FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 11, 2013
Contact: Melissa Loe
Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities
The Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities has awarded two grants to develop strategic plans to improve community-based services for people with disabilities and their families in East Texas. TCDD awarded $74,640 to the East Texas Center for Independent Living for one year and $75,000 to Community Healthcore for 18 months. Once the plans are done, each organization can request more funding from TCDD for up to five years to implement its plan.
The East Texas Independent Living Center will establish a network of individuals with developmental disabilities and their family members, mental health authorities, human service providers, educators, and medical, vocational and transportation providers to create the strategic plan. The plan will focus on persons with developmental disabilities who are at risk of institutional placement and live in Tyler, Athens, Jacksonville, Canton, Henderson, Mineola and the surrounding rural communities.
Community Healthcore’s project will focus on Gregg County first then Harrison, Marion, Panola and Upshur. Its strategic plan will have a special emphasis on three areas: respite services, culturally appropriate individual- and family-friendly health care, and behavioral supports. It will use a community-building model that focuses on discovering and mobilizing existing assets.
“I am pleased that the Council has awarded these grants to help people with developmental disabilities reach their full potential,” stated Senator Kevin Eltife (R-Tyler). “I look forward to hearing the success stories.”
TCDD is governed by a 27-member board, dedicated to improving the lives of more than 475,000 Texans with developmental disabilities. The council uses a variety of activities – such as grant projects, technical assistance, public awareness and leadership training – to enable people with disabilities to live and participate in the community. Developmental disabilities are severe, chronic disabilities that occur before the age of 22, such as autism, cerebral palsy, intellectual and developmental disabilities, mental illness, traumatic brain injury and epilepsy.