May 2020 Council Meeting Wrap-Up

May 2020 Council Meeting Graphic

The Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities (TCDD) held its quarterly Council and Committee meetings from May 6-7. During the meetings, the Council funded new innovative projects, discussed challenges posed by COVID-19, and developed plans for future activities and policy work.

Council Business

The Council approves and monitors TCDD’s state plan, which guides projects and policy work. This quarter, the Council considered future state plan activities, including projects to support people with developmental disabilities (DD) by:

  • expanding best practices to support students with DD in post-secondary programs originally designed for students without disabilities;
  • establishing inclusive post-secondary programs so students with DD have the supports to succeed in higher education; and
  • improving access to culturally competent services and supports for people with DD through projects coordinated by small, culturally diverse grassroots groups.

Council members discussed the impact of COVID-19 on people with DD and how the pandemic has affected access to attendant care and supports, education, health care, housing, and voting. TCDD is monitoring the pandemic and sharing resources related to COVID-19. To learn more, check out our COVID-19 Information and Resources.

Grants and Stipends

TCDD invests in projects to change the services and supports system and build community capacity to help people with disabilities. This quarter, the Council awarded grant funding to six new projects.

Sexual Assault Prevention and Response: The Council awarded funding to the INDEX Program of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver Center at the University of Massachusetts Medical School to coordinate a project that will study the current state of sexual assault prevention and response for people with DD in Texas. The project will develop training curricula for self-advocates, family members, service providers, and others involved in sexual assault prevention and response.

My Day, My Way Mini-Grant: The Council awarded a My Day, My Way Mini-Grant to the nonPareil Institute to expand a program that provides training to adults with autism to develop independent living skills and find employment.

Community Inclusion Mini-Grants: The Council awarded funding for four Community Inclusion Mini-Grants. The grants will coordinate projects to create opportunities and address barriers so people with DD can experience full community life. Funding was awarded to the organizations listed below.

  • 29 Acres
  • Best Buddies International
  • Goodwill Industries of East Texas
  • The Arc of the Capital Area

This quarter, the Council awarded continuation funding for six projects already in progress. The grantees and their projects are listed below.

  • Educational Programs Inspiring Communities: Youth Leadership Development
  • Special Olympics Texas: Healthy LEAP
  • Texas Advocates: Next Chapter Book Club
  • Texas State Independent Living Center (SILC): Accessible Transportation Summits
  • Texas SILC: Leadership Development and Advocacy Training in Rural Areas
  • Texas SILC: Peer Support for Individuals Living in Institutions

For more information about TCDD’s projects, check out our Current Grant Projects. To learn about current and upcoming grant opportunities, visit our Funding Available page.

TCDD provides stipends to increase access to disability-related information and advocacy opportunities. Events Stipends support people with DD and family members to attend conferences or advocacy skills training events. Disability-Related Speakers Stipends support presentations on disability-related issues at conferences and workshops. Translation and Interpretation Services Stipends reduce linguistic barriers to access services and supports.

This quarter, the Council awarded stipends to six organizations. The organizations and their events are listed below.

  • Harris County Department of Education: Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Training
  • Hear My Voice: Dual Symbol Immersion Event
  • Summerhouse Houston: Building Business Connections and Relationships in Your Community Seminar
  • Texas Parent to Parent: Texas Parent to Parent Conference
  • Texas Tech University Burkhart Center: Higher Education Think Tank
  • Volar Center for Independent Living: Our Lives Disabilities Conference and Service Providers Expo

To learn more about stipends for events, speakers, and translation and interpretation services, visit our Funding Available page.

Next Council Meeting

TCDD’s next quarterly Council and Committee Meetings will be held Aug. 5-7. To receive updates about future Council Meetings, visit the Get Involved with TCDD webpage for ways to follow us.