Thursday, November 9, 2017
At Integrated Living Opportunities (ILO), “community” – as a philosophy, as a practice, and as a goal – is the driving force behind everything we do. We consider ILO to be a community of self-advocates and their families, volunteers, staff and board members. This ILO community is further strengthened by the smaller (yet no less important) personal and professional networks of support that we facilitate, and that exist between ILO self-advocates and their personal communities of friends, relatives, peers and colleagues. Our goal as an organization is to help self-advocates build these networks, expand their personal communities and live independently – yet supported – by integrating into the wider communities that exist in their neighbourhoods, at their workplaces, and in their social lives.
Today, we would like the opportunity to talk to you about our latest community building project, ILO Community Group, as well as provide an update on our most recent fundraising initiatives.
Recently, ILO launched another community building initiative – ILO Community Group. The ILO Community Group is a unique, all ages, members-only group that operates within the wider ILO community. Our goal is to provide members with the opportunities to practice and develop independent living skills, participate in community building activities, and to learn about and embrace our community building philosophy. Families and individuals with disabilities that join the ILO group will be welcomed into an inclusive, supportive and supported community that facilitates the development of meaningful relationships. At Community Group, members can begin to make connections and build relationships that will help develop their own network of support – and networks of support are the cornerstone of ILO’s community building philosophy.
ILO Community Group was created to bring together individuals with disabilities who wish to join the ILO community, but may not be ready to participate in ILO training, or actively prepare for independent living at this time. Through engaging in ILO events, workshops, and taking part in activities such as the Skills Inventory™, we hope that community group members will develop the foundation necessary for independent living in the future, whenever that may be.
In addition to becoming a part of the ILO network, Community Group members learn about self-advocacy, community living, and independence. Members participate in social and recreational activities organized by ILO, in partnership with Edlavitch DCJCC, (Jewish Community Center in Washington, D.C.) and connect with other individuals with disabilities. Through these connections members develop friendships and begin the process of integrating into a wider community.
If you are interested in joining ILO Community Group, please follow this link, or contact us for more information. We have a number of exciting events lined up for 2018, including an ABLE pop up, where participants can speak to ABLE account experts and representatives from ABLE MD and register for an ABLE account. This event is available for Community Group members only.
ILO Fundraising: 2nd Annual Beers-n-Cheers, ILO GoFundMe Campaign
Beers and Cheers
On November 2nd (2017), ILO held our 2nd annual FUN raiser at Beers and Cheers. This event, which featured live music, happy hour beverages and light refreshments, was an excellent opportunity for ILO members to mingle, socialize and enjoy themselves while supporting ILO and spreading the word about our organization. It was an incredibly successful evening, with an excellent turnout, and we raised $1900 to help us continue to create supported communities for adults with disabilities! On behalf of everyone at ILO, thanks to Glen Lazovick, an ILO board member, for organizing this fun night.
ILO is also currently involved in another incredible fundraiser – a GoFundMe campaign created by ILO Founder, President and CEO Maedi Tanham Carney. ILO’s goal is to raise $25,000. All donations received between now and December 15th (2017) will be matched by an anonymous donor. Your donation today could help us raise $50,000 – all of which will help create integrated, inclusive, and supported communities for adults with disabilities.
At the time of writing, our GoFundMe Campaign has received $8,300. To date combined donations (direct to ILO, our “fun” raiser, etc.) are $16,284. We only need $8,716 to reach $25,000.
With more than a month left to go, we are confident that we will reach our goal. If you would like to donate to our campaign, please visit our GoFundMe page. If you would like to support us, please consider sharing our campaign on social media, and with your family, friends and colleagues. Every dollar raised help us achieve our goal of supporting and empowering adults with disabilities as they become fully integrated members of the wider community. Remember you can also donate direct on ILO’s website. Help us achieve our goal of supporting and empowering adults with disabilities to become fully integrated members of the wider community.Help us achieve our goal of supporting and empowering adults with disabilities to become fully integrated members of the wider community. Help us achieve our goal of supporting and empowering adults with disabilities to become fully integrated members of the wider community. Help us achieve our goal of supporting and empowering adults with disabilities to become fully integrated members of the wider community.
Would you Like More Information?
Thank you for taking the time to read our blog today. Information about ILO and the work that we do building communities can be found on our website, www.ilonow.org. To join ILO, or learn more about ILO’s training, designed to help self –advocates and their families building communities in which individuals with disabilities can live independently, yet supported, please contact us.