Free Training for Maine Faith Communities: Creating a More Inclusive and Welcoming Environment


A free 1-hour training offered virtually or in-person for your faith community to learn more about the needs of people with disabilities and how to best serve them. The content of this web page can be downloaded as a separate flyer for each of the following faith communities: Christian, Jewish or Muslim.


Among people in Maine under age 65, 11.6 percent have a disability — a rate of 1.3 times the national average of 8.7 percent (U.S. Census Bureau, 2018). The University of Maine Center for Community  Inclusion and Disability Studies is Maine’s University  Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities  (UCEDD). We specialize in evidence-based best practices across the lifespan.

Who Should Attend?

This training is appropriate for clergy and lay people with and without disabilities; guardians, family members, and allies of people with disabilities; and anyone who is interested in creating a more inclusive and welcoming environment for everyone.


This training course can be scheduled at a convenient time for your group between now and December 31, 2024.

Some steps to take to help promote inclusion and fuller participation of people with disabilities in your faith community:

  • Modify the worship setting to create a more welcoming environment for everyone.
  • Practice using plain language when developing materials for worship, religious observances, youth/adult groups or other activities.
  • Encourage and support those with learning differences to take a more active role in the rituals and routines of your house of worship.
  • Look for the strengths in and respect the sensory differences of people who are neurodiverse (on the autism spectrum, ADHD, etc.).


Kimberly MillsKimberly Mills, Ph.D., BCBA-D
Dr. Mills is an international expert in developmental disabilities, educational training, and program development. She has a special interest in spirituality and would like to increase access and inclusion for people with disabilities in their faith communities.
(352) 201-6322 (V)

This training was developed by Dr. Kimberly Mills in partnership with the University of Maine Center for Community Inclusion and Disability Studies through the 2023/2024 “Innovation Pilots – RFP to Stimulate Independence Promoting Innovation” initiative. This project was funded through the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP)/American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) dollars through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) under Section 9817 Home and Community Based Services (HCBS). All products of this initiative are freely available for public use.

Image credits:
Illustration credit: LuckyTD ( Standard License
Photo of Kimberly Mills courtesy of Kimberly Mills