• December 2016
  • Vol. 17, No. 9

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Special Initiative: International Day of Persons With Disabilities

According to the United Nations (UN), over 1 billion people have some form of disability, and more than 100 million disabled persons are children. Since 1992, December 3 has been declared International Day of Persons With Disabilities (IDPD). On this day, people around the world are called upon to improve awareness and take action to increase accessibility and inclusion for people with disabilities. This year, the theme for IDPD is "Achieving 17 Goals for the Future We Want," referencing the goals the UN adopted last year to end poverty, protect the planet, and improve well-being across myriad factors over the next 15 years. Children and youth with disabilities are overrepresented in the child welfare system and need specialized support for them and their families to help improve their well-being. IDPD is only once a year, but children and families need support from communities and professionals year round.

Caregivers and child welfare professionals who serve families with disabilities face unique challenges. It can be difficult to find families who are trained, prepared, and willing to become caregivers for children with disabilities. Professionals need to understand the different barriers to permanency these children and youth can face and be knowledgeable about the different practices and resources available to families. The following resources provide insights to working with this vulnerable population from both professionals and youth, as well as examples of practices that help.

 

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