Because Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, Enjoy these fun activities and ideas!



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e-NEWS February 4, 2009
Dear Family and Friends,
In our February issue of Community Connections we have many new resources, upcoming trainings and recreational activities to share with you.
Because Valentine’s Day is fast approaching,

Enjoy these fun activities and ideas!









  • Heart in Hand Valentine Card

  • Valentine’s Day Family Projects

  • Valentine’s Day Bingo

  • Valentine’s Day Printables

Home of Guiding Hands invites you to Create a Plan for a Better Tomorrow by attending a series of six workshops for parents and relatives of people with developmental disabilities or other challenges. In the Life Planning Project you will create your own detailed plan for your family members’ future. The TWO HOUR sessions will be held on: Friday mornings from 10am – 12pm at the San Diego Regional Center, 512 West Aten Road, Imperial, CA 92251. View flyer.

HGH le invita a unir con nosotros a Crear un Plan para un Futuro Mejor. Una serie de seis talleres para padres y familia quienes cuidan a una persona discapacitada o con otra necesidad especial. Crear su propio plan detallado para el futuro de su miembro de familia. Las sesiones de DOS HORAS se hacen: Jueves por la mañana de 10am a 12pm o Jueves por la noche de 6pm a 8pm. Lugar: San Diego Regional Center, 512 West Aten Road, Imperial, CA 92251. Para más información, Vea el Volante.

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UPCOMING EVENTS:

For event details go to http://www.efrconline.org/calendar/maincal.cfm

By clicking on an Event link you may view the event details.
Local:

2/5/09 Bullying Prevention: What Works

2/10/09 AAC Implementation: How to Get Kids Really Talking

2/12-13/09 Fair Housing Conference

2/16/09 Basic Rights

2/17/09 Wrightslaw Special Education Law and Advocacy Conference

2/19/09 Creative Behavior Management

2/19/09 Assessment Process (Spanish)

2/19/09 2009 Diversity Day Fair - San Diego

2/20/09 Planeación de Vida / Life Planning - Imperial

2/25/09 Assistive Technology

2/26/09 Self Control

2/26-27/09 Beyond Traditional Job Development

2/27/09 2009 Diversity Day Fair - Vista

3/4/09 al Desarrollo del Habla y Lenguaje

3/10/09 Tax & Financial Awareness – Balboa Park

3/12/09 Medication Update - Answers to the most commonly asked


questions about medication used to treat ADHD, anxiety

and/or depression in children & teenagers

3/18/09 National Conference on Inclusion: Innovative strategies

for including all children in out-of-school time programs

3/20/09 5th Annual Legislative Breakfast with Tony & Alicia Gwynn

4/18/09 DSA Annual Dinner Dance – Mission Valley

5/9-10/09 19th Annual Self Advocacy Conference – Mission Valley

5/30/09 26th Annual Involved Exceptional Parents’ Day Conference



Regional:

2/25-28/09 Learning Disabilities Association 46th Annual International Conference - Salt Lake City
2/27-3/1/09 Quality Care For All Children: Future Of Pediatrics Conference - Anaheim
5/15-16/09 DSAOC Second Annual Conference
7/31-8/2/09 37th National Down Syndrome Congress National Convention - Sacramento, CA. Youth & Adults Presenter Opportunities available for this event.
ONLINE WORKSHOPS/WEBINARS:

2/18/09 "Students with Disabilities in Foster Care: What Special Education Advocates Need to Know" webinar 2:00 - 3:30 EST

http://www.advocacyinstitute.org/shop/webinars.html

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UPCOMING EFRC SUPPORT GROUPS:

A detailed listing of all local Disability-Related Support Groups can be found at http://www.efrconline.org/efrc.cfm?pid=Support_Groups



(click on underlined Title for details)
2/06/09 Grupo de Apoyo 0-5

2/09/09 Grupo de Apoyo de Autismo

2/10/09 Down Syndrome Support - North County

2/11/09 Parent Support

2/18/09 Autism Support

2/18/09 Grupo de Apoyo Imperial

2/19/09 Down Syndrome Support– Imperial County

2/19/09 Down Syndrome Support – Central San Diego

2/26/09 Síndrome de Down Apoyo - Español

2/27/09 Grupo de Apoyo 5+


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ADVOCACY:


San Diego People First Chapter Meetings are held on the 2nd Saturday of every month from 10:00am to 12:30pm at the Balboa Park Club in Balboa Park. Chapter meetings are open to self-advocates, parents, and support staff. Doughnuts and coffee are served before the meeting for fifty cents each. Lunch follows the meeting and costs $4.50. Educational presentations are made during the meetings. More information can be found at http://www.sandiegopeoplefirst.com

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SPECIAL EDUCATION:
Did you know that 56% of those who responded to our last online poll said that they did not know about the Community Advisory Committee for Special Education?

The Community Advisory Committee for Special Education is composed of volunteers, including parents of individuals with exceptional needs enrolled in public and private schools, parents of other students enrolled in school, pupils and adults with disabilities, general and special education teachers, other school district personnel, representatives of other public and private agencies, and others concerned with the needs of individuals with exceptional needs. Each school district has its own CAC and their monthly meetings are open to the public. Meeting information can be found at http://www.efrconline.org/admin/files/Community%20Advisory%20Committee%20Special%20Education.doc


2/5/09 San Diego Unified School District Town Hall Meeting

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RESOURCES:
Surgeon General's New Family Health History Tool

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released an updated


and improved version of the Surgeon General's internet-based family health history tool. The new tool makes it easier for patients to assemble and share family health history and can also help practitioners make better use of health history information. For more information, visit http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2009pres/01/20090113a.html

DVD Teaches Kids with Autism What a Smile Means

A new DVD teaches autistic children how to recognize emotions like happiness, anger and sadness through the exploits of eight track-based vehicles. The vehicles have human faces grafted onto them, making focusing on human features unavoidable. The video was financed by the British government. Read the full article at


http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090115/ap_on_re_eu/eu_med_autism_video. DVD information can be found at http://www.thetransporters.com (Half of the profits go to autism charities and research).

Plans Are Our Safety Net

Read this article about a family who has four children, with the youngest child (15 years old) having autism. The parents describe the importance of planning. They explain their expectations, goals, master plan and contingency plans. They connect their plans and expected outcomes for Justin with his “functional” IEP goals. View article at http://www.fetaweb.com/success/plan.laura.steve.htm


Safety Tip -- 511 Roadside Assistance

Are you aware that, if you have car trouble on any San Diego freeway or highway, you can make a free cell phone call to 511 to obtain roadside assistance? This quick connection to the 'Mobile Callbox' is just one of the free travel-related services provided by SANDAG's state-of-the-art 511



traveler information service that is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. http://www.511sd.com

Proyecto Visión is a project to connect Latinos with disabilities to employment opportunities. Its bilingual web site provides information on education, employment, and independent living resources and lists hundreds of job, scholarship, internship, grant, award, and other educational opportunities of interest to Latinos and students with disabilities. The website is frequently updated with information about new opportunities.  http://www.proyectovision.net/english/opportunities/index.html . View the latest issue of their newsletter at http://www.proyectovision.net/english/news/index.html


Proyecto Visión es un proyecto bilingüe para que los latinos con discapacidades y los empresarios entren en contacto. Lea más sobre las metas y las actividades de Proyecto Visión. http://www.proyectovision.net/index_spa.html. ¡El boletín de invierno de 2009 ya está aquí!
Learning Development Services offers free lectures for parents and professionals, meetings for Adults with ADD/ADHD and workshops for kids and teens. learningdevelopmentservices.com.
DeafDigest/DeafDigest Sports maintains a web site at
http://www.deafdigest.com/mainstream.htm to honor current mainstreamed athletes that play varsity sports for their high school teams. For more information, contact Barry Strassler at barry@deafdigest.com.

What is the Access Pass? It is the replacement for the Golden Access Passport as of January 2007. The pass is for citizens or permanent residents of the United States, regardless of age, who have been medically determined to have a permanent disability. It provides access to, and use of, any Federal recreation site that charges an Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee and provides a discount on some Expanded Amenity Fees. The pass must be obtained in person. http://www.us-parks.com/golden_access_passport.html

UCP San Diego Assistive Technology Center Open Lab Schedule for January through March of 2009! Many new pieces of equipment have been added to the CATE loan program. For more details on assistive technology you can borrow for FREE, call (858) 278-5420 or visit www.ucpsdtechcenter.org. View Open Lab Schedule for January through March 2009 for San Diego at http://www.ucpsdtechcenter.org/SDATC%20Open%20Lab%20Schedule.pdf or North County at http://www.ucpsdtechcenter.org/North%20County%20Open%20Lab%20Schedule.pdf

Together We Grow has a Medically Fragile Weekend Program that is designed to give parents a break and some adult time, while their children can interact with their friends and get the care they need in a safe and nurturing environment. This program is designed for medically fragile children ages 6 weeks to 21 years. For more information, call 858-751-0506 or info@togetherwegrow.net.
Submit your ideas to the President's Citizen's Briefing Book
Bring your ideas directly to President Obama. HOW? It's called the
Citizen's Briefing Book, and it's an on-line forum where you can share your ideas, and rate or offer comments on the ideas of others. The -best-rated ones will rise to the top. They will be printed out and gathered into a binder like the ones the President receives every day from experts and advisors. Visit the Citizen's Briefing Book now and share your ideas at
http://change.gov/citizensbriefingbook

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IN THE NEWS:
Autism Screening Tops Obama's Medical To-Do List, according to the new president's website, Whitehouse.gov. Autism is the only disorder or disease mentioned explicitly in Obama's 24-point agenda. Heart disease and cancer don't get the call. Neither does diabetes, or other chronic diseases. But there are four hefty bullet points addressing autism. Obama called for:

1. Increased funding for research, treatment, screenings, public awareness and support services for autism spectrum disorders.

2. "Life-long services" for people with autism spectrum disorders, as children and as adults. Many parents struggle to find and pay for screening and treatments for their children, but there is even less coverage and capacity for adults with autism-based impairments.

3. More funding for the 2006 Combating Autism Act, as well as improving state and federal autism programs.

4. Universal screening for all infants for autism disorders, as well as re-screening for all 2-year-olds. This is the biggie; children are currently screened only if parents or pediatricians voice a concern, so too many children aren't diagnosed until they enter elementary school. The earlier treatment starts, the more effective it is, and a national screening program would help reduce the number of kids falling through the cracks. It would also be a huge undertaking, at a time when both government and privately insured health care is foundering.


The 2006 Combating Autism act promised almost $1 billion over five years for autism research and development, but Congress hadn't appropriated $200 million per year, even before the economy worsened. It hints that Obama doesn’t plan on cutting funding for autism. Still, universal screening for autism will be a huge challenge. There's no blood test that can be used to diagnose autism. With autism, parents and doctors instead need to observe a child and look for delays in language, social interactions, and gross motor skills. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that pediatricians screen children during well-baby visits at 9 months, 18 months, and 24 or 30 months. Visit http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/screening.htm.
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OPPORTUNITIES:
Once a year, the American Red Cross offers FREE CPR Training!  This year, it will be held on Saturday, March 14 starting at 8 am at the Golden Hall San Diego Concourse. There is no pre-registration.  There will be an activity center for kids aged 5-12.  Children aged 10 and older are eligible to participate in the CPR Training. Visit www.sdarc.org or www.redcrossyouth.org or call 858-309-1475. View flyer.

Do you have an embarrassing disability-related incident that struck a funny bone for the first time? Send your story (200 words or less) to tim@newmobility.com by Feb. 15th. You just might see it in New Mobility, a magazine for active-lifestyle wheelchair users. Read the inspiring cover story, Couples Now & Then, in the February issue of the New Mobility Newsletter.

The YMCA Youth and Family Services TLC Family Institute is now offering weekly family life skills workshops beginning February 5th on Thursdays from 6:00 – 8:00 pm. Enjoy life with your kids even more and build on your strengths.  Understand what’s really going on in your family and what you can do about it. These fun and interactive workshops are helpful for parents, grandparents, childcare providers, case managers, social workers, educators, basically anyone with children (toddlers through teenagers) in their lives, even if they aren’t your own! Each week a different topic will be presented. Location: 2929 Meade Avenue, San Diego, 92116. For more information, call 619.281.8313, x110 or email droberts@ymca.org. View details.
Sun Valley Research Center (in Imperial, CA) is currently looking for participants for the following research studies: Alzheimer’s Disease, COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), Child and Adolescent Depression and Schizophrenia. If you would like to participate in one of the upcoming research studies, please call 760-355-0176 or email svrcresearch@gmail.com. Compensation is available to qualified participants for all research studies.

Educational luncheons focusing on the basics of special needs planning including understanding public benefits and the use of Special Needs Trusts will be held on February 11th and February 25th from Noon to 1pm. These lunches will be a good opportunity to network with professionals in the special needs field. To RSVP, contact Elizabeth Fletcher at elizabeth@calelderfirm.com. There is no charge for this program.

We Can Change the World Challenge
Middle school students across the United States are invited to submit solutions to environmental problems for the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge, a national sustainability education initiative. Student teams of 2-3 students, grades 6-8, under the mentorship of a teacher or adult supervisor, can register for the challenge. Teams will identify an environmental issue in their community, research the issue, and create a replicable green solution using Web-based curriculum tools. Additional information can be found at http://www.wecanchange.com/
APPLICATION DEADLINE: MARCH 15, 2009  

Law Mentorship Program
The American Bar Association's Commission on Mental and Physical Disability Law has established a national Mentor Program for law students with disabilities; prospective law students with disabilities, and recent law school graduates with disabilities. The Program's purpose is to give members of these groups the opportunity to learn from an experienced attorney. For more information please visit: http://www.abanet.org/disability/subcommittee/mentor.shtml
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RECREATION:

EFRC’s listing of local recreational programs can be found at http://www.efrconline.org/efrc.cfm?pid=Recreation

Poway TOPS Soccer - We are looking forward to having a new Challenged League soccer program in our area, starting in March.  The attached flyer will give you more information.  The kids will be playing within their ability level, so it will make it more fun for everyone. View details at http://www.efrconline.org/admin/files/Poway%20TOPSoccer%20Flyer.pdf

2/12/09 Valentine’s Dance 11:00am – 2:00pm

Teens and adults enjoy the afternoon dancing with friends at the War Memorial Building, located at 3325 Zoo Drive in Balboa Park. $3 cost includes lunch and disc jockey entertainment. For more information or to RSVP, contact Marie at rwiggins@sandiego.gov or call 619-525-8247 or 619-692-3866TDD.


2/14/09 Dance 7:00 - 10:00pm
Teens and adults dress to impress at the Sweetheart Dance. Enjoy dancing to a DJ at the War Memorial Building, located at 3325 Zoo Drive in Balboa Park. $5 cost includes snacks and photo. For more information or to RSVP, contact Rose at rcaldwell@sandiego.gov or call 619-525-8247 or 619-692-3866TDD.
2/21/09 35th Annual Gala Treasures from the Far East benefiting the Home of Guiding Hands. http://www.guidinghands.org/events_gala_2009.shtml
2/22/09 Bunco Bonanza – military support & fun
3/7/09 Guacamole Bowl 10am-2:30pm at the Balboa Park Club

Taste guacamole from more than 25 teams - public is welcome to attend for $5. For more information, call 858-565-7432. If you are interested in becoming an athlete in SPORTS for Exceptional Athletes, visit www.s4ea.org.

Adult Epilepsy Entertainment Gatherings (EEGs) take place on the 4th Tuesday of every month and are designed specifically for adults living with epilepsy, friends and family. For more information, contact Sasha Clifton at 619-296-0161 or sasha@epilepsysandiego.org.

4/18/09 Down Syndrome Association’s 4th Annual Dinner Dance Gala and Silent Auction - Featuring guest speaker Karen Gaffney, who will share a video about her amazing experiences swimming across the English Channel and Lake Tahoe. Enjoy a lovely dinner, an inspirational evening with Karen, auction and raffle opportunities, and dance the night away.  Bring your co-workers, neighbors and friends for an incredible evening. View details.
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REFERENCE POINTS:
Kennedy Foundation Public Policy Guide
The Kennedy Foundation has published a policy guide free to all from their website. The guide offers an orientation to public policy work with, and on behalf of, individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. The website version, designed for Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Public Policy Fellows, is available to anyone new to the field of public policy and intellectual and related disabilities. You can find the guide on the web at http://www.jpkf.org/JPKF-Policy-Guide/index.htm
Transition Resource Directory: Descriptions of Federally-supported Projects and Centers that focus on Youth Transition
This Directory was compiled in conjunction with a national transition-focused meeting, at which Federally supported projects and center staff, submitted descriptions. This meeting was hosted by the Federal Interagency Partners in Transition Workgroup. This group, launched in 2005, brings together Federal representatives to address youth, transition, and disability issues. http://psocenter.org/Docs/Resources/SecondaryTransition/TransitionResourceDirectoryfinal.pdf
Proposed ADA Regulations Withdrawn from OMB Review

On January 21, 2009, the Department of Justice notified the Office of

Management and Budget (OMB) that the Department has withdrawn its draft final rules to amend the Department's regulations implementing title II
and title III from the OMB review process. This action was taken in
response to a memorandum from the President's Chief of Staff directing the Executive Branch agencies to defer publication of any new regulations
until the rules are reviewed and approved by officials appointed by
President Obama. No final action will be taken by the Department with
respect to these rules until the incoming officials have had the
opportunity to review the rulemaking record. Incoming officials will have
the full range of rule-making options available to them under the
Administrative Procedure Act. For more information go to
http://www.ada.gov/ADAregswithdraw09.htm
REFERENCE POINTS was launched with the initial support from the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition www.ncset.org. REFERENCE POINTS is administered by the TATRA Project at PACER Center www.pacer.org, and funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Rehabilitation Services Administration.
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Exceptional Family Resource Center does not promote or recommend any therapy, treatment, institution, etc. and does not espouse any particular political, educational or religious views. Inclusion of information or resources does not necessarily imply promotion or recommendation by EFRC. Content is provided for informational purposes only.



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