vody/> RCM - Revitalizing Community Membership: Empowering Independence: August 2018

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Home and Community Based Services Conference

Mr. Robert Kennedy presenting on a panel about self advocacy at the Home and Community Based Services Conference in Baltimore yesterday. Thanks Robert for your advocacy.


Are ABLE Accounts Unsustainable? | M&L Special Needs Planning

The Able Adjustment Act could bring stability

The ABLE account is an excellent tool for individuals with disabilities to save for the future while living full, rewarding, financially secure lives. As a special needs planning company, we have written quite frequently on the ABLE account and the ways in which we feel it is a beneficial addition to the special needs planning toolkit.

In the event that you haven’t yet familiarized yourself with the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) account, here is a quick rundown: the ABLE account allows individuals with disabilities to open special savings accounts for disability-related expenses. The account is modeled off of the already existing 529 college savings accounts, and ensures that all funds in this account can grow tax free as long as the funds are used for qualifying, disability-related expenses (as approved under regulations). For a more detailed description of the ABLE account, follow this link or check out or ABLE account blog archive.

To read more on this story, click here: Are ABLE Accounts Unsustainable? | M&L Special Needs Planning


Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Next Chapter Book Club

It was a successful first meeting of the Next Chapter Book Club (RCM affiliate chapter) at Peet's Coffee on 1st St. NE in DC!


Becoming A Better Citizen (Civic Engagement) - September 26 (12 PM - 1 PM)

Join us for our 'Lunch & Learn' focusing on civic engagement and your role and duties as a citizen. Learn simple ways you can exercise your rights to better your community! Presented by Amy Brooks, CEO of RCM of Washington & Robert Kennedy, self-advocate. DSP's and RCM managers will receive Phase 4 continuing education credit for attending. Pizza will be served.

Event: Becoming A Better Citizen (Civic Engagement)

Date: Wednesday, September 26 

Time:  12 PM - 1 PM

RCM of Washington Inc
64 New York Avenue, 
Washington, District of Columbia 20002

Please Share!


Saturday, August 25, 2018

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Introducing Amy Brooks, In Her Own Words!

We continue our series by introducing you to another member of our Board of Representatives: Amy Brooks! Ms. Brooks is the CEO of RCM of Washington. Here's an excerpt from our conversation.

Could you tell me a little bit about your background and journey into the I/DD field?

As many people, I happened into this field quite by accident. I took a position as an office manager and I fell in love with the people. I immediately knew this could be my life’s work and passion and love of the field has just grown over the years. In 1998 there was the opportunity to take over a small turnkey operation in the District and I was young and naïve, so I dove right in and grew the organization over the years. We just celebrated our 20-year anniversary and we support people and families in an array of residential, community-based day services, and employment services.

To read more on this story, click here: Introducing Amy Brooks, In Her Own Words!


Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Showcase Your Artistic Talent and Commitment to Disability Rights and Inclusion by Participating in the Inaugural USICD Poster Contest

Share your talent!

USICD invites you to showcase your artistic talent and commitment to disability rights and inclusion by participating in the inaugural USICD Poster Contest. This poster contest helps us to raise awareness about international disability rights issues.

The winner will receive $300.00, a USICD swag bag filled with USICD merchandise and their poster featured during the annual USICD Gala to celebrate the International Day of Persons with Disabilities and other 2018-2019 events. Click the below links to read the contest details and print the release form that must accompany your submitted artwork. 

Click here for: USICD Poster Contest Details 

Click here for: Poster Contest Release Form 

Please share!


Can You Spare A Minute To Help Amy Brooks?

Help address our workforce crisis

Establish a Direct Support Professional Standard Occupational Classification

Although people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) are often referred to as the “most vulnerable” in our population, over the past 20 years many have been fully participating in their communities, living in integrated settings, and seeking meaningful employment. Much of this progress can be attributed to the tireless work of roughly 1.3 million Direct Support Professionals, who wear numerous hats providing medical support, advancing community inclusion, facilitating services, providing emotional support, ensuring health and safety, and much, much more. Despite this unique and critical skill set, Direct Support Professionals receive an average hourly wage of just $10.72 per hour – well below the federal poverty level for a family of four.

To read more on this story, click here: Can You Spare A Minute To Help Amy Brooks?


Sunday, August 12, 2018

University of Maryland Announces New Center for Students with Disabilities

A new center at the University of Maryland that was unveiled Monday will help young people with disabilities as they move from an educational setting into the workforce.

The Center for Transition and Career Innovation for Youth With Disabilities will be housed at Maryland’s College of Education and directed by two researchers, according to a news release.

“We know what it takes to help students with disabilities become successful as adults,” said Richard Luecking, one of the researchers involved in the center. “We just don’t know how to apply it universally, to all students, with any disability. The center will be able to understand the circumstances where we could make that happen, across the board.”

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) and the university on Monday announced the creation of the center, which is expected to serve those with physical and intellectual disabilities.

To read more on this story, click here: University of Maryland Announces New Center for Students with Disabilities


RCM of Washington Summer 2018 Newsletter

See what RCM has coming up this summer! And if you'd like to join our mailing list, please send us a private message with your email address. To send your email, click HERE


Friday, August 10, 2018

Come Join Us For Our August 'Lunch & Learn' (Evening Session) to Gain Insight Into the Psyche of Teenagers, August 27th

Join our August 'Lunch & Learn' (evening session) to gain insight into the psyche of teenagers. 

Event: 'Lunch & Learn' (Evening Session) to Gain Insight Into the Psyche of Teenagers

Date: Monday, August 27, 2018

Time: 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Location: 64 New York Avenue, Washington, District of Columbia 20002

This session will be presented by ESPYR Employee Assistance Program. You'll learn how you can best support teens and young adults to grow into successful, independent people. This session is not only helpful for parents of teens, but also for those working with young adults. 

RCM DSP's and managers will earn Phase 4 credits for continued education. Remember, DSP's that attend 7 of 11 'Lunch and Learn' sessions are eligible to win a $100 gift certificate! 

Pizza will be served!

This event is open to the public, so please invite family and friends. RSVP at (202) 789-1930 x135

To Sign Up on Facebook, click here: Parenting Your Teen 


Sunday, August 5, 2018

Charlie Performing with Zander on Sax

Check out Charlie performing with Zander on sax at Republic in Takoma Park! We hear they drew in quite the crowd! 

Click on video arrow twice.


Smithsonian Puts Spotlight On Special Olympics

With a new exhibit, the Smithsonian Institution is highlighting how athletics have helped to dramatically change the lives of people with intellectual disabilities over the last 50 years.

The display “Special Olympics at 50” was unveiled this month at the National Museum of American History in Washington just as the international sporting movement is celebrating a half-century.

“Founded at a time when people with intellectual disabilities (ID) were often institutionalized or hidden away, Special Olympics changed attitudes about the abilities and talents of children and adults with ID — giving them the chance to train their bodies, build confidence, meet new people and share skills through sports,” the Smithsonian said.

To read more on this story, click here: Smithsonian Puts Spotlight On Special Olympics


RCM of Washington Inc., Supporting Thelma Greene in the Closing Plenary

DC in the house supporting Thelma Greene in the closing Plenary at Reinventing Quality 2018, at Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel, July 31, 2018


Wishing a Very Special Happy Birthday to Doris Goins!

Wishing a “Happy 83rd Birthday” to a very special lady in my life, Doris Goins. As you have probably heard me say before, Ms. Goins was my brother, Robert, who was born with special needs, nurse for over 15 years. At age 83-years-young, she is still a full-time nurse. This picture was taken on April 28, 2018, at RCM’s 20th Anniversary Party at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center. She is definitely my inspiration. I want to say, happy birthday, and thanks for all that you do. We love you!
~Blog Administrator, Barona Whiteing-Green~


Big Brother Gets Tattoo Of Little Brother With Down's Syndrome On Arm, He Absolutely Loves It

We all know a set of siblings who are at each other's throat at any opportunity possible - but maybe things would be different if they had a quick look at this video.

Because this young man with Down's syndrome reacted in the most amazing way when he saw his older brother's tattoo for the first time. We think he definitely approves of it, that's for sure.

The tattoo was of the LAD's face inside the mouth of a lion and he couldn't believe it as he ran his hand across his brother's arm before giving him a kiss and an affectionate hug.

Someone chopping onions in here? Or just me?

To read more on this story, click here: Big Brother Gets Tattoo Of Little Brother With Down's Syndrome On Arm, He Absolutely Loves It


Thursday, August 2, 2018

"Resistance and Hope: Essays by Disabled People"

Alice Wong‎ to Disability Visibility Project

Hello friends! I am excited to share with you the first-ever publication by the Disability Visibility Project, "Resistance and Hope: Essays by Disabled People." It will be available on October 15, 2018 in multiple formats including audio. You can pre-order the anthology now on Amazon: 

For more details the about Resistance and Hope, the contributors, the team that put it together, and advance praise for the anthology: https://disabilityvisibilityproject.com/resist/

You can read and listen to a sneak preview of the book here:

Many thanks to Robin Eames, Editorial Assistant and Micah Bazantt for the beautiful book cover.

Thank you to Rosalie Morales Kearns, S. E. Smith, Corbett OToole  for their advice and wordsmithing.

Appreciation to Cheryl Green for her PDF accessibility wizardy!

Image description: On the left side is an illustration by artist Micah Bazant featuring a midnight blue sky with little white stars. Below is a log with mushrooms growing out of it in multiple shapes and colors. “Text reads: Resistance & Hope, Essays by Disabled People, Crip Wisdom for the People, Edited by Alice Wong, Disability Visibility Project.” The ‘o’ in ‘Hope’ looks like a full moon. On the right is white text against a black background that reads: “Resistance and Hope: Essays by Disabled People, Available October 15, 2018

Pre-order now on Amazon.com 

For more about the anthology: 
https://disabilityvisibilityproject.com/resist/ #ResistanceAndHope”


Getting Ahead Helps Those in High-Stress Jobs Deal with Struggles

The Blade wrote about Sunshine Communities and others' development of a new resource for DSPs: Getting Ahead In The Workplace! Great job, and great read!

After almost three years at Sunshine Communities in Maumee, Toni Hazen-Mansfield, who wears close to a buzz cut, occasionally wants to pull what little hair she has out of her head at the end of a long workday.

A support center for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities, Sunshine’s staff members occasionally deal with crises when individuals become aggressive or when “things go haywire,” said Mrs. Hazen-Mansfield, 24, of Bowling Green,

“Things ... normally can go from zero to 100 real quick,” she said. “[But] I love my job. It doesn't scare me.”

It’s a job that Mrs. Hazen-Mansfield arrived at via a circuitous route.

When she was 11, she began caring for her ill father while her mother worked full time. 

Despite the balance of finishing homework, caring for her father, and helping her mother lead the household, she graduated valedictorian from Jackson-Milton High School in North Jackson, Ohio, receiving a full-ride scholarship to Youngstown State University.

To read more on this story, click here: Getting Ahead Helps Those in High-Stress Jobs Deal with Struggles 


Emerging Leaders at the DDS Leadership Meeting

Check out some of the Emerging Leaders at the DDS leadership meeting  on July 26, presenting on their collaboration with Georgetown Medical Students! Way to go Barry, TJ and Derrick!

Click on video arrow twice.


Direct Support Workers In Short Supply As Demand Surges

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The commercial lasts less than a minute. Time enough, Ben Young hopes, for viewers to see what he needs and to imagine what he can give.

“Come change my life,” Young says in a computer-generated voice. “I promise it will change yours forever. Help me help myself.”

The pitch, from a bright and determined young man who can neither feed nor dress himself, or even speak clearly without aid of technology, is part of a statewide campaign to recruit the workers known as “direct support professionals.” The well-being of Young and tens of thousands of other Ohioans with developmental disabilities turns on the availability of competent and reliable support providers.

But the pool has gone frighteningly shallow.

Companies and nonprofit agencies that offer care and support to people with disabilities say they are struggling more than ever to attract workers, forcing some to terminate services and decline new clients. Parents go without sleep and take leave from their jobs to fill in. Adults and children with disabilities become frustrated, confused or upset at the churn of names and faces and routines.

“We have a workforce crisis on our hands that is of mammoth proportions,” said Mark Davis, president of the Ohio Provider Resource Association.

To read more on this story, click here: Direct Support Workers In Short Supply As Demand Surges


twitter twi