Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Goodwill Job Training

November 26th Job Training Programs

There are two job training programs scheduled for Monday, November 26, 2012.  

Food Service
Earn ServSafe Certification and Workeys
Paid work experience in partnership with Bi-LO

Retail Training
Earn National Retail Federation Certification and Workeys
Paid work experience in partnership with Goodwill Stores

To find out more and to submit and application, please come to one of the following information sessions at the Goodwill store at 2744 Decker Boulevard: 
Friday, November 2, 2012 at 9:00 a.m.
Wednesday, November 7, 2012 at 9:00 a.m.
Friday, November 16, 2012 at 9:00 a.m.
Tuesday, November 20, 2012 at 1:00 p.m.

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Poochapalooza for Palmetto Animal Assisted Life Services

Save the Date! 
Saturday, November 3, 2012  Lake Carolina Towne Center

K-9 5K Run

RUN WITH THE BIG DOGS. Snap on your pooch's leash, or join us without man's best friend, for a run on a USATF Certified course through the scenic Lake Carolina Community. K-9 5k registration includes a reusable tote bag, post-race refreshments, FREE entry to Poochapalooza Dog Walk Festival ($10 value) and an official race t-shirt.
Day of Race Registration begins at 8 a.m
Start 9 a.m.
Start/Finish at Lake Carolina Towne Center
                                  Timing by
Early Registration (before September 1) - $25
September 1 through October 14 - $30
After October 14 - $35
Day of Run - $40
Special Military Registration Rate - $20

Poker Run

BRING YOUR HUMAN ON A "DOG WALK" STYLE POKER RUN. You and your human will walk a pre-set course, stopping at sponsor checkpoints to receive a playing card. At the end of the walk, each player selects their top cards and the best poker paws win prizes you'll wag your tail over!

Dog Show

COSTUME YOUR POOCH AND JOIN THE SHOW. The  pet parade will give you a chance to show everyone how special you and your human are.
Two of a Kind - This class is to showcase dog/owner matching or complimentary costumes. The dog and human with the most creative costume combo will take the day.
Full House - This class is for families who have more than one dog. Entries will be judged as a group, with the most interesting collection of dog costumes being awarded the crown.
The Joker - This class will showcase costumes that incorporate a trick or talent. We will recognize the top three in this class, but all entrants will receive a goody bag to reward them for their effort.
Queen of Hearts - This class is for the girls. We will select the Diva for the day.
King of Spades - This class is for the boys. We will select the Big Dog for the day.
Entry fees: $5 to enter as many classes as you would like. Any dog can enter. Register here.

Grab your human by the leash and head on over to Lake Carolina for a day of dog gone good fun. The proceeds benefit PAALS
PAALS is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization committed to enriching and empowering children and adults with physical disabilities and social needs by training service animals and providing animal assisted educational and recreational activities.
PAALS trains animals to assist people with varying abilities to live more independent and enriched lives by providing them with assistance dogs. Some of our specially trained canines are taught to turn lights on and off, tug open doors, pick up dropped items and alert for help to assist individuals in wheelchairs. Other dogs go on to assist children with autism and soldiers with PTSD to accomplish therapeutic and real life goals. These dogs are primarily placed in and around South Carolina.

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Monday, October 29, 2012

Easter Seals Vote for 2013 Seal of the Year

Help, Hope and Answers 
Easter Seals provides exceptional services, education, outreach, and advocacy so that people living with autism and other disabilities can live, learn, work and play in our communities.
Vote on the 2013 Lily Seal of the Year!

Vote for your favorite lily design to become the 2013 Lily Seal of the Year, and we'll send you a limited edition Lily Seal of the Year sticker as our thanks!
Every year, our lily seals remind millions of people about the hope that Easter Seals' services bring to kids and adults living with disabilities. For decades, our supporters have shared lily seals with friends, family, and neighbors, spreading our mission far and wide and allowing us to continue to provide life-changing services. Now you can be part of this important tradition.
Cast your vote for ONE of the lily seal finalists below by Monday, October 29. After you vote, you can make a special donation to reserve a warm, cozy blanket featuring the 2013 Lily Seal of the Year.
P.S.: Don't let your friends miss out on this chance to get a free limited edition lily seal sticker (while supplies last). Share this contest on Facebook and Twitter and help us get 10,000 votes before the 10/29 deadline!

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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Walk Now For Autism Speaks Carolinas

2012 Carolinas Walk Now

for Autism Speaks

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Join Autism Speaks as we walk to change the future for all who struggle with autism!Walk Now for Autism Speaks is a fun-filled, family friendly event and is our single most powerful force to fund vital research that will lead us to the answers we need. Experience the power of thousands united by a single cause by joining Walk Now for Autism Speaks. Autism is the fastest-growing serious developmental disorder in the U.S. – we need more volunteers to join our fight. Whether this is your first walk or the 10th, take the first step and register today. You will not only raise funds, but you will become a part of a fun and supportive family-focused community.

Every 11 minutes, another family receives the devastating news that their child has an autism spectrum disorder. Help us change that! Start fundraising today. Whether you strive to join our new "Grand Club" (walkers that raise $1,000 or more) or sell lemonade to boost your total or create your own unique event, you become a part of the solution! Don’t wait another minute - start a corporate, school or family team today!

Here is some information to help you on walk day:
• Enter zMAX Dragway off of Bruton Smith Boulevard (Next to Tom Johnson Campground). You will park on the right hand side of the large zMAX tower. Look for signs and parking attendants to help direct you!
• Next, go to registration. Follow puzzle pieces and signs from the parking lot leading you to registration.
• At registration, you can drop off your last minute donations and pick up your tshirts (if you raised $150 or more).
• If your team has qualified for Team Village, by raising over $3000 and having at least 10 walkers, look for the sign saying “Team Village” at registration and enjoy your fast track registration!
• After registering, be sure to stop by AS City and check out the latest news in Science and the amazing Family Services that Autism Speaks provides. Also, this is a great time to register at the Advocacy tent with Autism Votes. Want some great Autism Speaks apparel and accessories? Stop by the merchandise tent in AS City and throughout the dragway and stock up!
• Once you are inside the main entrance there will be so many fun things to check out:
o Family activities and games – enjoy lots of fun activities and displays for all ages.
o Resource fair – interact with nearly 40 different therapists, camps, doctors, and more who work with individuals on the ASD spectrum every day.
o Entertainment – Check out the great performances we have taking place on stage.
o Free refreshments – Fuel up with free beverages and free snacks before you start to walk!
• Time for opening ceremonies at 9:45. Join us at the small stage (in front of the large tower) as we sing the National Anthem and countdown the start of the 10th Anniversary Carolinas Walk Now for Autism Speaks.
• Walk begins at 10:00a.m. Feel free to walk as many laps or as little as you wish. One lap is a mile and a half. If you don’t want to walk, cheer on your team in the bleachers!
• Closing ceremonies begin at 11:40a.m. – Join us at the small stage as we recognize our Top Teams and Top Walkers from the day!
• Still want more fun and excitement? Join us for the after-walk cornhole tournament and BBQ. You do have to pre-register to participate, but all are welcome to come watch the fun. Registration begins at 12:30p.m. and the event kicks-off at 1pm.

We look forward to seeing you at the event!

Questions or Comments? Contact us at or (704)561-0003

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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Dart Appreciation Rally

Dart Appreciation Rally

Wed., Oct. 24, 2 - 2:30pm
CMRTA Transit Station, Laurel & Sumter Streets
downtown Columbia
DART riders, their families and friends are invited to join in a rally
to address the need to fund this critical public service. The
Dial-A-Ride-Transit (DART) system provides transportation to citizens
with disabilities as part of the Central Midlands Regional
Transit Authority (CMRTA).

  • Come tell your story!
  • Open mic and free refreshments

Over 4,000 in the Midlands relied on DART before the 2010 budget cuts.
Today, 2,600 riders rely on DART. Any more cuts would pose serious hardship.
After the Rally, participants will go to the Richland Co. Library (Assembly & Hampton)
to hear CMRTA officials answer questions about the vote on Nov. 6 for a penny sales
tax to restore and expand public transportation.
• • •
DART riders can call 803-255-7123
to arrange to be at the Transfer Station before 2pm on Oct. 24
For more information, call the SC Progressive Network - 803-808-3384

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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Free Digital Books!

Date: Thursday, October 25, 2012 

Time: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Location: SC Assistive Technology Resource Center
Poplar Building, Midlands Center
8301 Farrow Road, Columbia, SC

Cost: Free, but pre-registration is required.

Presenter: Valeska Gioia, SC Department of Education Assistive Technology Specialist

Description: There are numerous open source literacy websites that are available for free access to literature in the classroom. Many of these websites have text-to-speech included with the literature or can be downloaded in a digital format to be accessed with iPads and iPods, Android devices, Kindles, and MP3 players. In this workshop, we will review the various literacy websites and demonstrate how to download books in
various formats. We will discuss how these literacy websites can be used in conjunction with free text-to-speech software. You will also learn the criteria to get accounts from Bookshare and Learning Ally.

To register for this workshop:

For questions, call Will McCain at (803) 935-5004 or Lydia Durham at (803) 935-5263 or 800-915-452

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Monday, October 22, 2012

Turner Classic Movies: A History of Disability in Film in October

The Projected Image: A History of Disability in Film in October

Turner Classic Movies will dedicate the month of October to exploring the ways people with disabilities have been portrayed in film. On behalf of Inclusion in the Arts, Lawrence Carter-Long will join TCM host Ben Mankiewicz for The Projected Image: A History of Disability in Film. The special month-long exploration will air Tuesdays in October, beginning Oct. 2 at 8 p.m. (ET)The Projected Image: A History of Disability in Film features more than 20 films ranging from the 1920s to the 1980s. Each night's collection will explore particular aspects, themes, or types of disability, such as blindness, deafness and psychiatric or intellectual disabilities. In addition, one evening of programming will focus on newly disabled veterans returning home from war. "From returning veterans learning to renegotiate both the assumptions and environments once taken for granted to the rise of independent living, Hollywood depictions of disability have alternately echoed and influenced life outside the movie theater," said Carter-Long, who curated the series. "Twenty-two years after the passage of the ADA and over a century since Thomas Edison filmed 'The Fake Beggar,' TCM and Inclusion in the Arts provide an unprecedented overview of how cinematic projections of isolation and inspiration have played out on the silver screen - and in our lives. When screened together, everything from The Miracle Worker to One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest reveals another layer where what you think you know is only the beginning."
This Tuesday, the 23rd;


About Inclusion in the Arts
Inclusion in the Arts advocates for full inclusion of artists of color and performers with disabilities at all levels of production in film, television, and theatre. Our principal aim is to achieve full inclusion in American arts and entertainment, such that what we see on our screens and stages truly reflects the society in which we live; where each artist is considered on his/her merits as an individual; where the stories being told are drawn from authentic and diverse experiences; and where our individual humanity can be celebrated.

Connect with Inclusion in the Arts

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Friday, October 19, 2012

Young Adult Leadership Initiative: Providing a Solid Voice of Leadership in South Carolina

The Young Adult Leadership Initiative is an advocacy group that provides a solid voice of leadership in South Carolina.
Our purpose for the group is to:

  • Establish a Statewide Network of Young Adults with Disabilities
  • Develop Leadership Skills
  • Develop Advocacy Skills
  • Positively Impact the Community
  • Build Strong Relationships
  • HAVE FUN!!!
Our meetings are currently held on the last Saturday of every month from 1:00 pm until 3:00 pm.  Our facilitator is Mr. LaMondre Pough.  All meetings are conducted using the gotomeeting platform.  For more information on how to join this advocacy group contact Ebony Deloach (843) 226-0576 or

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

October Festival Supporting Special Need Families!

Visit with staff from SCATP at the October Festival Supporting Special Need Families!              
When: Saturday, October 20th
Time: 10:30 am – 2:00 pm
Where: Lake Carolina’s Green across from 212 Eascott Place, Columbia SC 29229
What: Pumpkin Festival * Music * PiƱatas * Food * Exhibitors * Vendors
More Information: (803) 720-5240,

Be sure to visit the SC Assistive Technology exhibit while you are there!

Velocity Distance Project
Bike-A-Thon for Abundant Life Assistive Technology Equipment Lending Library
Fun Mile Loop for Children – Start at the Village Green at 10:30am – Registration fee $10
Special Need Folks Bike Loop – Start at the Village Green at 10:30am – Registration fee $10
Register at Velocity Distance Project: or call: (803) 343-9369

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Family Engagement and Children with Disabilities: A Resource Guide for Educators and Parents

Harvard Family Research Project, Jamie Ferrel

All students benefit from family engagement in their education, but children with disabilities often require a greater degree of family involvement and advocacy than their peers without disabilities in order to be assured of receiving the same level of instruction as the general student population. In addition, special education teachers and families of students with disabilities often face a competing set of demands that can make it difficult to develop positive home–school partnerships. The Harvard Family Research Project compiled this resource guide to help family members and special educators establish a comfortable and effective partnership in service of promoting successful outcomes for children with disabilities. It highlights research reports, journal articles, examples of best practices, and tools that suggest methods for developing productive collaborations so that educators and families can, together, ensure better services for children in their care.
To download, please click on the above title.
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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Columbia Parkinson's Support Group Meeting

Logo image of Columbia Parkinson's Support Group

Meeting Date: October 21, 2012 - Sunday

Meeting Time: 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Meeting Place: Lexington Medical Park #1 Auditorium
 2720 Sunset Boulevard, West Columbia, SC 29169

Meeting Topic: Helping caregivers and patients to make critical decisions that impact their quality of life

Speaker: Debbie Kelly, LMSW, CMC

         A licensed social worker, Debbie Kelly is the principle owner of Geri-Advocates Care Management, LLC. With more than 15 years combined experience in behavioral health, managed care, geriatrics, and
hospice social work, Debbie is experienced in advocating for the needs of the elderly and disabled. She
works one-on-one with families to develop both short and long-term care plans that meet the needs of
both family members and their loved ones.

 "Our mission is to provide support and encouragement for aging persons and to assist family caregivers with helping their loved ones make critical decisions that impact their quality of life. Our goals are to advocate for the best possible solutions to the challenges aging persons face and to ease the minds of family members who care for them." 

Debbie Kelly Debbie will cover some of the questions you may have asked about resources during times of stress and financial need.

We will allow time for Questions & Answers from the audience. Examples of topics are below.
 What do we do when we have a crisis such as hospital discharge, placement decisions, or securing in-home care needs post-discharge?
 Who is available to assist persons with physical and / or cognitive impairment or decline, living alone in the home or in assisted living / nursing facilities?
 What help can family caregivers have with aging parents or other family members with mental or physical disabilities who are struggling to balance their jobs and personal lives with the demands of caretaking? Very often, the cost of caretaking in terms of salary reduction or job loss is significant, and the long-term effects on earnings potential and personal retirement plans can be devastating.

Our Meetings Are Free, But.... Yes, there are no dues "but" we always need your donations. Every
dollar you donate is one dollar more that allows us to continue to provide support, information, education,
awareness about Parkinson's disease, and fund raising to further research for the cure of Parkinson's
disease. Without your donations, there would be no "Columbia Parkinson's Support Group"!

Please Feel Free To Bring Guests - We always welcome any guests to come with you. The more your
family, friends, neighbors, business associates, or anyone who has an interest in Parkinson's disease can learn about Parkinson's disease, the more support they can provide. We always welcome students from our universities and colleges!

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Night of too Many Stars: America Comes Together for Autism

Saturday October 21st, 8:00pm EST/PST watch Hannibal Buress, Bill Burr, Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, Tom Morello, Tracy Morgan, Katy Perry, Amy Poehler and Seth Rogen at the Beacon Theatre for a live taping of "Night of Too Many Stars: America Comes Together for Autism Programs" at the Beacon Theater in New York City. Call in to donate and a chance to talk to Matthew Broderick, Anderson Cooper, Jimmy Kimmel, Julianne Moore and Meredith Vieira who will be joining Fred Armisen, Andy Cohen, Jack McBrayer, Bob Saget, Jerry Seinfeld and Jason Sudeikis to man the phone bank.  Geico is the on-air and digital sponsor for “Night of Too Many Stars: America Comes Together for Autism Programs.” Event sponsors also include White Castle, Tommy Hilfiger and Supersmile.

Since 2006, "Night of Too Many Stars" has raised over $9 million. In 2010, “Night of Too Many Stars,” through its partner organization New York Collaborates for Autism, gave more than $3.2 million in grants to 41 programs in 13 states. Autism is on the rise and now affects 1 in 88 children and 1 in 54 boys. “Night of Too Many Stars” will benefit a variety of autism schools, services and programs across the country, in support of the overabundance of individuals with autism and their families who so desperately need quality services.
Sunday, October 21, 2012 - 8:00pm EST/PST

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Save the Date! SC Assistive Technology Expo 2013

Mark your calendars for...

SC Assistive Technology Expo 2013
20th Anniversary Extravaganza

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
9 am – 4 pm
Brookland Banquet and Conference Center 
1066 Sunset Boulevard
West Columbia, S.C. 29169
(803) 796-7525


Mark your calendars! The South Carolina Assistive Technology Program Expo is returning for another exciting year! Come see what's new in assistive technology and listen to free presentations by great speakers

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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

National Disability Awareness Month

National Disability Employment Awareness Month

In October, Americans observe National Disability Employment Awareness Month by paying tribute to the accomplishments of the men and women with disabilities whose work helps keep the nation's economy strong and by reaffirming their commitment to ensure equal opportunity for all citizens.
This effort to educate the public about the issues related to disability and employment began in 1945, when Congress enacted Public Law 176, declaring the first week of October each year as National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week. In 1962, the word "physically" was removed to acknowledge the employment needs and contributions of individuals with all types of disabilities. Some 25 years later, Congress expanded the week to a month and changed the name to National Disability Employment Awareness Month.
About This Year's Theme
The official theme for October's 2012 National Disability Employment Awareness Month announced by the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy is "A Strong Workforce is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?" Employers who ensure that inclusive workplace policies and practices are woven into the fabric and culture of the organization create an environment that encourages all workers — including those of us with disabilities — to work to their full capacity and contribute fully to the organization's success," said Kathy Martinez, assistant secretary of labor for disability employment policy when announcing this year's National Disability Employment Awareness Month theme.

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The American Association of People with Disabilities Disability Mentoring Day


Disability Mentoring Day (DMD) program connects nearly 16,500 students and job seekers with disabilities to thousands of employers each year. The 2011 events took place in over 200 locations across the country. DMD, held the third Wednesday in October, promotes career development through hands-on programs, job shadowing, and ongoing mentoring. This experience has helped thousands of past participants develop lasting relationships and secure internships or jobs.

Click here for a toolkit on how to transition your DMD into a full time program

The American Association of People with Disabilities is the nation's largest disability rights organization. We promote equal opportunity, economic power, independent living, and political participation for people with disabilities. Our members, including people with disabilities and our family, friends, and supporters, represent a powerful force for change.

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Tuesday, October 09, 2012

South Carolina Assistive Technology Program NOVA chat Workshop

Spaces Still Available!

NOVA chat 7 & NOVA chat 10 Mini-Workshop                    

Date: Wednesday, October 10, 2012                                                    
Time: 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Poplar Conference Room
Midlands Center
8301 Farrow Road
Columbia, SC
Presenter: Ken Whitley, SLP - Key Technologies, Inc.
Description: The new NOVA chat series is the # 1 augmentative communication product released in 2012 and now there are two NOVA chats! The new Nova chat 10 (10” touchscreen) is a larger version of the highly popular Nova Chat 7 (7” touchscreen). These are ground-breaking picture and word-based dynamic display communication devices that offer features found in no other including ChatPC and TouchChat functionality, a Social Chat feature with social networks like Facebook and Twitter, many vocabulary files (over 30) for both literate and emerging literate clients, built-in camera and flash, Ivona speech synthesizer (including child, teen, & adult voices), and 4 color body shells included. Funding available from SC Medicaid, Medicare, and health insurance.
Cost: Free, but pre-registration is required.
To register for this workshop:

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