Robots, Engagement and Autism Spectrum Disorder Intervention

BY GREG FIRN, ED.D Learners with intellectual disabilities often struggle with traditional educational tools, but robots are a game changer. Kids like robots because they’re “cool” and feel like big toys – nonjudgmental ones. With over 30 years of experience in education and a passion for helping every child meet their full potential academically and socially, I have seen how effective intervention is for children with ASD, particularly if it happens early in the child’s […]

10 Things to Know about Safety in the Fall

National Preparedness Month. September is National Preparedness Month – a time to prepare your family for handling emergency situations. This year’s theme is “Don’t Wait, Communicate,” and the Red Cross encourages all families to talk about and develop a disaster preparedness plan. An important part of any preparedness plan is having a family communications plan in place. Visit for information on emergency preparedness planning, such as how to plan for individuals with disabilities and […]


BY IDA KEIPER AND JESEMINE JONES; ILLUSTRATIONS BY BREE RUBIN When you travel and explore the world with your children, you have the opportunity to share their experiences and enthusiasm. On the other hand, children also benefit from traveling. For travel is full of teachable moments and, for children with special needs, the experiences are no different. Travel provides opportunities for them to practice and improve social and communication skill and promotes cognitive growth. Families […]

The Star Athlete

BY PEG GRAFWALLNER Moving our daughter from a frail little girl who couldn’t open a car door to an all-star athlete did not happen overnight. After bringing our six-year old daughter, Ani, home from a Bulgarian orphanage it was obvious to us that something was wrong with her mobility. She weighed only 23 pounds and wore a size 2 toddler. Her “diet” had consisted of liquids – a brown-mash type gruel and water, mainly because […]

We Found A 100% Electric Wheelchair Van

BY DAVE FINNIGAN We love that it is the last vehicle he will ever need, that there are virtually no service or repair requirements on electric vehicles, and that there is no heavy power ramp or mechanical lift to haul around or repair. Our 46-year-old son, Davy, has been in a wheelchair all his life, so transporting him appropriately has always been an issue. We have now found a 100% electric vehicle that works for […]

Wheels For Humanity

Over the past 20 years, UCP Wheels for Humanity (or UCP Wheels) has worked to make mobility accessible to everyone. Since 1995, UCP Wheels has provided mobility to 350,000 children and adults in 72 countries. UCP is an international non-profit organization with a vision of a future in which people with disabilities are fully included members of their societies and the organization realizes that the first step in achieving this is mobility. Its staff, which […]

Assistive Technology Information And Funding

Independent Living Centers These centers provide information and referrals on how to get funding in your area. There are approximately 400 independent living centers around the country. For the name of the one nearest you, contact the National Council on Independent Living Centers by following the link or call voice or TTY, 713.520.0232. Most states have a state independent living council (SILC) that can give you a referral. See the Directory of Centers for Independent Living. (Click […]

Funding Resources for Accessible Vehicles & Adaptive Equipment

Wheelchair accessible vehicles and adaptive equipment prices can run from $5,000 to $60,000+. Thankfully there are ways to help pare that down to an affordable figure. Disability grants and loans, government assistance and other help is available. You can even use multiple sources. State Agencies – Every state has a Vocational Rehabilitation Dept. Some provide funding for vehicle modifications. Phone numbers for state, federal and county agencies are in your local phone book or Google […]

United Fined for Violating Airline Disability, Tarmac Delay Rules

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) today fined United Airlines $2.75 million for violating the Department’s rules protecting air travelers with disabilities and for violating the Department’s rule prohibiting long tarmac delays.  The airline was ordered to cease and desist from future similar violations. “It is our duty to ensure that travelers with disabilities have access to the services they need, and that when significant tarmac delays happen, travelers are not left on […]

Scaling Up Leadership Training for Women with Disabilities

The Women’s Institute on Leadership and Disability (WILD) is the signature women’s leadership training program of Mobility International USA (MIUSA). “The contributions of the extraordinary women of the Women’s Institute on Leadership and Disability (WILD) not only improve the lives of women and girls with disabilities in their home countries, they also play a critical role in combating discrimination, promoting inclusion, and defending human rights the world over.” – Hillary Rodham Clinton, 67th U.S. Secretary […]