Latino Community of Practice

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Who we are:

In 2015, the Center for Leadership in Disability (CLD) of the School of Public Health at Georgia State University set out to address the complex needs of Spanish-speaking families with children with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including autism spectrum disorders (ASD).

In the past two years, we have co-lead in convening professionals and families to address existing concerns. The Latino Community of Practice: Supporting Families with Children and Youth with Disabilities brings together over 150 Latino-serving diverse, multi-sector professionals, family advocates, and partners from metro Atlanta and beyond.

What we do:

We are a diverse, multi-sector consortium of professionals, family advocates and allies across the state of Georgia that meet on a quarterly basis and engage in community building and learning in areas of the intersection of intellectual and developmental disabilities and educational and health equity.

Our Latino Community of Practice consortium co-leads bilingual community education and engagement for and with Spanish-speaking and limited English proficient families with a partnership with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Learn The Signs Act Early (LTSAE) campaign. And provides technical assistance to co-founding and core consortium partners on how to best serve, including the use of our Community Health Workers/Promotoras de la Salud model, the ever-growing Latino population of Georgia.

Impact

Who did (y)our Latino Community of Practice: Supporting Families with Children and Youth with Disabilities initiative inform, help, influence or impact? (UCEDD, individual, community, families or state) How?

One of the many benefits of the LCPR initiative has been its ability to create awareness about the needs of children and youth with disabilities among representatives of very diverse agencies and organizations. Many agencies have realized that the Latino community is hungry for information and advocacy opportunities and I believe the LCPR has played a major role in that realization, by bringing us together. Organizing the Autism Conference & Expo with a track for Latino parents was a major accomplishment and I am sure many parents benefited from the information and resources shared.

Ana Soler, BSW, MPH
Seso, Inc. {Interpretation/Translation Services)

– By providing updated information, resources about issues relevant to our Hispanic/Latino families.
– By connecting families with organizations that provide service to children and youth with disabilities.
– By becoming an important voice in representing this community, advocating for better access to services.
– By promoting inclusion and diversity among the program available for children with disabilities.
– By providing a space to organizations that support such families to network, exchange important information, and keep growing.

Mayira Bunting
YMCA of Greater Atlanta

Local government policies of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs. Through the wonderful information learned we were able to make more informed policy decisions.

Luisa Fernanda CardonaJ Esq.
City of Atlanta/Office of Immigration Affairs/Welcoming Atlanta

Families – network of  providers that can ask for help finding resources for Spanish speaking families.

Jennifer ZublerJ MD
Good Samaritan Health Center/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

GSU students by providing them with an incredible internship opportunity.

Cathy Bushnell Amann PhD
Georgia State UniversityJ College of Education

“Think Globally, Act Locally.” It is an old saying, but it has never rang truer in my mind and spirit than during the past few months at GALEO Institute for Leadership (GIL).
I’m about to finish the leadership program and I leave inspired more than ever to make a difference at a local level in the lives of people with disabilities and their families. I’ve even become inspired to consider running for office.
The personal connections that I made throughout this year at GIL are invaluable. I’m sure each one of my classmates will become friends and leaders in our community for the rest of our lives.
Together, we will make a difference. I feel that at GIL, I have a strong backbone of support. I can’t be grateful enough for the opportunity!

Viviana Fernandez
Advisory Member, Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities Bilingual National Content Manager for Cox Media

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