and the CAC will participate in area of emphasis group meetings during January/February 2023. Each group will meet once for approximately two hours over Zoom. Susan Russell has already started the process of scheduling the largest group first  (Employment).

CCIDS and the CAC will have a joint meeting after all of the area of emphasis groups have met.

CCIDS will prepare the core grant application (the due date is expected to be Spring 2023).

Photo credit: Building corner image by Ben Vaughn (https://unsplash.com)