Advocacy & Support

Self-Advocacy – A Journey Through Life

Too often, people forget how truly special they are. They forget how much they have to offer and all the stories they have to share, and questioning their own worth, they hide their greatness from the rest of the world, but by becoming a self-advocate, an individual is able to overcome their self-doubt and show the world to all they are capable of. Self-advocacy is a journey that allows individuals to reach the peak of their potential, and with every step they take, they leave behind a lasting imprint of who they are and all they have done. Read more.

Surviving the Holidays With Your Sanity Intact

Our families are far from typical. So why do we try to be that perfect “Norman Rockwell” family during holiday get-togethers? Tell yourself right now that you and your family are going to enjoy the holidays in your own way and at your own pace. Stop worrying about what others think and make the holidays meaningful for your children. Here are some holiday issues that might come up and some creative ideas to make it work for your family. Read more.

Person Centered Planning

Person Centered Planning is a series of processes used to learn about people with intellectual or developmental disabilities and to help them plan for their future. By putting focus on the individual and what they want, Person Centered Planning gives individuals the chance to be heard and to organize their lives in a way that is concordant with their needs, likes, strengths, and desires. This technique not only enables them to live the lives of their choosing, but also provides them with the opportunity to Read more.

Granite House

It was a moment the Insley family would never forget, a precious memory engraved permanently in their hearts as a place of solace and peace they would return to many times in the difficult years to come. It was a moment of pure bliss as Aaron and his father Tom proudly stood atop the summit of Granite Peak, Montana, after conquering the 12,799 foot climb to the top, a feat Aaron’s older brother Richard had accomplished eight years earlier. It was a moment that would inspire them for the rest of their lives. Read more.

Helping Your Child With Special Needs To Be Independent

Families of children with special needs may be overprotective, and often feel justified because of the challenges their children face. But children with special needs need to reach their personal best potential, and should be encouraged to be as independent as possible starting at an early age. Read more.

April is Autism Awareness Month! Autism: Improving Understanding in the Community

Autism has practically become a household word in the last few years. We hear about it at school, in the media and out in the community. Someone you know is likely affected by an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), either themselves or someone in their family. But what is it like to have autism? Read more.

The Groove

One of the most interesting and consistent findings from the Adult Down Syndrome Center is the discovery that people with DS need sameness, repetition and order in their lives. We call this tendency the "groove" because thoughts and actions of people tend to follow fairly well worn paths, or grooves. Read more.

The Role of Grandparents

Grandparents play a unique role and often share special relationships with their grandchildren. This relationship, however, can become more complicated when their grandchild has a disability. Read more.

Spotlight on Resources You Should Know About

ConnectWC provides information and links on a large variety of resources to help individuals with I/DD live full and productive lives. In the coming months, we will be highlighting a variety of these resources. Some you may have heard of and others may be new. Our hope is you will find some good information that you will find useful. Read more.

Holiday Tips and Strategies from ConnectWC

The following words of wisdom are from members of ConnectWC who have adolescent and young adult children with intellectual and developmental disabilities. They have developed strategies over the years to help the holidays go more smoothly Read more.

Self-Care When You're Caring for Others

Good nutrition as a caregiver is nourishing to you on many levels. Eating healthy will not only help you cope better, it may also protect you and your family members from future health problems. Read more.

The Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM)

Autism is a complex developmental disability that is present from birth or very early in development. It affects essential human behaviors such as social interaction, the ability to communicate ideas and feelings, imagination, self-regulation, and the ability to establish relationships with others. Although precise neurobiological mechanisms have not yet been established, it is clear that this disability reflects the operation of factors in the developing brain. Read more.

Stop Running by Building Skills

Nat runs to avoid work. Sherry runs when she wants attention. Mark runs whenever he can. They ran in the past and continue to run in spite of strategies created to stop the running. Sound familiar? Read more.

Meet The Arc

The Arc Greater Twin Cities and The Arc Minnesota are advocacy organizations that serve individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including those living in the Washington County area. Read more.

Surviving the Holidays

The holiday season is often challenging for most of us. For our family members with special needs, it is even more stressful. We need to employ all of our "social thinking skills" during this season Read more.