Tuesday, February 28, 2017

SCPDO Community Engagement Day

The South Carolina Partnership of Disability Organizations 
invites the public, lawmakers and community partners 
to attend Community Engagement Day
(formerly known as Disability Advocacy Day)
on March 1, 2017.

This will be our 28th year in gathering advocates, community partners, and the public to raise awareness in preserving services and supports for people with disabilities, as well as honoring South Carolina communities who have proudly accepted, embraced, and included those with disabilities. 

Our theme is  
Stronger Together: Bringing Individuality to Where we Live, Work and Play.

Community Engagement Day will be held on the North side (Gervais St.) 
of the South Carolina State House grounds.

Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. with activities starting at 10.

Events include a walk, rally, and speeches by community partners.

We look forward to seeing you there! Don't forget to wear RED!  


Monday, February 27, 2017

Empowering A Future: Transition Conference --- Register Today!


Empowering A Future Transition Conference
Trone Student Center
Furman University 
 Greenville, SC.  
Friday, March 10, 2017
Full day of learning
Only $50 and includes lunch  

Please contact the 
Hampton Inn - Travelers Rest
 864-834-5550 for overnight accommodations 

Don't miss this important conference!

Are you a professional who works with young adults with disabilities who are ready for employment, independent living or continuing their education? Do you want to have the tools to prepare these individuals for a successful transition?  Empowering a Future Transition Conference is just what you need!

Empowering a Future is a full day of continuing education for transition specialists, guidance counselors, educators, rehabilitation counselors, and any other professionals supporting young adults with disabilities as they prepare for success in employment, independent living, and further education.

The featured speakers for this conference will be from
"I'm Determined."  The I’m Determined project, a state directed project funded by the Virginia Department of Education, facilitates youth, especially those with disabilities to undertake a measure of control in their lives, helping to set and steer the course rather than remaining the silent passenger.

Empowering a Future 2017 is made possible through support from Able South Carolina, Transition Alliance of South Carolina, SC Department of Education, Family Connection of SC, Protection & Advocacy for People with Disabilities, Inc.




Friday, February 24, 2017

Local Businesses Cater to Autistic Visitors


Dimmed lights, loosened rules:
Growing number of businesses cater to autistic visitors
(STAT News) - Toy stores are dimming the lights and turning off the music. A ferris wheel is letting children and their parents stay on as long as they want. And cinemas are letting patrons wander around the theater if they don’t want to stay in their seat.
Those patrons are individuals with autism.
It’s “the equivalent of building wheelchair ramps or accessible bathrooms, except it’s for cognitive disabilities, rather than physical disabilities,” said Steve Silberman, autism expert and author of a book on the history of the condition.
Autism is sometimes accompanied by a heightened sensitivity to light, color, noise, and smells, which can cause anxiety or physical pain in individuals with the condition. But as general awareness of autism grows, more private businesses are changing their practices during select times to accommodate individuals with autism.
Some of the forerunners of the trend have been retailers. For individuals with autism, a trip to the store, with its bright lights and blaring background music, can be paralyzing. So, stores across the US and around the world have experimented with toning down the stimuli.

AT Expo: Free Parking and New Location

Mark your calendar! Share with your friends and colleagues!

SC Assistive Technology Expo 2017
Open to the General Public
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
8:30 am – 3:30 pm
Columbia Metropolitan Convention Ctr.
1101 Lincoln St., Columbia, SC 29201

Cost: Free

Parking: Free (on grounds and at Park Street Parking Garage)

Come see what's new in assistive technology and attend presentations 
about assistive technology and its use. 
It’s the only event of its kind in the state!

To learn more about the SCATP Expo 2017 visit: 

We are looking forward to seeing you at the SC Assistive Technology Expo 2017!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Mapping Your Future

Young adults at tables interacting during last year's Mapping Your Future conference

Mapping Your Future!

March 11, 2017 at Furman University, Trone Student Center
The 4th annual Mapping Your Future Transition Conference is a FREE event for young adults with disabilities and up to 2 parents or other family member who are ready to learn how to navigate the transition process.  The conference includes a full day of learning how to transition to employment, independent living, and further education with experts in the field. Connect with community service providers that are there to support you with every step.  Network with your peers!

Ready to transition and need information on employment or independent living skills?  Do you want to further your education?  Are you looking for information and services to help you achieve these goals? The Mapping Your Future Transition Conference is for you! This full day, free training starts at 8:00 am and includes lunch!     

This year's conference will take place at Furman University's Trone Student Center in Greenville, SC.  Please contact the Hampton Inn - Travelers Rest at 864-834-5550 for overnight accommodations

You don't want to miss this important transition conference!

Click Here to Register

Brain Scans Detect Signs of Autism in High-Risk Infants

Brain Scans Detect Signs of Autism in High-Risk Babies Before the Age of 1

(NBC News) - Results from a small study suggest that it may be possible to detect autism in babies before their first birthdays. Researchers at the University of North Carolina were able to predict - with 80% accuracy - which babies with an older sibling with autism would later be diagnosed with the disorder through the use of magnetic-resonance imaging scans.

 Brain imaging in babies who later met the criteria for autism showed significant growth in brain volume during the first year. "It's the first marker of any sort, brain or behavior, in infants, to predict which individuals would be classified as autistic at 24 months of age," said Dr. Joseph Piven, senior author of the study and director of the Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities in Carrboro, North Carolina. The report was published Wednesday in the journal Nature.

The new study is experimental, and more research is needed before MRI scans could be used as clinical tests for autism, Piven said. And because it was tested only on high-risk infants, it's also unclear whether the procedure would help predict autism in typical, healthy families. But it's a major step forward in how early autism can be detected, even before symptoms appear.

By lowering the age of diagnosis for a child with autism, the earlier that behavioral intervention or treatment can be provided — and the more profound the benefits in communication and social skills could be.

"If we can target interventions before autism appears and before the brain changes appear, during a time when the brain is highly malleable or plastic, we can have a bigger impact on the outcome," Piven said.

 To read the full article via NBC News, click here

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

SC Youth Leadership Forum Applications

Youth Leadership Forum
Apply for the SC Youth Leadership Forum this year and be part of the BIG PICTURE!
2017 SC Youth Leadership Forum applications are now OPEN!
 Applications must be submitted by March 31, 2017 to be considered.

New to the forum?

The SC YLF is a unique 4 day, 3 night summer FREE leadership experience that builds advocacy skills for young adults (juniors, seniors, and recent high school graduates) with disabilities. Young adults will work together to learn how to reach their personal, educational, and career goals. They will take part in leadership activities with peers, mentors, lawmakers, and successful role models with disabilities.

What is a SC YLF Delegate?

Delegates of the South Carolina Youth Leadership Forum represent the best of the young adult leaders in the state. These young adults may or may not have previous leadership experience; the biggest requirement is that they have a desire to LEARN!

Anyone interested in applying for the 2017 SC Youth Leadership Forum must:

  • Submit one or two letters of recommendation
  • Complete an interview with the SC YLF team
This is a competitive process so youth are encouraged to be creative with the application!

SC YLF is made possible by our partnering organizations: AccessAbility, Family Connection of SC, COMET Transit System, SC Assistive Technology Program, SC Developmental Disabilities Council, SC Commission for the Blind, SC Vocational Rehabilitation Department and Walton Options for Independent Living.


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Do You Love Someone with Autism? Join us for Strides!

Do you love someone with autism?  
Today would be a great day to sign up to participate in 
Strides for Autism 
to show how much you care!
Join us April 1, 2017

To register, set up your own fundraising page, and create/join a team, please text STRIDES to 71777 and follow the link, or click here. Please note: After initially registering, you will be asked if you would like to become a fundraiser. Please click 'yes' to join our cause and set up your page and/or team.  

Click here for information on creating your own fundraising team!

Registration is $15 per person, which includes the annual t-shirt and your own website to help promote your efforts and receive donations from your friends and family. 

Day Agenda
8:30 a.m. - Registration/Check In
9:00 a.m. - Honorary Chair
9:10 a.m. - Start Walk
10:00 a.m. - Team Awards
Heritage Park
861 S.E. Main St.
Simpsonville, S.C. 29681
* Fox Carolina's Cody Alcorn, Honorary Chair
* Bojangles Bo-Berry Biscuits
* Kona Ice
* $1 Special Train Tickets
* Field Games by Scout Troop
Saluda Shoals
5605 Bush River Rd.
Columbia, S.C. 29212
* Cosplay Superheros
* Field Games by School Group

If you have any questions, please reach out to Brandy or Breck at strides@scautism.org.

 We hope to see you there!


Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Free Training: Disability Benefits & Employment

Disability Benefits & Employment:
Make it Work for You!
  • Are you interested in going to work or increasing your earnings?
  • Do you need information on how working will affect your disability benefits (SSI & SSDI)?
  • Do you want to connect with local agencies that can assist with finding a job and providing supports?

Please join us for this FREE community event!
1:30 PM - 3:30 PM

Trident SC Works Center
1930 Hanahan Road, Suite 200
North Charleston, SC 29406

For more information, call 1-800-681-7715 or TTY 864-235-8798
or Email Sandy Jordan at sjordan@able-sc.org

Reasonable accommodation requests must be made by 02/15/2017 

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Free Assistive Technology Training

Free Assistive Technology Training
 Image result for assistive technology
Free Webinars - Transition, Adult, and General

Section 508 Refresh – ICT Final Standards and Guidelines from Great Lakes ADA
1/31/2017 at 10am Pacific, 1pm Eastern
AND on 2/2/2017 at 1pm Pacific, 4pm Eastern from the
Access Board.
Supports for Vision and Literacy Across Platforms (iOS and Chrome) from AbleNet
2/14/2017 at 10am Pacific, 1pm Eastern
AT Discovery Webinar Topic: Hearing from ABLE Tech OK (audio conference)
2/14/2017 at 1:45pm Pacific, 4:45 Eastern
AEM to Improve Job Training and Workforce Development Program from NCAEM on 2/21/2017 at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern
Free Webinars -  K-12 Educators & Parents

Enhancing Teaching and Learning with UDL: Multiple Formats for Access and Engagement from AbleNet
2/7/2017 at 9am Pacific, 12pm Eastern
Teaching the Swipe Generation from NCAEM
2/8/2017 at 12p Pacific, 3pm Eastern
Apps for Access from the FL Instructional Materials Ctr for the Visually Impaired 
2/16/2017 at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern (90 min.)
Technology Consideration and Assessment for Secondary Students from CTD
2/16/17 at 1pm Pacific 4pm Eastern
Video Modeling in Early Childhood from PACER
2/21/2017 at 4:30pm Pacific,  7:30pm Eastern
Building Memory and Focus – for Students with Autism and Intellectual Disabilities from AbleNet
2/22/2017 at 9am Pacific, 12p Eastern (45 min.)
Apps for Video Modeling from PACER (streaming)
2/23/2017 at 9am Pacific, 12pm Eastern
Expanding Opportunities for Student Action and Response Supported with UDL Application from AbleNet
3/1/2017 at 9am Pacific, 12p Eastern (45 min.)
SETC webinars are at 3:30pm Pacific, 6:30pm Eastern
2/6      AT Consideration & Assessment
2/7      TouchChat HD w/Word Power: embedded literacy support
2/8      Mobile Device Management Overview and Q&A
2/9      Websites with reading supports: Tween Tribune, Rewordify and more
2/14    AT Implementation Plans
2/15    Chrome Book Accessibility
2/16    Snap&Read & Co:Writer: Supporting Struggling Readers & Writers
2/22    Apps and Accessories for OTs, part l
2/23    Math Websites with Great Free Tools, Activities and Lesson Plans
2/27    Apps & Accessories for OTs-part ll
Recently Recorded Webinars 

Great Lakes ADA:
  • Modern Web Accessibility - revisiting fundamentals and new challenges
  • Accessible IT - A status report on legal milestones
  • Speaking the Same Language: Making Closed Captioning Work
From CTD:
  • Funding AT for K-12
  • Envision-IT: Enhancing Transition Through Technology
  • AT Assessment Tools & Interventions: Tots Can Tech Too!
  • Acquiring Accessible Print Materials in K-12
  • Acquiring Accessible Digital Materials
  • Is it Accessible? What Does that Mean?
  • Best Practices for More Accessible Social Media

Strides for Autism

Please join us April 1, 2017 for Strides for Autism!
We are 2 months away from Strides for Autism!  To register, set up your own fundraising page, and create/join a team, please text STRIDES to 71777 and follow the link, or click here. Please note: After initially registering, you will be asked if you would like to become a fundraiser. Please click 'yes' to join our cause and set up your page and/or team.

Registration is $15 per person, which includes the annual t-shirt and your own website to help promote your efforts and receive donations from your friends and family.

Strides for Autism is the South Carolina Autism Society’s signature fund-raising and awareness walk. Monies raised for South Carolina Autism Society stay in South Carolina and go towards individual and family supports, education, advocacy, and training. According to the South Carolina Secretary of State, the South Carolina Autism Society devoted nearly 90% of its total expenses to program services.

Heritage Park
861 S.E. Main St.
Simpsonville, S.C. 29681
Saluda Shoals
5605 Bush River Rd.
Columbia, S.C. 29212

Day Agenda
8:30 a.m. - Registration/Check In
9:00 a.m. - Honorary Chair
9:10 a.m. - Start Walk
10:00 a.m. - Team Awards

If you have any questions, please reach out to Brandy or Breck at strides@scautism.org

We hope to see you there!

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

NEDA Walk: Columbia, SC

Columbia, SC NEDA Walk

Event Details
Walk Venue: University of South Carolina
Walk Location: Columbia, SC 29208
Walk Date: Saturday, February 18, 2017
Check In Time: 10am
Opening Ceremony: 11am
Walk End Time: 12pm
Walk Fundraising Goal: $15,000

For more information email karendmcmullen616@gmail.com
Event Speaker: Katie Ashley
Katie Ashley believes in living life on purpose. Through her writing, workshops and individual mentoring Katie offers ancient teachings from a modern perspective in a way that is practical, actionable, and inspiring. She has studied with and trained under some of the most renowned and respected teachers in the disciplines of meditation, yoga, integrative movement therapy, and yoga therapy. In her work she blends the knowledge of her lineage with personal insights and observations gained through her dedicated personal practice and experience mentoring students around the world. Her teachings offer her readers and students simple ways to bring their practice off the mat and meditation cushion and into their ever more purposefully lived lives.