It’s 2023. Across America, states are supporting the needs of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD).
You can learn how every state is doing in The Case for Inclusion 2023: Making Good on Our Nation's Promise of Community Inclusion for All. The report was released on February 28th, and was created by United Cerebral Palsy National organization, ANCOR, and the ANCOR Foundation.
This year's report includes the following insights:
Download a PDF copy here.
Did you know that one of the families in UCP's Family Support Department have a goat farm? It's Fraga Farm, about a 45-minute drive from Portland.
The owners have invited all the families in UCP's Family Support Department to the farm for a day of hanging out with their newborn baby goats!
Participants will get to get up close and personal with the baby goats (“kids”), including cuddles and bottle feeding. The event will be held on March 5th.
We want to extend a huge thank you to Fraga Farm, especially the hosts, Elisabeth Bueschen-Monahan (the Herd Manager) and Steve Monahan (the Cheesemaker) for creating this awesome opportunity for our families!
Due to popular request, you can now donate directly to UCP’s Family Support Department!
Your donation will assist 800 families who are raising children with developmental disabilities, right here in Oregon.
Our Family Support Department is there at every stage, from the moment of diagnosis to the time when the child is ready to start their adult life.
We offer monthly support groups, information and referral, fun outings, and workshops and classes. But most importantly, we offer hope, a sense of connection, and lots of fun along the way!
Thank you so much for your support. We couldn’t do it without you!
Save the date! The 2023 Family Support Conference will be held November 3rd & 4th, 2023.
We are excited to announce that we are holding our Family Support Conference on November 3-4, 2023!
The Conference is an incredible resource for families who are raising children with cerebral palsy. It’s the only event like it in the Pacific Northwest!
Attendees get the chance to learn from other parents, other adults and children who experience disabilities, medical professionals, and disability-related vendors.
As one attendee wrote, “I have learned more about CP within this conference than I have since my son was born. I can’t WAIT for the next conference!”
The Conference will be held at the Wilsonville Holiday Inn.
We are excited to share UCP Oregon’s newest Annual Report, which covers the 2020-2021 fiscal year.
The theme of this report is “Change.”
As our Executive Director, Ann Coffey, states in the report, “There has been so much change... But, through it all, the UCP community stood strong and resilient. We stood together. We sought new ways to complete our work. We found new ways to connect. We discovered new ways to find balance and purpose.”
A gigantic thank you to everyone who contributed, as a writer, photographer, and/or editor!
From the Desk of Suzannah Newman, Human Resources Director
2022 was a busy year for UCP’s Human Resources Department. One of our main focuses was updating and improving UCP’s compensation structure.
In late 2021, we began working with a new compensation consultant. The consultant conducted an Internal Equity Study, using specific factors that are defined in the Oregon Pay Equity Act.
The Oregon Pay Equity Act requires employers to ensure that they are providing equitable pay for comparable jobs using five characteristics: job knowledge, skill, effort, responsibility and working conditions. Going forward, UCP’s compensation structure will be evaluated every third year based on compliance with Oregon Pay Equity. The consultant also conducted a market survey of each job at UCP.
All of this was essential work, necessary to attract qualified and experienced candidates, retain talented employees, and create an environment that fosters teamwork, recognizes achievement, and aligns with UCP’s organizational commitments and service-level goals.
We also continued to engage in a wide range of external advocacy activities, lobbying for increased funding to sustain our efforts to provide fair and equitable compensation for our employees.
We are so excited to share the achievements of our customer, Henry Meece.
Henry uses services from UCP Oregon’s Supported Employment Department (also known as Employment Solutions). He works at Fulcrum Fitness, serving as a janitor at their SE location.
About his job, Henry says, “I like all the UCP Job Coaches I’ve had, and I like cleaning the gym when it’s quiet and everyone is gone for the day.”
But Henry is far more famous for winning medals at the X Games.
The X Games are an extreme sport competition, and are covered live on the X Games YouTube and Twitch channels. The Games happen twice a year—in the summer and in the winter—and usually consist of skateboarding, skiing, snowboarding, and BMX biking.
Henry started competing in the X Games in 2015. He describes the X Games as “challenging and crazy fun.” He adds, “In the X Games, we are paired with a pro or celebrity, and we each get one run down the red and blue course. We add our fastest times together and the top three times receive Gold, Silver or Bronze medals.”
Henry competes in a snowboarding category called “Unified Slalom.” Slalom is an exciting event! It involves racing down over a zigzagging course, having to turn and adjust quickly as you move between narrowly-spaced flags. Henry would love it if the X Games also added a category called “banked slalom,” competing on a twisty curvy course with banked turns.
Together with his first partner, Chris Klug, Henry won four consecutive Gold medals. Henry was paired with Jack Mitrani in 2020 and took home the Bronze. Last week, Henry and Chris Klug were reunited as partners and together they won third place, adding a Bronze medal to their collection.
Congratulations, Henry! We’re so proud of you!
PS: Want to learn more about the 2023 X Games? Click this link—you can even see Henry’s most recent score.
NOTE: Photo credit goes to Francis-King and Nnamani/Special Olympics.
We’d like to give a huge shout out to Diondre, who recently celebrated his 18-year anniversary at Fred Meyer. Congratulations, Diondre!
Diondre uses UCP Oregon's Supported Employment Services (also known as Employment Solutions).
PS: Want to hear more details about Diondre and his awesome Job Coach, Rory? We have good news for you! They're both going to be profiled in an upcoming Annual Report. Woo hoo!
February is Black History Month. It’s a time to hold space for Black Americans, to recognize and celebrate and grieve parts of American history that may feel all too invisible.
For UCP Oregon, it’s also a time to celebrate the contributions and struggles of Black people who experience disabilities.
Currently, 5.5 million Black Americans are living with a disability. But, as Ola Ojewumi says, “to be Black and disabled in America is to be invisible.”
Ola Ojewumi is both Black and disabled. She’s an activist, journalist, and a community organizer. She contributes to the Huffington Post, and founded two nonprofits.
Ola says, “According to the version of American history I was taught in the public education system, it's as though people with disabilities didn’t make any significant contributions to our society. The same was largely true for African Americans... Yet when you look at Black history, there is an undeniable link to disability; some of our greatest Black heroes and heroines have been disabled.”
She adds, “Since our society fails to do enough to acknowledge both communities' significant contributions, it is up to us to amplify Black disabled voices and both groups’ histories."
That’s why Ola created the #DisabledBlackHistory campaign. It's a social media initiative that celebrates the milestones of disabled black Americans.
Read more about Ola Ojewumi and #DisabledBlackHistory here.