United for Change is Community Strong!
Community Strong is a weekly online gathering that is led by people with disabilities, for people with disabilities. This is an opportunity to start the week “Community Strong”. We will check in with each other, watch short videos, play games, and learn about the “important topic” of the week.
At the onset of COVID-19, The Arc Georgia saw that people with intellectual and developmental disabilities were, once again, being left out of community conversations because of the move largely to video conferencing. In an attempt to ameliorate this barrier, the Georgia office began weekly Zoom meetings with self-advocates to help build connections and to support the independent use of video conferencing platforms. The event, Community Strong!, quickly evolved and participation grew to over 120+. Now hosted by United for Change-SUN, each week a different person with a developmental disability is supported to create and host their own “show”. Additionally, a “Special Honored Guest” is invited to share, not about their work, but instead about their lives and their families during the shutdown due to COVID-19. These prestigious guest have included:
- Brian Kemp-Georgia Governor
- Judy Fitzgerald – Commissioner of the Ga Dept of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities
- Ron Wakefield, Director of the Ga Division of Developmental Disabilities
- Peter Berns – CEO, The Arc