Family Network on Disabilities (FND) was founded in 1985 by a group of parents of persons with disabilities who came together for mutual support and information-sharing. FND is a grassroots organization for persons with disabilities and their families that is family-centered and family-driven.
The mission of Family Network on Disabilities is striving for complete integration and equality of people with disabilities in a society without barriers. FND serves all persons with all disabilities and believes that everyone has intrinsic value and the inherent right to respect, independence, knowledge, freedom of choice, inclusion, quality of life, success, and equality.
The Youth Advocacy and Action Project of FND serves youth with disabilities by providing training in advocacy. The youth put those skills into practice by advocating for themselves and for improvement in their communities. By motivating youth to action, we hope to inspire a generation to take responsibility for their communities. The ultimate goal of this project is to leave in place a well-trained, confident group of youth with disabilities who will then be able to advocate for themselves–to improve their own lives as well as their communities.
Family Network on Disabilities launched The Youth Advocacy and Action Project through the support of The Starbucks Foundation in 2011. Through the program, over 500 youth and young adults with disabilities at 15 high schools were served through advocacy, leadership, and self-determination training. Upon completion of the training, the students led a service project in their communities and many students have developed and implemented a micro-enterprise at their school.
For example, students at Clewiston High School in Clewiston, Florida, began a business of recycling boxes to create gift boxes that they sell for holiday gift giving. This business plan will allow them to raise money for activities and service projects. It is their intent to sustain the program beyond graduation so that future students benefit as well.
You can generate donations to support Family Network on Disabilities and programs like The Youth Advocacy and Action Project through We-Care.com at fnd.we-care.com/getstarted.