The Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities (TCDD) held its quarterly Council and Committee Meetings from Nov. 6-8 in Austin. During the meetings, the Council funded new innovative projects, discussed plans to address various disability-related issues, and provided input on disability services in Texas.
The Council approves and monitors the implementation of TCDD’s Five-Year State Plan, which guides TCDD’s projects and policy work. This quarter, the Council discussed many future State Plan activities, including projects to:
- support local self-advocacy groups,
- develop a report about community living,
- enhance skills related to financial literacy,
- build capacity to make local change, and
- include students with disabilities in schools’ disaster preparedness plans.
Council members also discussed opportunities for TCDD to provide input during the Texas Legislature’s interim period and they reviewed the TCDD Interim Charge Recommendations from the last legislative session.
Grants and Stipends
TCDD invests in projects to change the system of services and supports, build community capacity to support people with disabilities, and empower advocates to have their voices heard by decision-makers. This quarter, the Council awarded grant funding for eight new projects.
Meaningful Day Mini-Grants: The Council awarded funding for six Meaningful Day Mini-Grants. Through the projects, service providers will explore, implement, and test methods to help people with disabilities participate in meaningful employment and/or the community activities of their choice. Funding was awarded to the organizations listed below.
- Best Buddies
- Community Healthcore
- Reach Unlimited
- The Arc of the Capital Area
- The Arc of Wichita County
- Volunteers of America Texas
TCDD Policy Fellow: The Council awarded funding to Texas Parent to Parent to hire a full-time TCDD Policy Fellow. The Fellow will develop a deep understanding of disability policy and serve as part of the next generation of professionals who engage in policy activities that lead to systems change.
Outreach and Development: The Council awarded an Outreach and Development grant to an El Paso-based organization that facilitates community inclusion opportunities for people with Down syndrome. With the grant, the organization will raise awareness about the opportunities it provides and also recruit new participants.
Stipends: TCDD provides stipends to increase access to disability-related information and advocacy skills. Events Stipends support people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and family members to attend informational conferences or advocacy skills training events. Disability-Related Speakers Stipends support presentations on disability-related issues at conferences and workshops in Texas. Translation and Interpretation Services Stipends reduce linguistic barriers to access services and supports in Texas.
This quarter, the Council awarded stipends to the organizations listed below:
- Center on Disability and Development at Texas A&M University — The Texas and Southwest Gathering
- Coalition of Texans with Disabilities — 16th Annual Film Festival and Short Film Competition
- En Vox Alta — 5th Bi-National Pediatric Symposium (two stipends)
- Green Oaks Education and Support, Inc. — Improving Health and Wellness for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
- Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Council of Tarrant County — Making Connections Central Tarrant Disability Resources for All Ages
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Texas — Road to Resilience NAMI Texas Annual Conference
- The Arc of Greater Beaumont — The Road Ahead Conference
- The Arc of Greater Houston — 4th Annual Positive Futures Conference
To learn more about stipends for events, speakers, and translation and interpretation services, visit our Funding Available page.
The IDD Strategic Plan
During the November meeting, the Council provided input on the Texas Health and Human Services Commission’s (HHSC) IDD Strategic Plan. HHSC facilitated a listening session and Council members provided their feedback and recommendations for the future of disability services in Texas.
Next Council Meeting
TCDD’s next quarterly Council and Committee Meetings will be held Feb. 5-7, 2020, in Austin. To receive updates about future Council Meetings, visit the Get Involved with TCDD webpage and choose how you would like to stay connected to TCDD.