Sower Foundation

Outreach and Development Project

Statewide Need
More than half of Texans are black, Hispanic/Latino, Asian or Native American and are less likely to receive the services and support their family needs. We can better understand the different values, cultures, and customs in Texas to inform the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities’ future advocacy work, planning, and grant project development. We hope to do this by building relationships with organizations that are working to improve the lives of individuals from ethnic minority cultures, to support leaders to change the systems that provide supports and services, and to assist people of ethnic minorities who have developmental disabilities to have better access to services and supports.

Project Goal
Offer training for disability service providers to make their services more culturally appropriate. Host culturally appropriate resource fairs, small conferences or awareness events for disability service providers to promote healthy living for people with disabilities who are black or Latino.

Project Summary
The Sower Foundation offered training to families and disability service providers in underserved areas with the goal of making supports and services more culturally appropriate. Many disadvantaged populations lack access to personal computers and the internet. Additionally, cultural barriers may present challenges in accessing and navigating resources and information. The training sought to be culturally significant by considering shared norms, beliefs, values and expectations, as well as linguistic appropriateness for the target population. A bilingual review, readability assessment and pilot testing of translations were conducted to validate cultural appropriateness.

Training for families covered how to access and initiate available services, age limits of certain programs, how services are funded, income guidelines, where and how to enroll, and whom to call to request services. The Sower Foundation was also able to assist individuals with the process of gaining needed services from their initial diagnosis through the receipt and delivery of services.

Project Period
Sep 2012 – Aug 2013

Geographic Reach
Bexar, Fort Bend and Harris counties