Real change starts at the grassroots!
That’s why we’re proud to partner with hundreds of disability-focused organizations through our Nonprofit Partnership Program, spreading awareness and knowledge regarding disability communities and initiatives for a more inclusive world. Last month we recognized ADHD focused organizations, and this month we are excited to feature 5 new organizations that we connected with that are making a real change:
National Center for Learning Disabilities
Mission: The National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of individuals with learning disabilities. Through advocacy, awareness, and valuable resources, our work fosters support and promotes inclusive practices for those with learning disabilities and their families. NCLD conducts research and collaborates with educators, policymakers, parents, and students to shape effective policies, and innovative educational approaches and empower individuals to reach their full potential.
Partnership Takeaways: For more than 45 years, NCLD’s dedicated team has led advocacy involving their community. Recently, almost 60 young adults who have learning disabilities or attention issues, spoke to representatives and senators across both sides of Congress about the state of public education, university systems, and workforce transition. Hear more from our Spotlight Session with NCLD’s CEO Jacqueline Rodriguez.
Madison House Autism Foundation
Mission: Madison House Autism Foundation (MHAF) promotes, models, and advocates for the full inclusion of adults with autism and their families in the life of their communities. MHAF works to expand choice and opportunity in housing, employment, and social participation.
Partnership Takeaways: MHAF creates engaging resources to raise awareness and advocate for the expansion of opportunities for people on the autistic spectrum across the country. We learned that after autistic individuals turn 21, they lose access to the support that helps them navigate and make sense of the world. This year, 50,000 children with autism will transition into adulthood, that’s enough people to fill over 900 school buses. This has a direct impact on the autistic community and millions more due to insufficient housing, employment, healthcare, education, and community. Last week, MHAF released an exciting pilot project in coordination with families, policymakers, and organizations across Utah.
BluePath Service Dogs
Mission: BluePath places service dogs with children with autism, helping to ameliorate dangerous wandering behaviors. Beyond unparalleled safety, BluePath dogs reduce stress in transitions, facilitate connection, and often become a child’s best friend.
Partnership Takeaways: BluePath shared with us the power of animals to create deep connections and a grounding presence in times of sensory overstimulation or extreme anxiety. This can be especially beneficial for children where verbal language isn’t necessary. In the spotlight session with Michelle Brier, BluePath’s Executive Director she shares memorable experiences about the dogs’ training graduation ceremony and how it impacts the lives of the many people involved.
The Traveling Gnomes
Mission: The Traveling Gnomes is a disability travel organization that plans and executes inclusive and accessible day trips and overnight trips alongside and for individuals with neurodiversity and disabilities. Within our programming, Travelers will navigate new communities, practice flexibility, deepen relationships, and strengthen self-advocating while exploring the state of Colorado and beyond.
Partnership Takeaways: We gained a renewed appreciation for adventure with The Traveling Gnomes. Their travelers and trailblazers organize new experiences that cater to their community’s ability while still creating space for new experiences. Travel is not only fun, it helps create more independence and encourages confidence from participants.
Mission: Avivo serves more than 11,000 diverse individuals across Minnesota each year. Avivo works to increase the individual’s well-being through recovery and career advancement, while also working to end homelessness.
Partnership Takeaways: The team at Avivo takes a holistic approach to serving individuals and families in Minnesota and showed us what “it takes a village” really means. We were impressed to learn about the team’s diversity and commitment to inclusion, which helps them support their community members who face complex barriers – poverty, homelessness, unemployment, chemical addiction, or mental health concerns – to achieve recovery and economic stability.
While each of our partners' missions and communities is different, they all work towards a common goal of inclusivity and accessibility. We believe that by working together, we can make the world a more accessible place!
Are you part of a not-for-profit organization making a change for disability communities? Check out our Nonprofit Partnership Program today.