Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Legislative Coffee

Today was The Arc of Whatcom County's Annual Legislative Coffee. Senator Doug Erickson, Representative Jason Overstreet and a representative for Representative Kristine Lytton were in attendance along with community members, families and self-advocates.

Tyler and his mom shared the importance of his job and medical support.
Community members listened intently as Beverly Porter, Executive Director of The Arc, outlined the possible state budget cuts.
Terri Hansen, Inclusion Advocate at The Arc, advocated for thorough dental coverage for all individuals with developmental disabilities.
The group shared their personal stories and the impacts of the potential cuts.

Representative Overstreet said that he appreciated hearing directly from his constituents and to learn about their personal experiences.

Senator Erickson discussed priorities in the state budget and how important it was to stay connected to your elected officials.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

8th Annual Buddy Walk

Thanks to everyone who participated and supported the 8th Annual Whatcom County Buddy Walk this past weekend! With a great crowd, amazing families, beautiful weather, wonderful prizes and a delicious lunch, it was a tremendous success!

This event was a great opportunity to promote inclusion and respect of individuals with Down syndrome and to raise money for important programs in our community. A special thanks to the incredible efforts of the all-volunteer Down syndrome Outreach committee: Jennifer Dyrland, Christine Griffin, Liz
Hemmerly, Alison Lyddan, Sandi McMillan, Bill Padgett, Makenna Padgett and Patty Reimers.

To get involved with DsO and help with future events, please call (360)715-0170, ext.205 or email makennap@arcwhatcom.org.
Your help would be very appreciated!

Team Captains were recognized before the walk and presented "Team Captain" badges.

member of the Youth Self Advocacy group, Laura Rawlins helped present the badges.

Lots of new little babies and toddlers were at the Buddy Walk this year...so cute!

Thanks to many local businesses, we were able to have many exciting packages for the silent auction.

Everyone enjoyed all the games and activities!

County Executive Pete Kremmen presented the proclamation declaring October 1st to be Down syndrome Awareness Day in Bellingham and Whatcom County. To read the proclamation , click here.

Communication and Technology Workshop

Can technology help my family member communicate and learn?

On Tuesday, October 25th, The Arc will be hosting a "Communication and Technology" workshop to help expand your knowledge and answer your questions on the latest tools and applications for improving communication skills.

The workshop will be held from
6:30-8:30pm at The Arc's Dan Godwin Center, 2602 McLeod Road, Bellingham. For more information, call Monica (360) 715-0170, ext. 303 or email monicab@arcwhatcom.org.

The workshop will be presented by:
Linda Schleef is a lecturer for Woodring College of Education’s (WCE) Department of Special Education at Western Washington University. She serves as the Coordinator for WCE’s Ershig Assistive Technology Resource Center, which features support technologies for pre-12 students with diverse learning needs.

Gail Noble-Sanderson is a Clinical Educator and Adjunct Faculty Instructor in Western Washington University’s Communication Sciences and Disorders Department. She was the Director of Rehabilitation Services at Skagit Valley Hospital and previously with the Children’s Neurodevelopmental Program at St. Joseph’s Hospital. She has also worked as a school speech therapist.

For more discussion on the technology topic, there also will be a "Coffee & Connections" on
Friday, October 28th from 10am-1pm. This is a unique opportunity to have a relaxed visit with trained advocates and parents and receive support and information for your individual needs. Please stop in for as little or as long as you wish.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

2011 Legislation Session Wrap-up

To see the various budget side-by-sides, go to http://www.arcwa.org/state_budget.html.

What bills made it through the process?

SB 5459, consolidating the RHCs was the biggest success of the session.

SB 5352 replaces the elimination of vision/glasses by allowing people on Medicaid to get them at cost.

HB 1163 made another small step forward on preventing bullying in schools.

HB 1053 provides for free training for family members who become legal guardians of an individual.

HB 1718 continues work on the issue of adults with developmental disabilities in the jails/corrections system by creating a diversion court for treatment rather than jail for people with DD, similar to what exists now for mental health.

SB 5097 passed the legislature in an attempt to create a work group to look at juveniles with DD in corrections facilities, as has now been done for adults, but the Governor vetoed the legislation. Advocates are still trying to find some way to begin looking at this important issue.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Successful Dessert Reception!

The Arc of Whatcom County hosted a dessert and coffee reception tonight at Pure Bliss. (Everything was incredibly delicious!)

Our goal was to introduce more community members and business leaders to our organization and our valuable programs for individuals with developmental disabilities.

The response was tremendous, and we look forward to continue building relationships in the community. Thank you everyone for your generous support!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Dessert Reception

Come and enjoy delicious desserts and coffee and learn about The Arc of Whatcom County.

Treats will include lemon cupcakes, chocolate cupcakes, coconut macaroons, nanaimo bars, maple pecan bars and citrus cakes. Amazing decadent desserts and delicious coffee...what could be better?!?

There also will a silent auction with fabulous treats and nights out on the town.

Pure Bliss Desserts (1424 Cornwall Avenue, Bellingham) is hosting the reception on Monday, June 6th from 6:30-8:30pm. The reception is only $20 per person.

Please bring your friends, co-workers, family and neighbors. They are sure to enjoy themselves AND learn of a very worthy, effective organization.

Your support of The Arc will help continue our work to building an inclusive community for all!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Arc's Open House

YOU are invited!

The Arc of Whatcom County
75th Annual Open House, Membership Meeting and Pizza Party

4-7pm, Wednesday, May 18, 2011
The Dan Godwin Community Center
2602 McLeod Road, Bellingham

This is a wonderful opportunity to renew your annual membership; become a member of The Arc; meet other members in our community; and learn about The Arc's valuable programs and workshops.

Everyone is welcome to join our celebration. Please bring your family and friends and introduce them to The Arc. (Bring the kiddos too...we will have bubbles, hula hoops and face painting!) Pizza, drinks and dessert will be provided.

If you have any questions, please call us at 360-715-0170. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Stories of Individuals with Autism

There is a video airing on PBS station KCTS on April 29 at noon. The video tells the stories of three people with autism who are aging out of school and facing an uncertain future as adults. One of the individuals is a Washington resident who is supported by Total Living Concepts in Kent, WA.

Join The Arc's Human Race "TEAM INVINCIBLE"

Ok ladies and gentlemen…it’s almost time for the Human Race (Saturday, May 14th)! Are you excited? We sure are!

This is a great and easy way to raise money...but we need YOUR help!
Let’s impress our community (and ourselves) with a large, enthusiastic team AND raise a lot of money to support the beneficial services of The Arc of Whatcom County.

We will have packets available at The Arc this week. (If needed, we can mail them to you so there is no delay in getting started.)
It’s easy everyone. Simply ask friends, neighbors, co-workers, family for any size donation…$5 to $100 is most common. Just think, if we got 50 people on our team and each raised only $200…we could raise $10,000 without even having an event! This would be tremendously helpful to help The Arc reach its goals for 2011.

We’d like to have FIVE co-captains on the team. Each of the co-captains would be responsible for recruiting team members and helping organize the group.
Please let me know ASAP (amym@arcwhatcom.org or 360-715-0170,ext. 309) if you are interested in being a team member, donor and/or a co-captain.

Thanks everyone! With your participation, we can raise much needed funds to better serve individuals with developmental disabilities in our community.

2011 Summer Camp Directory

The 2011 Summer Camps and Programs Directory for Children with Special Health Care Needs is now available. Over 70 camps and programs are listed for children with special health care needs and disabilities. You can download a PDF version by clicking here or call the Children's Resource line at (866) 987-2500 (option 3) or (206) 987-2500 to get a free copy. Prepare now and get ready for a great summer!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Changes Coming to ADA

For the first time in more than 20 years, regulations governing the Americans with Disabilities Act are getting a major overhaul. To read the Disability Scoop article, click here.