Two recent graduates of our Advocating for Change Together (ACT) class, Jennifer Monteleone and Lisa Okada Visitacion, are working on their graduation project. They have an incredible plan to build real inclusion in the public schools through partnerships with the student organizations. They are calling their program BIT, Building Inclusion Together.
Jennifer and Lisa state, “We hope students will begin to shape their opinions and philosophies, as well as develop their sense of compassion about why the inclusion of people based on their abilities, not their disabilities, makes our communities stronger.” They have an ambitious plan to break down misconceptions about people with developmental disabilities through two core programs. The first will tap into the leadership of the school such as the ASB student leadership. The second program will have presentations hosted by people with disabilities living in the community who will share their every day life experiences and express what inclusion and self-determination mean to them.
Another facet of their program will offer video presentations in classrooms followed by discussions led by Lisa and Jennifer. A number of schools have expressed an interest and will be meeting with Lisa and Jennifer in the coming months. If you know of a school that would be interested – please contact Lisa at firstname.lastname@example.org or Jennifer at Jennifer@buildinginclusiontogether.org
We are very excited to support this project, as their fiscal agent, and will soon have a way to link to their web site and through The Arc of King County donate to this project.
For more information about Building Inclusion Together, visit http://www.buildinginclusiontogether.org.