2002 Conference Proceedings

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DELIVERING AT SERVICES IN URBAN AND RURAL AREAS OF CENTRAL CALIFORNIA

United Cerebral Palsy
333 W. Ben Holt Drive
Stockton, CA, 95207
209 956 0290

Rick Bledsoe, Assistive Technology Specialist
rbledsoe@ucpsj.org 

Tyson Renze
trenze@softcom.net

The Technical Resources (TRacs) department of United Cerebral Palsy of San Joaquin, Calaveras and Amador Counties provides a full line of assistive technology (AT) services for a five county region in central California. The mission of the TRacs program is to enable and empower people with disabilities by providing consumer responsive assistive technology tools and services.

This session will discuss the various aspects of these services including (but not limited to): * Adaptive seating and positioning
* Adapted computer access
* Augmentative and alternative communication
* Environmental control
* Training and consultation for AT community stakeholders
* Worksite/ educational access
* Occupational Therapy
* Speech Therapy
* Physical Therapy

Participants will learn: * How consumers communicate, access computers, move around, and control their environment more independently utilizing AT
* How our lending library facilitates the AT process
* How the TRacs team assists schools and adult programs to implement AT services
* How the TRacs team reaches out to the general public to increase awareness and knowledge of AT
* How our inter-agency Augmentative and Alternative Panel improves agency communication and collaboration
* About "Boundless" our adapted sailing program
* About the role of the TRacs AT practitioner to assist with creating and implementing I_P's

This session will include videos of consumers demonstrating the use of AT. This session will also consider some key issues (including; building teams to include and support AT users, avoiding and unlearning learned helplessness, feature matching, public perceptions, system change, wading through the funding bureaucracies, agency collaboration, and consumer satisfaction) involved in the AT process.

Participants will learn how our AT lending library is a central piece to providing appropriate AT evaluations, follow-up services and training. Trials with the tools from the lending library allow AT teams to make prudent decisions regarding the purchase of equipment thereby reducing the rate of abandonment of AT tools. "Try it before you buy it." The ability to borrow equipment tends to facilitate on-going assessment. "Assessment begins but never really ends." The lending library also serves as a vehicle to recycle AT tools and equipment.

Participants will learn how TRacs participates in IEP's, ITP's, IFSP's, and etc. providing consultation, training, and equipment loans to school and program teams facilitating the application assistive technology. Three of the primary counties served by TRacs are rural communities located to the west of Stockton, California, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. Participants will learn how TRacs provides timely AT services to urban as well as rural areas.

Participants will learn how UCP facilitates the inter-agency Augmentative and Alternative Communication Panel (AACP) that includes volunteers from most of the key funding sources for AT in our area. The AACP has provided a forum for representatives from a variety of agencies that serve people with disabilities to sit at the same table to discuss individual cases.

Participants will learn about our adapted 24-foot sailboat, which allows people with disabilities to actively participate in sailing in the central California Delta's 1000+ miles of waterways.


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