Using Social Media to Enhance Community Participation

Using Social Media to Enhance Community Participation
Source: Temple Collaborative on Community Inclusion
Looking for ways to be more active in your community? This manual examines ways in which individuals with mental illnesses can use social media networks to enhance community participation. Social media features and functions are examined as well as specific networks such as: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, MeetUp, and Yelp. Also reviewed are considerations and risks when using social media. Produced by Temple Collaborative on Community Inclusion

Mathematica Policy Research: Transition Strategies for Youth with Disabilities

Transition Strategies for Youth with Disabilities
Mathematica Policy Research has released three new reports on how transition services are being used for youth with disabilities. The goal of these services is to help youth with disabilities-particularly those receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI)- find employment and earn higher wages. Mathematica’s reports focus on which services are the most promising according to the current base of evidence.

Guided Group Discovery: Online Participant Workbook for Employment

Online Participant Workbook
Guided Group Discovery assists job seekers who face barriers to employment in identifying jobs that would be a good fit for them and an employer. The LEAD Center released the Guided Group Discovery Online Participant Workbook to help these job seekers in their search. This user-friendly tool allows youth and adults to create a personalized Blueprint for Employment. Each participant receives a private link that allows them to add to, edit, or review their information at any time. The Workbook can also be printed out to review with counselors, teachers, and others. The Online Participant Workbook is a companion piece to a suite of LEAD Center resources for Guided Group Discovery.

Securing rights and nutritional health for persons with intellectual disabilities – a pressing challenge | Food & Nutrition Research

Source: Securing rights and nutritional health for persons with intellectual disabilities – a pressing challenge | Food & Nutrition Research

Svein Olav Kolset Sigrun Hope Kjetil Retterstøl Marianne Nordstrøm Per Ole Iversen


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Persons with intellectual disabilities (ID) are dependent on nutritional policies that have so far not been addressed in a systematic and health-promoting manner in Norway and other nations with a high socioeconomic standard. In many poor countries, such issues have not even been raised nor addressed. Nutritional issues facing persons with ID include the risk of both underweight and overweight. Deficiency in energy, vitamins, essential fatty acids and micronutrients can increase the risk of additional health burdens in already highly vulnerable individuals. According to the World Health Organization, the obesity rates have tripled worldwide the last decades, and recent studies suggest that the prevalence of obesity is even higher for persons with ID than in the general population. This implies additional burdens of life style diseases such as diabetes and hypertension for adults with ID. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM)-5, this group is characterized by intellectual difficulties as well as difficulties in conceptual, social, and practical areas of living. Their reduced intellectual capacity implies that they often have difficulties in making good dietary choices. As a group, they are dependent upon help and guidance to promote a healthy life style. To improve their health, there is a need for improved national services and for more research on lifestyle and nutritional issues in persons with ID. From a human rights perspective, these issues must be put on the agenda both in relevant UN fora and in the respective nations’ health policies.

Keywords: Intellectual disabilities; Nutrition; Health; Obesity; Staff nutritional competence; Specific syndromes; Nutritional policies

Introducing Active Engagement: A new program for teaching cooking skills to individuals with IDD – Webinar

Source: Introducing Active Engagement: A new program for teaching cooking skills to individuals with IDD

Presented by Janice Goldschmidt, MS, RD, LDN

Content Overview:

This presentation will launch a book that will be published by AAIDD in June. The title is Active Engagement: Teaching Authentic Cooking Skills to Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. Janice Goldschmidt, the author, will provide an overview of the book that draws on the evidence-based structure of the program as well as the philosophical foundation. A Registered Dietitian and experienced IDD practitioner, Ms. Goldschmidt has spent the last decade working with individuals with disabilities on the development of cooking skills as a form of nutritional intervention and as a way of teaching practical skills to promote independence and self-determination. The presentation will include a brief discussion of some of the epidemiological trends for the IDD population and how development of cooking capacity can help mitigate some of the health-related pathologies associated with the high rates of obesity. The conceptual framework for the program will be introduced, and the author will explain how the emphasis on choice and individualization make Active Engagement very different from traditional cooking programs for the IDD population. Introductory teaching activities using adaptive tools will be addressed, as well as important steps needed to adapt recipes for those with IDD. Food skills, activities that support cooking but that are not directly related, will also be introduced as another means of drawing individuals with IDD into the realm of food preparation.

It is anticipated that this introductory tour of Active Engagement will help caregivers, support staff, educators, and practitioners from a wide range of disciplines develop an understanding of how this new book can be incorporated into programs or activities. At the close of the presentation, the author will take questions and offer problem-solving suggestions in response to specific issues that participants have experienced.

This is an AAIDD webinar. 

State Employment First Policies: Research to Practice State

This brief is the first in a series focusing on Employment First implementation as it relates to one of the seven elements within the High-Performing States in Integrated Employment model1. It examines the background of circumstances under which Employment First efforts began in seven states, and introduces each state’s values, mission, and goals around increasing employment opportunities for people with disabilities. States may use the lessons in this brief to develop an Employment First policy, or to evolve existing efforts.

Download State Definitions, Goals, and Values By Jennifer Bose and Jean E. Winsor

Source: ThinkWork 

ThinkWork is a research and training center focused on advancing employment for individuals with intellectual/ developmental disabilities (IDD). ThinkWork has published this brief as the first in a series of briefs on the implementation of Employment First policies. The principles of Employment First state that individuals with IDD can perform work, should should be paid at minimum or prevailing wage rates for this work, and that providing work-specific supports should be the top support priority.

Promoting Better Health Beyond Health Care

State-level multi-sector actions for addressing the social, economic, and environmental factors that impact health

May 2018

As part of their Better Health Beyond Health Care initiative, the Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) conducted a national analysis on innovative ways to promote health. This report discusses the resulting findings and summarizes information from thirty key informant interviews representing programs in 19 states and a small group convening. It explores ways collaboration and cross-sector partnerships can help promote population health and improve outcomes.
Source: Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) 

National experts and state policymakers increasingly recognize that health outcomes are influenced not only by providing access to health care coverage and services, but also by state level policies in non-health sectors, such as agriculture, education, and transportation, among others. The Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS), with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, conducted a national exploration of state-level strategies to promote health beyond the traditional health care levers. Through review of published and gray literature, interviews with state officials and relevant subject matter experts, in-depth site visits, and a small group convening, CHCS aimed to answer key questions, including: 1. What are the levers across state agencies that could be used to improve population health, either through specific policy action or by exerting state influence? 2. What are examples of diverse state agencies working together and with other community partners to improve population health? 3. What are the key factors necessary to promote effective cross-sector collaborations? 4. What types of technical assistance and facilitation would increase states’ capacity to pursue and successfully implement these actions? 5. How might state-level assistance be targeted to support and scale similar innovation? Following is a summary of key takeaways from this exploration, organized according to: (1) precursors, or foundational factors that help to prime the environment for state action; (2) catalysts that initiate and advance coordination among diverse state agencies; and (3) success factors for effective implementation and ongoing collaboration.

Mental Health-related Physician Office Visits by Adults Aged 18 and Over: United States, 2012–2014

Source: Products – Data Briefs – Number 311 – June 2018

Key findings

Data from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey

  • Among adults aged 18 and over, the rate of mental health-related physician office visits to psychiatrists (693 per 10,000 adults) was higher compared with the rate to primary care physicians overall (397 per 10,000 adults), and for all age groups except 65 and over.
  • For both men and women, the rate of mental health-related office visits to psychiatrists was higher compared with visits to primary care physicians.
  • The percentage of mental health-related office visits to psychiatrists compared with primary care physicians was lower in rural areas, but higher in large metropolitan areas.
  • For all primary expected sources of payment except Medicare, a higher percentage of mental health-related office visits were to psychiatrists rather than to primary care physicians.

In 2016, mental illness affected about 45 million U.S. adults (1). Although mental health-related office visits are often made to psychiatrists (2), primary care physicians can serve as the main source of treatment for patients with mental health issues (3); however, availability of provider type may vary by geographic region (3,4). This report uses data from the 2012–2014 National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NAMCS) to examine adult mental health-related physician office visits by specialty and selected patient characteristics.

Family Leisure Toolkit | Parents with Mental Illnesses

Leisure participation is important for the development of healthy family relationships.

Source: Family Leisure Toolkit | Parents with Mental Illnesses

Leisure Education Toolkit for Parents with Mental Illnesses


This toolkit is an evidence-based guide that will help parents better understand the importance of family leisure and develop strategies to participate in meaningful family leisure. Research on the need for family leisure, potential benefits, and strategies to increase participation are presented. This user friendly guide provides worksheets and activities that parents can use with their children to make the most out of family leisure. For individuals who want to receive additional support, each section also provides an opportunity to summarize goals and issues that can be shared with a mental health professional. Download now to learn more about: (1) the benefits of family leisure; (2) core and balance family leisure; (3) strategies to assess family leisure interest; (4) barriers to and facilitators of family leisure; (5) planning and making time for family leisure; and (6) using leisure to talk with your kids about mental illnesses.