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Save the Date: Visions of Community 2010

Beth Harry

The Federation for Children with Special Needs will host its annual Visions of Community Conference on Saturday, March 13, 2010, at the World Trade Center in Boston. Participants at the last conference told us, “Every year here is the best ever!” The conference planning committee is working to ensure families can provide that same feedback for the upcoming conference. We want Visions of Community 2010 to be the best ever.

Highlights for the 2010 conference include a keynote address by Beth Harry, Professor of Special Education at the University of Miami. Dr. Harry will talk about her teaching experience and research related to disability and multicultural issues. In addition, she speaks about family issues from her own experience as a parent of a daughter with cerebral palsy who passed away at 5 ½ years of age. Dr. Harry has written “Melanie: Bird with a Broken Wing,” a self-published book, about her daughter.

Conference attendees will be able to attend workshop sessions (many presented and/or translated into Spanish, Portuguese, and Cantonese) about Early Childhood, Special Education, No Child Left Behind (NCLB), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Health Care for Children with Special Needs, Transition, Social/Recreation Opportunities and more. This is also a great time to network with other families and pick up free resources from our more than 70 exhibitors.

conference collage

The holiday season is approaching. Do you need a creative gift for a family member, friend, teacher or a caregiver who goes above and beyond for your child with special needs? Consider sending that special someone to the Federation conference. The registration fee is $75 prior to February 13; after that date, registration is $90. Visit the Visions of Community 2010 Web site for more information.

Nominations Needed: 2010 Community Partnership Awards

Do you know a parent, student, health provider, teacher, administrator, coach, neighbor or other individual who has worked to create and support the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in your community? Each year, the Federation awards Community Partnership Awards to individuals in Massachusetts who have demonstrated outstanding efforts at creating a ‘vision of community’ where everyone, regardless of ability, feels welcome, and has opportunities to participate. Award categories include Community Outreach, Inclusive Recreation, Educators (Inclusive and Special Education classrooms), Parent Advocacy, and Self-Advocacy.

Think about the people you know who have made a difference in the lives of individuals with disabilities, and nominate that person for a Community Partnership Award. The Federation will present the 2010 Community Partnership Awards at the Visions of Community Conference on March 13, 2010.

Submit your nominations on-line, through e-mail, or snail mail. Find everything you need to nominate that extraordinary individual at http://fcsn.org/conference2010/cpa_nominations.php.

The nomination deadline is January 8, 2010.