Providing information, education, and training to build knowledge, develop skills, and change attitudes that will lead to increased independence, productivity, self determination, integration and inclusion (IPSII) for people with developmental disabilities and their families.

National Family Support Grant

In August 1999, we were informed by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities (ADD) that our grant proposal to expand family support systems in Minnesota was approved. Minnesota is one of 22 sites funded by the ADD.

The Minnesota project, “New Voices: Honoring Cultures and Promoting New Voices for Family Support,” will work with families from diverse communities – African American, Hispanic, and Native American. The purpose of this project is to expand the ADD’s vision of a family-centered, family-directed, culturally competent, comprehensive statewide system of family support for all families of children with disabilities.

In partnership with the Institute for Minority Development, the University of Minnesota Pediatrics Department, the White Earth Reservation, and discapacitados abriendose caminos, families from these diverse communities will be trained, promoted, and supported in leadership positions on state policymaking groups that affect family support policies. All activities will be designed, implemented, and evaluated by people with developmental disabilities and families of children with developmental disabilities using the Baldrige National Award Criteria and framework.

A state family support policy council will be created. Focus groups will be conducted around family support issues; participants will provide input on the needs, requirements, and expectations they have about the kinds of services and service delivery approaches that will meet the project purpose. Outreach efforts will identify families from the three diverse communities who are eligible for family support services but are currently unserved or underserved. We will work with state agencies to modify their data collection practices so that family support program participation questions about these diverse communities are answered.

For more information:

Colleen Wieck, Ph.D., Executive Director
Minnesota Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities
370 Centennial Office Building, 658 Cedar Street
St. Paul, MN 55155
(651) 296-9964 voice (651) 297-7200 fax

Ella Gross, Executive Director
Institute for Minority Development
251 Portland Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55415
(612) 333-1993 voice (612) 222-1997 fax

Peggy Mann Rinehart
University of Minnesota, Gateway Center, #160
200 Oak Street Southeast
Minneapolis, MN 55455-2002
(612) 626-2931 voice (612) 626-2134 fax


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St. Paul, Minnesota 55155
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The GCDD is funded under the provisions of P.L. 106-402. The federal law also provides funding to the Minnesota Disability Law Center, the state Protection and Advocacy System, and to the Institute on Community Integration, the state University Center for Excellence. The Minnesota network of programs works to increase the IPSII of people with developmental disabilities and families into community life.

This project was supported, in part by grant number 2301MNSCDD-02, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects with government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official ACL policy.

This website is supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $1,120,136.00 with 83 percent funded by ACL/HHS and $222,000.00 and 17 percent funded by non-federal-government source(s). The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.