Advancing Inclusion of People with Disabilities
The Disabilities Fund of The Chicago Community Trust promotes the development of programs, policy and public action that expands the empowerment, equal opportunity, inclusion and participation of diverse persons with disabilities in the Chicago region. The Fund partners with and advises The Chicago Community Trust about disability inclusion and priorities for data-driven actionable solutions in the areas of employment, education, community inclusion and technology.
The Disabilities Fund was established thanks to the generosity of Shawn Donnelley and the Naomi Williams Donnelley Fund.
Advisory Board Members
- Jack Catlin, FAIA, LCM Architects, Co-Chair
- Karen Tamley, Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities, Co-Chair
- Zully Alvarado, Causes for Change
- Adam Ballard, Access Living
- Jackie Burgess-Bishop, Cook County Health & Hospitals System
- Deborah Grisko, Almost Home Kids
- Suzanne Kenney
- Kathy Lavin, Gateway to Learning
- Tuyet Le
- Ben Lumicao, Allstate
- Nancy Nauheimer, Northern Trust
- Kathy Ryg, Former State Representative
- Erin Smith, OCC
New: Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability Conference 2018
The Disabilities Fund is accepting applications from organizations to fund staff members’ attendance at the Kennedy Center’s premier Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability (LEAD) Conference in Atlanta in August 2018. The LEAD Conference brings together and helps build an international network of professionals looking to implement accessibility in cultural environments.
All nonprofit cultural organizations in the Chicago region are eligible to apply and should strongly consider attending LEAD to better access for the region. Preference will be given to grant applicants with the greatest demonstrated funding needs and to applicants who anticipate the greatest positive impact as a direct result of receiving a grant for their visitors with disabilities.
To apply, please complete the application form no later than Friday, July 13. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until funds run out or until the deadline. For assistance, please contact Risa Jaz Rifkind at firstname.lastname@example.org or 312.616.6791.
Inform and Act Fact Sheet Series
Did you know that almost half of people with disabilities in the Chicago region are people of color? Did you know that students with disabilities in the region are suspended at twice the rate of students without disabilities—and that only 30% will graduate high school? Stay informed on how disability intersects with your work by perusing the following topical briefing papers below.
Disability in the Chicago Region — Learn more about the intersection of disability in your community and our region in this Disability in the Chicago Region Fact Sheet.
Youth and Disability — Learn more about the challenges facing youth with disabilities in our region in this Youth and Disability Fact Sheet.
What can you do? Take disability into account. Want to know more about the challenges facing our youth with disabilities? This addendum includes supporting statistics, references and more information on our Youth and Disability Fact Sheet. Stay tuned for more on this series!
ADA 25 Chicago
ADA 25 Chicago was a year-long initiative celebrating and leveraging the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 2015. As the leader supporter, the Chicago Community Trust has continued its legacies with ADA 25 Advancing Leadership and other programs. To learn more about ADA 25 Chicago, please visit the archived website.
Renewing the Commitment Guide
The Renewing the Commitment Guide is for nonprofits to review and evaluate their obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The guide provides general guidelines as well a tip sheets and interactive evaluations.
This guide was originally created in 2010 at the 20th anniversary of the ADA, and has been updated with current information for 2015.
Quest for Equality: Breaking the Barriers for People with Disabilities
The 2010 white paper identifies three areas with the most opportunities since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act for full inclusion of people with disabilities; education, employment, and community living. The paper outlines goals within each area, all of which are still applicable seven years later.
Risa Jaz Rifkind