DC Self-Advocates and Families Use Positive Personal Profiles to Advance Systems Change

The DC Supporting Families Community of Practice used person-centered thinking skills to create Positive Personal Profiles for our family members.  PPPs reframed our conversation from what deficits people with IDD have to what people like and admire about our family members and how to best support them; and built shared responsibility for the levels of change that must occur to advance our system of supports.   By the end of this session, attendees will be able to: a. Describe the work of the “National Community of Practice for Supporting People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities throughout the Lifespan with a focus on systems change efforts in the District of Columbia.  D.C. has convene a team of family members, people with IDD, and other government and community partners, to develop and implement an action plan that ultimately will shape policies and programs that support families.   b. Learn about how D.C. worked with Micheal Smull and Laura Buckner, a parent and person-centered thinking Master Trainer, to introduce and train the D.C. Community of Practice team on person-centered thinking tools and skills, and to use those as a vehicle for envisioning success — both for the individual family members involved, and for understanding and building a shared responsibility for the levels of change that must occur to advance our system of supports. c. Explain how creating Positive Personal Profiles for family members or ourselves, helps to reframe the conversation from what deficits people with I/DD have to what people like and admire about our family members and how people can best support them to live a meaningful life.   d. Summarize how people with IDD, family members, non-profits, and government agencies in D.C. used what they had learned from working collectively on Positive Personal Profiles to begin making changes at all levels– in thinking, in practice, in policy, and in rules and legislation – to better support people with IDD and their families throughout the lifespan.

Erin Leveton, Cathy Anderson, Joan Christopher, Rhonda White, Thomas Mangrum