Funded Projects

MS CDD GRANTS AND CONTRACTS

****AREAS OF EMPHASIS GRANTS – FY2016****

EMPLOYMENT

MS Partnerships in Employment grant from the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AIDD) – Disability Rights Mississippi; $74,410
DRMS’s responsibility within MSPE is to maintain the Employment Workgroup and carrying out its activities.  This group focuses on policies, removing barriers, improving access to competitive employment, and system change efforts.

MS Partnerships in Employment grant from the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities – Institute for Disability Studies; $144,000
IDS’s responsibility within MSPE is the Stakeholder’s Group and carrying out its activities.  The activities include focusing on innovative strategies and best practices for systems improved for competitive employment.  IDS provides knowledge and awareness to MSPE with periodic information sessions presented to the Employment Workgroup and the Consortium while assisting in carrying out various training activities across the State.

Mississippi Council on Developmental Disabilities grants funded through AIDD:

The Employment Connection – O’Keefe Educational Media; $20,000
This project assists people with disabilities in self-employment through providing basic marketing, computer training, financial literacy, and business start-up classes.

Overcoming the Wall to Employment – North MS Regional Center; $48,997
The focus is to develop a Guide/Instructional Manual that contains information and resources NMRC used during the last years of implementation of this project for outreach and awareness of hiring people with developmental disabilities.  The guide will include a list of activities and seminars, a “how-to” when building relationships with policymakers and decision makers, and other topics.

Project SEARCH Southern Miss – Institute for Disability Studies; $70,000
This is an employment training program that includes up to 10 young adults, 18 and older with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities who attend a multi-month training program that consists of daily employment prep skills training and work internships. Upon completion of program, participants will engage in community-based employment interviews and pursue integrated employment.

Farm Entrepreneurship and Independence Initiative – Mileston Cooperative; $70,000
This project continues an employment model of youth inclusiveness in the delta which pairs youth with disabilities and youth without disabilities to train and employ young farmers.  Students are grouped in threes (one with a disability and two without) and acclimated to farming. Students with disabilities are also taught farming techniques to not only provide employment for themselves, but to use their family land to increase their families’ revenue.

Student Transition to Work Program – Warren Yazoo Mental Health; $68,239
This project provides employment preparation and engagement for at least 10 individuals attending Yazoo County and Yazoo City High Schools and young adults (age 18-21) who have their school certificates and are not enrolled in another program.  It also helps transition students who are not enrolled in the waiver programs by the time they exit school to receive VR services while teaching them needed skills for employment.

Competitive Employment – Singing River Services; $26,153
This project is to create a website where people with disabilities can access employment openings at local businesses.  This program will also work on creating apps that users can install on their phones and extend the website into six additional regions of the state.  The goal is to add three new additional employers per region to the online application site.

HEALTH

Holmes Health and Nutrition Program – Wesley Youth Foundation; $50,006
This project continues increasing social activities for students with disabilities, helping them to gain a greater capacity for self-determination through learning leadership skills and conducting peer-exchange activities, and helping to transition into a healthier lifestyle by reducing obesity, hypertension and diabetes.

I Am WELL Aware – Arc of Southeast MS; $25,000
This project continues teaching individuals with DD to promote their own good health by developing community partnerships, building awareness and excitement for healthy living in the community, developing a holistic wellness community within The Arc and increasing awareness, understanding, and response to the health related needs of people with developmental disabilities.

PCIT to Treat Behavioral Problems in Children with Neurodevelopmental Disabilities – (University of Mississippi Medical Center);   $50,000
This project facilitates the certification of three psychologists to obtain Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) which is an effective treatment for children ages 3-7 with behavioral problems.  It is different from ABA in that it teaches caregivers specific behavior management skills through intensive, real-time coaching that emphasizes a positive parent-child relationship.

EDUCATION

Entrepreneurship for Economic Self-Sufficiency – MS Council on Economic Education; $50,000
This project provides training to special education teachers to add Financial Fitness for Life to their classroom curriculum as well as provides trainings to special education teachers on how to implement an entrepreneurship program.

RECREATION

Project STICK – Institute for Disability Studies; $60,000
This project continues enriching the quality of life for people with DD and their support systems through art-based and outdoor recreational activities and adventure therapy.

INFORMAL/FORMAL COMMUNITY SUPPORTS

Region 8 Community Living Support – Region 8 Mental Health Center; $50,000
The grant is for staff training to begin an IDD Community Living Program in Rankin County (Brandon, MS).

Creating a Spectrum of Possibilities – Mississippi State University; $113,266
This project provides behavioral (ABA) and academic services to individuals with DD through weekly, one hour intervention sessions for 30 children, adolescents, and/or emerging adults.  It will also provide service-related training experiences to 13 graduate students and 10 undergraduate students.

Mini-Grants

EMPLOYMENT

Tiger Farms (Ripley High School, South Tippah School District); $9,046
This grant will help to establish a school business with an existing green house.  The project will provide activities that teach the skills students need for the workforce after high school as well as work experience to include on a resume.  Students will also learn money management skills and marketing/sales skills as they sell products from the green house and use the profit to grow the business.  The overall goal is for the students to have the skills and work ethics needed to obtain and keep a job after they exit high school.

Tory’s Treasures (REM Mississippi); $2,375
This project will help an individual to own and operate a home-based business with the product of handcrafted keepsakes that are unique to the state of Mississippi.  The items are two-dimensional, wooden replicas of buildings and accessories that will fit into a person’s hand.

HEALTH

Empowering You (Autism Center of North MS); $10,000
This project is a pilot program aimed at empowering parents and caregivers through education to cultivate a strong commitment to raising healthy kids.  This will be 3 consecutive programs that consist of 2 ½ hour sessions once a week for 4 weeks.  The three main goals are 1) provide education about effective parenting skills from a behavioral approach, 2) conduct psycho-education about emotions, emotional disorders, conduct problems, and psychological issues, and 3) encourage parents to adopt healthy sleep, nutrition, and exercise habits to enhance their own well-being and promote an optimal environment for their child’s success.

Sensory Gym for Children with Special Needs (Performing Arts Center); $10,000
This project provides a sensory gym that is inclusive where all children can have a fun, safe, and sensory friendly environment for therapeutic play while providing tools to help them improve their strength, movement, sensory processing, community, and social interactions.

Tiger Fit (Ripley High School – South Tippah School District); $9,700
The overall goal for this project is to promote healthy living to students that have special needs at Ripley High School.  To accomplish this, the project will provide a time and place for students to exercise, teach the students and parents about healthy habits, teach students how to cook healthy meals, and take students to the Wise Family Farm to learn about how fresh foods are planted and harvested.

TRANSPORTATION

Community Transportation (Madison Co. Citizens Services Agency); $10,000
This project provides transportation to people with developmental disabilities who request the services 24 hours in advance.  It proposes to make transportation service accessible to people with DD in Madison County so that people with DD have access to affordable, professional community transportation services.

**AREAS OF EMPHASIS GRANTS – FY2015 (Contact MSCDD for other details.)**

EMPLOYMENT – These projects are funded by Mississippi Partnerships for Employment of Youth and Young Adults with IDD (MSPE).  MSPE is funded by the U.S. Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Project of National Significance.

Gathering Grounds - Rankin County Schools
Gathering Grounds is a community-based business (coffee/art shop) teaching students transitional work skills in an inclusive, safe environment.  Students will operate the coffee shop featuring original student artwork.  The goal is to provide the extensive job skills training needed in the areas of employability and social skills to reach each student’s goal of competitive, paid employment.

Building Opportunities for Learning and Transition Success (BOLTS) - Oxford School District
BOLTS is intended to increase competitive employment outcomes and/or transition service for youth and young adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities who attend the Oxford School District.  It will be accomplished through the development of on-campus work training opportunities, development of job/career videos or pod casts through digital media, development of a Preparing for Life Transition Planning Guide, providing transition training opportunities, expanding the current array of transition services, and providing hands-on training for future teachers.

Customized Employment:  Linking Job Seekers with Employers – The Arc of Mississippi
This initiative will target three sheltered workshops to begin the process of Customized Employment to link job seekers to community employers.  It will seek to improve the current reimbursement system used by the Home and Community-Based Waiver and work with the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services to contract with sheltered workshops to provide Customized Employment.

EMPLOYMENT (Funded by Council)

Overcoming the Wall by Building a Solid Foundation for Increasing Community Employment for Individuals with IDD – North MS Regional Center
The mission of this proposal is to educate decision-makers of the value and benefits persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities can offer employers through outreach, awareness, and competency exposure.  The focus will be on community businesses, school systems, church administrators, and federal contractors.  Through this exposure, it is anticipated to increase the effectiveness of employment services for individuals with developmental disabilities.

Farm Entrepreneurship and Independence Initiative – Mileston Cooperative
This program will recruit and integrate high school students with disabilities to a youth leadership program which provides on-the-job training in farming and payment for work performed.  The program is inclusive as the students will be assigned to work with two additional students without disabilities.  The initiative will teach students concepts of farming including planting, growing, and harvesting crops as well as cleaning, packaging, and distributing products.

Student Transition to Work Program - Warren-Yazoo Mental Health
The program will provide employment preparation and engagement of students with developmental disabilities who attend Yazoo County High School.  Warren-Yazoo Mental Health will partner with Yazoo County High School and the MS Department of Rehabilitation Services to implement a comprehensive transition model that will provide individualized supports and services for the preparation and engagement of employment activities; integrates person-centered planning in the development of skills discovery, training, and development; and offer opportunities for job discovery, coaching, and integrated work experiences and career skills that lead to gainful employment.

Project SEARCH Southern Miss – The University of Southern Mississippi, Institute for Disability Studies
This employment training program will target 10 young adults ages 18 and older with developmental disabilities.  The program will consist of daily employment preparatory skills training and working internships.  At least three internship opportunities will be provided during the program.  The program will use person-centered planning for all participants in the development of employment-focused goals and internships based upon future employment interests.  In addition to training and internships, participants will have inclusive mentoring experience with USM students and attend a bi-weekly support group focused on the transition to adulthood.  Upon completion of the training program, participants will engage in community-based employment interviews and pursue integrated employment.

Competitive Employment Access Through Technology and Community Partnerships – Singing River Services
This initiative is geared toward an online application process for those who need an alternate route to the standard online application.  Attention to the online process will be brought by media coverage and advertising arranged in cooperation with local businesses.  The media attention will serve as positive pressure for businesses to engage with local ID/DD service providers and as a tool for public awareness and education.

Advancing Transition – New Albany School District
This initiative will provide hand-on experiences to students within the New Albany School District in the area of transition and work experiences.  Students will have job experience at Salvation Army and the local Food Pantry.  They will also be given an opportunity to demonstrate an awareness of comparative shopping concepts such as applicable to personal money management through trips to various department stores.

EDUCATION

Financial Literacy for Economic Self-Sufficiency: 6th- 12th Grade -
MS Council on Economic Education
This program will provide training to special education teachers about how to teach their students about financial literacy. The program will support advocacy and capacity building for the education and early intervention of students with developmental disabilities that need assistance in addressing their substantial functional limitations in learning, capacity for independent living and economic self-sufficiency.

Parent and Teacher Trainings – King Therapies/CREATE Foundation
This initiative is to provide training once a month beginning in March through September on new information on best practices and information learned at the Association of Behavioral Analyst International Autism Conference.  The trainings will be for parents and teachers in North MS.
QUALITY ASSURANCE

Advocacy Team MS –  The University of Southern MS, Institute for Disability Studies
The goal of Advocacy TEAM (Training, Education, and Advocacy Movement) Mississippi is to increase the number of youth and young adult self-advocates with disabilities.  TEAM will re-establish the Mississippi Self-Advocacy Team as an advisory council and provide self-advocacy training.  Self-advocates will provide training in the south, central, and north Mississippi areas.  Twenty-seven secondary schools and three colleges/universities will receive self-advocacy training.

Excellence in Educating Students with Autism – Autism Center of North MS
This is a program that focused on the professional development of the staff at the Autism Center. Every year the Board Certified Behavior Analysts at the Autism Center are required to attend an annual conference to increase their knowledge in the field of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) with the most current research and methodology. The annual conference was one of the only ways that Behavior Analysts can receive the number of continuing education units required to maintain certification and have exposure to the latest developments in the field of ABA. They attended to discover the latest evidence-based practices that can be implemented in the clinic and surround school districts. The Behavior Analysts also developed workshops to provide professional development trainings for educators in the state of Mississippi. Six Behavior Analysts were trained to improve their therapeutic methods and increase their knowledge. They provided parent trainings on how to increase positive social interactions and verbal behavior skills. A workshop was created for educators to address increasing verbal behavior within the classroom setting. These workshops were held in Hattiesburg, Jackson, and Tupelo.

Project PRISM – Autism Center of North MS
This program was designed to provide tutoring services for children diagnosed with autism and/or other developmental disabilities. The program is implemented through one-hour tutoring sessions one to two times a week, depending on the student’s need, for approximately 12-15 students. Students with developmental delays have difficulty acquiring and retaining new skills in a classroom setting. Often during a break from school, these children can lose skills and regress. The program provided one-on-one instruction that will increase the likelihood that skills will be maintained and new skills will be learned. The major goal of the tutoring program was to increase acquisition and retention of reading and math skills for children with developmental disabilities.

HEALTH

Providing Telehealth Services in Rural MS Areas to Children with DD
The University of Mississippi Medical Center
This initiative aims to empower the community health care providers to increase the scope of their services in caring for children with special health care needs in the community including proactive healthcare education and access to developmental specialists through telemedicine.  This initiative is expected to increase access to developmental disability specialty services in these areas via telemedicine by providing a connection between partners for healthcare delivery and wellness education.

I am WELL Aware – The Arc of Southeast Mississippi
This initiative will increase opportunities for individuals with developmental disabilities to live a healthy lifestyle by making health and wellness a priority and teaching them how to make healthier choices food wise and the importance of exercise.  The program will allow children and adults with developmental disabilities to have exposure to intervention programs aimed at promoting physical activity, health, and wellness.  Some activities will include learning to make healthy choices, using health equipment, understanding the importance of healthy decisions for long term benefits, understanding the importance of good hygiene, cooking healthy, creating and reading cookbooks, and measuring ingredients.

Holmes Health and Nutrition Program – Wesley Youth Foundation
This initiative will enhance and support opportunities for high school students in rural communities with developmental disabilities to participate in community functions as active members of society and to reduce instances of obesity among high school students with disabilities.  The program will promote health and wellness by teaching nutrition and weight management to rural high school students with disabilities.  Training inclusively involves students with and without intellectual or physical disabilities and provides sensitivity training on the subjects of disabilities and obesity.

Health, Fitness, and Leisure Education – The University of Southern Mississippi, Institute for Disability Studies
This program will serve adolescents and adults with DD to independently monitor and promote their personal health and fitness-related goals using person-centered recreation. Expected outcomes include improved fitness, increased participation in inclusive recreation, and the capacity assess and monitor personal measures of health, fitness, and leisure activity.

RECREATION

Rolling Recreation – Metro Area Community Empowerment
This program was designed to motivate individuals with disabilities in becoming healthier by providing access to accessible recreation opportunities and enhancing their overall lifestyle.  Through wheelchair basketball, tennis, softball, and fishing activities, at least 165 individuals will have an opportunity to socialize, compete, and engage in a social life.

Project STICK – The University of Southern Mississippi, Institute for Disability Studies
This initiative is a recreational program for individuals with developmental disabilities for children and adults.  Activities include adventure therapy workshops, rope courses, kayaking, and indoor rock climbing along with play day at an accessible playground and support groups for individuals and their caregivers.

PRISM Social Skills Pilot Program – Autism Center of North MS
This multi-faceted program was designed to provide social skills training for children diagnosed with autism and/or other developmental disabilities. This program offered 2-hour social skills sessions once a week for 10 students for 8 weeks at no charge to the parents. Autism Spectrum Disorder often results in underdeveloped social skills required to interact successfully with others. This program used the Teach Town, HELP, and Teaching Theory of Mind programs to foster more appropriate social skills. Not only did the acquisition of these skills help with immediate social situations involving peer relations, but it also helped build the skills needed for individuals with ASD to actively participate in recreational, leisure, and community activities. The program provided these individuals the tools to live more independently, which improves their quality of life while at the same time decreasing the burden of funding placed on the community for caring for these individuals. The program provided group instruction that taught the participants how to build lasting friendships. The major goals of the social skills program portion of Project PRISM were to increase the participants’ ability to develop and maintain friendships and participate in community activities.

**AREAS OF EMPHASIS GRANTS – FY2014 (Contact MSCDD for other details.)**

EMPLOYMENT – Three projects listed below were funded through Mississippi Partnerships for Employment of Youth and Young Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (MSPE).  MSPE is funded by the U.S. Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Project of National Significance.

Gathering Grounds; Rankin County Schools
Gathering Grounds is a community-based business (coffee/art shop) teaching students transitional work skills in an inclusive, safe environment.  Students will operate the coffee shop featuring original student artwork.  The goal is to provide the extensive job skills training needed in the areas of employability and social skills to reach each student’s goal of competitive, paid employment.

Building Opportunities for Learning and Transition Success (BOLTS); Oxford School District
BOLTS is intended to increase competitive employment outcomes and/or transition service for youth and young adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities who attend the Oxford School District.  It will be accomplished through the development of on-campus work training opportunities, development of job/career videos or pod casts through digital media, development of a Preparing for Life Transition Planning Guide, providing transition training opportunities, expanding the current array of transition services, and providing hands-on training for future teachers.

Customized Employment:  Linking Job Seekers with Employer; The Arc of Mississippi
This initiative will target three sheltered workshops to begin the process of Customized Employment to link job seekers to community employers.  It will seek to improve the current reimbursement system used by the Home and Community-Based Waiver and work with the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services to contract with sheltered workshops to provide Customized Employment.

The following grants are funded through MSCDD by the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. They are listed by area of emphasis.

EMPLOYMENT:

Increasing Community Employment; North MS Regional Center
This initiative will educate policy makers of the value and benefits persons with IDD can offer employers through outreach, awareness, and competency exposure.  They will target groups such as school systems, churches, federal contractors, local businesses, and local organizations.

Arrow’s Bottled Creations; Clinton Public School District
The goal of the project is for student’s with developmental disabilities exiting high school to be determined and driven individuals, possess self-advocacy skills, and possess the appropriate employment, social, and independent living skills necessary to be productive members in the community.  Students in this program will benefit from designing, manufacturing, and marketing sand art that they will sell to their peers without disabilities and to the general public thus gaining meaningful employment and independent skills.

Farm Entrepreneurship and Independence Initiative; Community Student Learning Center
The main goal is to recruit and integrate high school students with disabilities to a youth leadership program which provides on-the-job training and payment for work performed in learning how to farm as well as clean, package, store, and distribute produce.

The Employment Connection; Disability Connection
This initiative is designed to develop and test a system to improve employment outcomes for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities.  This program will help eliminate barriers to employment through use of advocacy, community education, employer outreach, individual mentoring, and job matching.

Learning Lab; Singing River Services
This initiative will create a computer lab and purchase software which specifically targets individuals with developmental disabilities to enhance employment opportunities in the community.

EDUCATION

D-BESt; Together Enhancing Autism Awareness in Mississippi (TEAAM)
This initiative was a training offered to parents and professionals in promoting good learning habits among individuals with Autism by understanding behavior and learning styles.  It taught how to pinpoint barriers to learning in the environment and how to eliminate those barriers.

Learning about Autism Spectrum Disorders; SON Valley
This program will provide training to staff of the SON Valley community center who work with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Increasing Accessibility through the Arts; Mississippi Children’s Museum
This program will provide arts-based field trips for students with special needs.  This will provide a 2 hour visit for 350 field trip participants to explore, learn, and have fun at the MS Children’s Museum.

QUALITY ASSURANCE

Advocacy TEAM Mississippi; The University of Southern Mississippi, Institute for Disability Studies
The goal of Advocacy TEAM (Training, Education, and Advocacy Movement) Mississippi is to increase the number of youth and young adult self-advocates with disabilities.  TEAM will re-establish the Mississippi Self-Advocacy Team as an advisory council and provide self-advocacy training.  Self-advocates will provide training in the south, central, and north Mississippi areas.  Twenty-seven secondary schools and three colleges/universities will receive self-advocacy training.

LEAD (Leadership, Empowerment, Advocacy, Determination); Oxford School District
The goal of this project is to educate, inform, train, guide, and empower students to be fully involved in the development of their transition plan, their IEP, as demonstrated through leading and directing their own IEP team meetings.  Activities will include: instruction addressing self-advocacy and self-determination to secondary students with disabilities; providing opportunities for team building and collaboration with others through fun experiences their peers; parent trainings on the various topics surrounding IEPs; opportunities for collaboration between Oxford School District, Special Education Services and University of MS teacher education program; hands-on field training or practicum hours for students enrolled in the University of MS teacher education program; providing those practicum students information about transition services IEP development and importance of self-advocacy; providing peer mentors to gain further training in regards to helping their peers with disabilities as the move towards exiting high school;  and district teachers trainings in regards to self-advocacy and ways to involve students in their IEP meetings.

HEALTH

Providing Telehealth Services in Rural MS Areas to Children with Developmental Disabilities; The University of Mississippi Medical Center
The mission of this project is to focus on access to health care delivery as well as provider and parent education.  It will empower the community healthcare providers to increase the scope of their services for the care of children with developmental disabilities.  Underserved communities will be linked via Telehealth to UMC’s Child Development Specialists and education services, thereby virtually eliminating geographic barriers to improved healthcare delivery.  Services that will be provided include the availability to the families and physicians of healthcare education and access to developmental specialists through telemedicine thus providing a connection between partners for healthcare delivery and wellness education.

Holmes Health and Nutrition Program; Wesley Youth Foundation
This program’s goals are to enhance and support opportunities for high school students in rural communities with developmental disabilities to participate in community functions as active members of society and to reduce obesity among high school students with disabilities.  The program will promote health and wellness by teaching nutrition and weight management to rural high school students with disabilities.  Training will inclusively involve students with and without intellectual or physical disabilities and provide sensitivity training on the subjects of disabilities and obesity.

COMMUNITY SUPPORTS (FORMAL AND INFORMAL)

Community Resource Database; Disability Rights Mississippi
The Community Resource Database will be a tool to assist intake specialists, case managers, and individuals to access accurate information about formal and informal community supports.  This will include a contract with other agencies for the system design and data specialist for collecting, organizing, and inputting data.  The database will be shared with the public and other agencies, resulting in improved knowledge and coordination of community services for individuals with disabilities statewide.  The database can be found at www.mscrd.org

Inclusion for Children with Developmental Disabilities; Northtown Child Development Center
This initiative is to serve as a community training facility.  Caregivers will be able to come directly to the facility and observe the teachers working with children in an inclusive environment.  The intent is to break down teacher’s misconceptions about working with children with disabilities.  The expected outcome is for more children to have access to quality child care and more childcare centers that are willing to accept children with disabilities.  Objectives include: Provide guidance to local childcare centers on how to educate children with disabilities and how to prepare their centers and teachers; provide training, development, and advice on disability awareness and specialized inclusive practice for parents and centers; and provide information, advice, and assistance to local authorities such as childcare licensing agencies, etc.

RECREATION

Rollin’ Recreation; Metro Area Community Empowerment (MACE)
The goal is to bring wheelchair sports to Central and South MS as well as the MS Delta.  This program will serve 22 individuals with DD and other disabilities ages 8-18 in actively participate in one wheelchair basketball tournament and one wheelchair tennis tournament.

TLC Wheelchair Basketball; The University of Southern Mississippi, Technology Learning Center, Institute for Disability Studies
This program provided a week long intense training and developmental rehabilitation experience by creating exposure to and awareness of wheelchair basketball for individuals with developmental disabilities.

 

****AREAS OF EMPHASIS GRANTS – FY2013****

EMPLOYMENTThese projects are funded by Mississippi Partnerships for Employment of Youth and Young Adults with IDD (MSPE).  MSPE is funded by the U.S. Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Project of National Significance.

Gathering Grounds

Project Contact: Julie Paradise, Rankin County School District, julie.paradise@rcsd.ms

Summary: Gathering Grounds is a community-based business (coffee/art shop) teaching students transitional work skills in an inclusive, safe environment.  Students will operate the coffee shop featuring original student artwork.  The goal is to provide the extensive job skills training needed in the areas of employability and social skills to reach each student’s goal of competitive, paid employment.

Building Opportunities for Learning and Transition Success (BOLTS)

Project Contact: Dr. Patricia Austin, Oxford School District, peaustin@oxford.k12.ms.us

Summary: BOLTS is intended to increase competitive employment outcomes and/or transition service for youth and young adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities who attend the Oxford
School District.  It will be accomplished through the development of on-campus work training opportunities, development of job/career videos or pod casts through digital media, development of a Preparing for Life Transition Planning Guide, providing transition training opportunities, expanding the current array of transition services, and providing hands-on training for future teachers.

Customized Employment:  Linking Job Seekers with Employers

Project Contact: Matt Nalker, The Arc of Mississippi, matt@arcms.org

Summary:  This initiative will target three sheltered workshops to begin the process of Customized Employment to link job seekers to community employers.  It will seek to improve the current reimbursement system used by the Home and Community-Based Waiver and work with the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services to contract with sheltered workshops to provide Customized Employment.

Seeking to Expand Employment through Knowledge of the ADA (SEEK ADA)

Project Contact: Christy Dunaway, LIFE of Mississippi, lifeofms@aol.com

Summary: This project is designed to improve employment outcomes for youth and young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Mississippi by educating consumers, family members, service providers, and employers regarding everyone’s rights and responsibilities under Title I (employment) of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

QUALITY ASSURANCE

Advocacy TEAM Mississipp

Project Contact: Royal Walker, Jr., University of Southern Mississippi Institute for Disability Studies, rwalker@ihl.state.ms.us

Summary: The goal of Advocacy TEAM (Training, Education, and Advocacy Movement) Mississippi is to increase the number of youth and young adult self-advocates with disabilities.  TEAM will re-establish the Mississippi Self-Advocacy Team as an advisory council and provide self-advocacy training.  Self-advocates will provide training in the south, central, and north Mississippi areas.  Twenty-seven secondary schools and three colleges/universities will receive self-advocacy training.

PEERS Program

Project Contact: Sharon Boudreaux, Autism Center of Tupelo, sharon@autismcenteroftupelo.com

Summary: The PEERS Program is a 14-week social skills intervention designed to address some of the most devastating social consequences of Autism Spectrum and other developmental
disabilities.  The program is specifically structured to teach participants how to utilize conversational skills, create and expand their social network, diminish effects of negative reputations, conduct recreational get-togethers, and respond appropriately to peer conflict.

CHILD CARE

Mississippi Showcase (Child Care Video)

Project Contact: Dr. Jane Siders, University of Southern Mississippi Institute for Disability Studies, jane.siders@usm.edu

Summary: Mississippi Showcase will highlight best practices of inclusive childcare and Pre-K programs including the use of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) guidelines for early childhood programs developed by the National Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST) and the National Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (NEC-TAC).  The intent is to develop a video that will illustrate how to infuse UDL guidelines into existing childcare and Pre-K programs so that they align with state core standards, early childhood standards, and curriculum guidelines.

HEALTH

Providing Telehealth Services in Rural MS Areas to Children with Developmental Disabilities

Project Contact: Dr. Susan Buttross, University of Mississippi Medical Center, sbuttross@umc.edu

Summary: The mission of this project is to focus on access to health care delivery as well as provider and parent education.  It will empower the community healthcare providers to increase the scope of their
services for the care of children with developmental disabilities.  Underserved communities will be linked via Telehealth to UMC’s Child Development Specialists and education services, thereby virtually eliminating geographic barriers to improved healthcare delivery.  Services that will be provided include the availability to the families and physicians of healthcare education and access to developmental specialists through telemedicine thus providing a connection between partners for healthcare delivery and wellness education.

HOUSING

Together:  A Video about Homeownership

Project Contact: Royal Walker, Jr., University of Southern Mississippi Institute for Disability Studies, rwalker@ihl.state.ms.us

Summary: This project will produce a 20-minute video detailing through personal experiences how individuals with developmental disabilities and their families have become Mississippi homeowners and participating members of their communities. The video also aims to dispel any myths about individuals living independently as homeowners with disabilities.

RECREATION

Adventures for All

Project Contact: Dr. Mark Yeager, TEAAM, dryeager@TEAAM.org

Summary: Adventure for All is an inclusive recreation program to provide fun respite opportunities for participants of all ages.  It is comprised of eight adventure-based, weekend retreat, recreation programs that
offer a variety of fun, adventure-packed activities to 336 individuals.  Participants will be inclusive of an equal number of individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities as well as non-disabled peers.  Activities range from confidence building to socialization in a fun and accepting environment both on and off the campgrounds.

I Can Do All Things

Project Contact: Cindy Pennington, Arc of Southeast MS, cindy.pennington@hattiesburgpsd.com

Summary: I Can Do All Things will provide individuals with a disability an opportunity to be successful in a medium in which they are typically excluded from, community
recreation.  Some activities of recreation will include musical activities ranging from show choir to hand bell choir, organized team sports, dancing, running/walking, and/or fishing.  In addition, regular scheduled social events will include Bunko night, cosmetology classes, and dinner clubs.

COMMUNITY SUPPORTS (FORMAL AND INFORMAL)

Community Resource Database

Project Contact: Ann Maclaine, Disability Rights Mississippi, amaclaine@drms.ms

Summary: The Community Resource Database will be a tool to assist intake specialists, case managers, and individuals to access accurate information about formal and informal community supports.  This will include a contract with other agencies for the system design and data specialist for collecting, organizing, and inputting data. The database will be shared with the public and other agencies, resulting in improved knowledge and coordination of community services for individuals with disabilities statewide.

****CONFERENCE GRANTS – FY2013****

People with Disabilities/Disabled Veterans Job Fair

October 4, 2012, Biloxi Civic Center

Contact: Janie O’Keefe, Office@OKeefeMedia.org

 

MH/IDD Joint Conference

October 24-26, 2012, Biloxi IP Hotel and Casino

Contact: Scott Sumrall, scott.sumrall@dmh.state.ms.us

 

****AREAS OF EMPHASIS GRANTS – FY2012****

EMPLOYMENT

Customized Employment

Project Contact: Nancy Cline, Hudspeth Regional Center, ncline@hrc.state.ms.us

Summary: Customized Employment was one of the first person-centered employment programs implemented in Mississippi.  This program involved intense training, designing and developing program strategies to be implemented state wide.  The outcome was to place six individuals with significant disabilities into community work settings.

RECREATION

Active Through the Arts at the Arc

Project Contact: Cindy Pennington, Arc of Southeast MS, cindy.pennington@hattiesburgpds.com

Summary: Active Through the Arts at the Arc was developed to provide individuals with developmental disabilities and their family access to, use of, and instruction in recreational, leisure, and social activities in their communities.  Supports were developed to enable individuals with developmental disabilities to enjoy full access to and have active participation in community recreation and social activities.

****CONTRACTS – FY2012****

Mississippi Partnerships for Employment (DRMS)

Project Contact: Ann Maclaine, Disability Rights Mississippi, amaclaine@drms.ms

Summary: DRMS leads the Employment Work Group for the Mississippi Partnerships for Employment of Youth and Young Adults with IDD (MSPE).  DRMS annually conducts the required, in-depth policy and programmatic analyses of services and supports funding streams, legal, and policy barriers and eligibility criteria and program requirements and provides recommendations for systems change.

 

Mississippi Partnerships for Employment (IDS)

Project Contact: Royal Walker, Institute for Disability Studies, rwalker@ihl.state.ms.us

Summary: IDS leads the Stakeholders Group for the Mississippi Partnerships for Employment of Youth and Young Adults with IDD (MSPE).  IDS focuses on training and technical assistance needs, identifying best practices, organizational transformation, and reallocation of resources for systems change.  They review employment barriers and strategies to remove barriers and assist with development and dissemination of information regarding systemic barriers via Web, promotional materials, conferences, meetings, or media to influence this change.

RECREATION

TEAAM (Together Enhancing Autism Awareness in Mississippi)

Project Contact: Dr. Mark Yeager, TEAAM, dryeager@TEAAM.org

Summary: This contract was establish to address recreation issues identified in the MS Council on Developmental Disabilities Five Year State Plan.  Activities of the contract include providing family training through a family retreat format to at least 12 families, provide written information describing inclusive recreational options and creative approaches to including themselves in traditional events, providing inclusive recreational activities to a minimum of 200 youth and adults with developmental disabilities through summer programs, and develop a web presences on the website www.KampKaleidoscope.org
helping to provide families and professionals with ideas, facts, and strategies for participation in inclusive recreational activities.

QUALITY ASSURANCE

Advocates Believing in Living Empowered (ABLE)

Project Contact: Nickey Kirkwood, ABLE, shanickeyk@yahoo.com

Summary: This contract was established to address self-advocacy issues identified in the Council on Developmental Disabilities Five Year State Plan.  The goal was to establish a non-profit Self-Advocacy organization that targets and empowers a new generation of self-advocates.  Activities included completing all paperwork necessary to become a non-profit organization, attending the NACDD conference, representing self-advocates on the MSPE Employment Work Group and Stakeholder’s Group.

Mississippi DisAbility MegaConference (Arc of Mississippi)

Project Contact: Matt Nalker, Arc of Mississippi, Matt@arcms.org

Summary: This contact was established to provide stipends for participants and their family to attend the Mississippi DisAbility MegaConference. Expenses included hotel travel and registration fees.

Mississippi DisAbility MegaConference (Disability Rights Mississippi)

Project Contact: Ann Maclaine, Disability Rights Mississippi, amaclaine@drms.ms

Summary: This contract was established to provide funding to host the Mississippi DisAbility MegaConference.  Expenses included hotel usage, conference rooms, speakers, gifts for speakers, food for participants, and print materials.

 

****CONFERENCE GRANTS – FY2012****

9th Annual Central Mississippi Buddy Walk

October 8, 2011, Sparkman Auditorium, MS Ag Museum

Contact: Debra Montgomery, debramont1@gmail.com

IMAGINE…When Possibilities Meet Potentials

October 13-14, 2011, Hilton Hotel, Jackson, MS

Contact: Pam Dollar, pam@mspti.org

Southeast Family Deaf-Blind Transition Institute

January 13-16, 2012, MS School for the Deaf and the MS School for the Blind

Contact: Toni Hollingsworth, deaf-blind@usm.edu

Annual Conference of the National Federation of the Blind of Mississippi

March 30 – April 1, 2012, Hilton Hotel, Jackson, MS

Contact:  Sam Gleese, sgleese@city.jackson.ms.us

13th Annual Conf. on Alzheimer’s Disease and Psychiatric Disorders in the Elderly

August 15-17, 2012, Whispering Woods Conference Center, Olive Branch, MS

Contact: Kathy VanCleave, kathy.vancleave@dmh.state.ms.us