Primary Tasks

    Secondary Tasks

      On June 8th, IDB will begin to offer some in person services in a responsible and cautious manner. We continue to encourage clients and patrons to reach out via phone and internet rather than coming to the building whenever possible. We know that some clients are wanting to resume training and meet counselors in person while others are not ready to do so. We respect this and will work to provide the best services possible in the given circumstances. Click here to view our in person services rules and guidelines. we are still taking referrals via the phone or through our website. To make a referral, you may call 800–362–2587 or complete the referral form To contact the library, call 515-281-1323.

      New Stories

      Parent Listening Sessions

      IDB is working to launch several new cross-program initiatives to help youth gain independent living skills, develop self-efficacy, and be prepared for the world of work and adult life. We have been hearing from parents for several years about the need for additional support, resources, and training so that they can help their children take on age appropriate responsibilities, keep up with their peers, and make the transition from school to work in a way that results in their children becoming independent, well-adjusted, and successful adults. . One of these initiatives is the development of a parent advisory committee and a youth advisory committee to help guide our programs. We believe it is very important to ensure that our activities remain responsive to the needs of those we serve. In order to gain information that will guide our program design teams, we are inviting parents of blind and low vision youth to share their thoughts, ideas, and needs at our virtual listening sessions.

      Thees listening sessions will be held on Monday , May 11th at 10:00 am and Thursday, May 14th at 7:00 pm.

      Join Zoom Meeting
      https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81413732909

      Meeting ID: 814 1373 2909
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      Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kcXE0djNr

      Possible Discussion Questions:

      • If we were to host regular webinars about technology, what topics would you like us to cover?
      • After the current crisis has past, what do you feel you would most benefit from in an in-person conference or training?
      • What are the best times of day, times of the year, for online or in person events?
      • If we were to create a parent and family webpage or blog, what would you hope to find there?
      • If we were to bring in speakers, either in person or virtually, such as subject matter experts or blind people working in different occupations, would you attend and do you have any suggestions for what folks you would like to hear from and talk with?
      • What questions do you have about IDB services and how do you think we can better communicate what we have to
        offer?
      • What forms of communication do you find most helpful? Email, Facebook, phone, etc.?
      • What training, services or support do you feel is most lacking for you and your child/ren?
      • What has you most concerned for your child/ren’s future?
      • What, if any, items or services from IDB have you found to be the most helpful?

      State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL) Request for Public Comment

      STATE PLAN FOR INDEPENDENT LIVING (SPIL) 2020-2023

      Notice of 30 Day Public Comment Period

      Tuesday, March 31, 2020 through Thursday, April 30, 2020

      Dear Iowa Disability and Aging Community, Partners, and General Public,

      The Iowa Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) and the six Iowa Centers for Independent Living (CILs) are charged with developing a three-year State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL). The SPIL is a requirement in order for Iowa to receive the federal Part B funds that are used to fund independent living services in Iowa.

      The SPIL is to outline what the Iowa Independent Living Network will do to strengthen and expand the network of Centers for Independent Living, and the activities the network will engage in to promote services and resources in communities across Iowa so that Iowans with disabilities can live, work, obtain education and training, and engage in recreational activities in the community of their choice, and not be forced to live in institutions, such as nursing homes.

      BACKGROUND INFORMATION :

      The Iowa Independent Living Network is comprised of the six Iowa Centers for Independent Living (CILs), the Iowa Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC), Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services (IVRS), and the Iowa Department for the Blind (IDB).

      The six Iowa CILs are non-profit organizations run BY people with disabilities FOR people with disabilities, including the elderly. They do NOT provide institutional housing for people. At least 51% of their staff, and 51% of their Boards, MUST be people with disabilities. Unfortunately, all six CILs are severely underfunded, and are currently only able to serve 35 of Iowa’s 99 counties with the following five core services. However, people with disabilities, including the elderly, who live in counties outside of the CIL’s service areas CAN receive information and referral services from any of the CILs to assist them in locating possible resources to meet their needs.

      The Five Core Services That CILs Provide :

      1. Information and Referral
      2. Peer Support Counseling
      3. Independent Living Skills Training
      4. Individual and Systems Advocacy Training
      5. Transition Services
      a. Transition services for youth from high school to post-secondary education and training.
      b. Transition services for people with disabilities, including the elderly, who reside in an institution and wish to transition out of the institution and back into community living.

      Iowa CILs and Counties Served :

      All six Iowa CILs receive federal Part C funds, federal Part B funds, and State funds to provide the five core services in their service areas.

      CIL Funding 2019-2020

      CIL Name

      Counties Served

      # of Counties Served

      Total Disability Population for Counties Served

      Part C Funds

      2019-2020

      Part B Funds

      2019-2020

      State Funds

      2019-2020

      Total Funds

      2019-2020

      Disabilities Resource Center of Siouxland (DRCS-Sioux City)

      Part C Funds: Woodbury

      Part B & State Funds: Cherokee & Plymouth

      3

      16,975

      $76,155

      $18,374

      $14,409.50

      $108,938.50

      South Central Iowa Center for Independent Living (SCICIL-Oskaloosa)

      Part C, B, and State Funds: Appanoose,

      Mahaska, Monroe

      Part B & State Funds ONLY: Keokuk, Marion, & Wapello

      6

      17,313

      $114,232

      $18,374

      $14,409.50

      $147,015.50

      Illinois/Iowa Center for Independent Living (IICIL-Quad Cities)

      Clinton, Muscatine, Scott

      3

      28,520

      $114,232

      $18,374

      $14,409.50

      $147,015.50

      Southwest Iowa Center for Independent Living (SWICIL-Council Bluffs)

      Cass, Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Montgomery, Page, Pottawattamie, Shelby

      8

      25,401

      $166,428

      $18,374

      $14,409.50

      $199,211.50

      Central Iowa Center for Independent Living (CICIL-Des Moines)

      Boone, Dallas, Jasper, Madison, Polk, Story, Warren

      7

      80,566

      $236,509

      $18,374

      $14,409.50

      $269,292.50

      Access 2 Independence of the Eastern Iowa Corridor (A2I-Iowa City)

      Benton, Cedar, Henry, Iowa, Johnson, Jones, Linn, Washington

      8

      46,615

      $247,503

      $18,374

      $14,409.50

      $280,286.50

      TOTALS

      35

      215,390

      $955,059.00

      $110,244.00

      $86,457.00

      $1,151,760.00

      Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services (IVRS) and Iowa Department for the Blind (IDB) also operate Independent Living programs and are able to serve all 99 counties, although they are also severely underfunded. The CILs, IVRS, and IDB coordinate their services to ensure there is no duplication of services.

      The 3-Year SPIL :

      Given that the Independent Living Network in Iowa is severely underfunded, how do we go about developing a plan to strengthen and expand that network?

      This is not an easy task.

      The SILC and CILs sent out a SPIL Consumer and Partner Input Survey last fall to get input on what folks thought was important for the Independent Living Network in Iowa. The GOALS of the SPIL are based on the results of that survey, which identified the needs.

      Briefly, here is an overview of the identified need and the goal to meet that need:

      IDENTIFIED NEED : A strong network of CILs, the SILC, and other partners to provide independent living services and promote and support independent living and choice for all Iowans with disabilities. (SPIL Consumer Input Survey 2019: 89.61% rated Very Important/Somewhat More Important for Accountability, and 95.46% rated Very Important/Somewhat More Important for Collaboration.

      GOAL #1 to Meet the Identified Need : STRENGTHENING THE IL NETWORK : Continue to strengthen collaboration and accountability among IL partners in Iowa.

      Under this goal we have objectives and activities to ensure the SILC and CIL staff and Boards collaborate; ensure fiscal and programmatic accountability of CILs and the SILC; and ensure CILs collaborate with IVRS and other organizations in their service area. All of these are activities that will continue to strengthen the Iowa IL Network. Please see the full SPIL document attached for further details.

      ******************************************************************************

      IDENTIFIED NEED : Increased resources for the IL Network of CILs and the SILC to strengthen the services provided by this network to promote and support independence and choice for Iowans with disabilities. (SPIL Consumer Input Survey 2019: 86.19% rated Very Important/Somewhat More Important for CIL access and funding of CILs).

      GOAL #2 to Meet the Identified Need : RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT: The CILs and the SILC will conduct resource development activities that lead to strengthening the services provided by Iowa’s IL Network.

      Under this goal we have objectives and activities to ensure the CILs and the SILC conduct resource development activities, which include advocating for increased state and federal funding for CILs so that CILs can expand services into additional counties currently not served by CIL services. Please see the full SPIL document attached for further details.

      *****************************************************************************

      IDENTIFIED NEED : Systems Change Advocacy to promote and support independence and choice for Iowans with disabilities. (SPIL Consumer Input Survey 2019: Advocacy issues in order of highest ratings of Very Important/Somewhat More Important are Health Care (98.02%), Civil Rights (94.77%), Medicaid (94.08%), Education (93.46%), Employment (92.81%), Community and In-Home Support Services (92.10%), Housing (91.50%), Transportation (90.85%), Social Security (90.73%), and Family Support (75.32%).)

      GOAL #3 to Meet the Identified Need : SYSTEMS CHANGE ADVOCACY: The SILC Council and Staff and the CIL Staff, Boards, and Consumers will conduct Systems Change Advocacy that promotes independence for people with disabilities, consistent with Assurance 9 and OMB Circular A-122, Item 25 concerning lobbying.

      Under this goal we have objectives and activities to ensure the CILs and SILC are engaging in system change advocacy activities that address disability and aging issues that Consumers feel are most important, including collaborating with other groups on system change advocacy. Please see the full SPIL document attached for further details.

      *******************************************************************************

      IDENTIFIED NEED : Outreach Education to promote and support independence and choice for Iowans with disabilities, including education on self-advocacy and leadership in the Iowa disability community. (SPIL Consumer Input Survey 2019: 90.79% rated Very Important/Somewhat More Important for Outreach).

      GOAL #4 to Meet the Identified Need : OUTREACH EDUCATION: CILs and the SILC will work to develop and promote outreach education to people with disabilities, the general public, and others, and education on leadership and self-advocacy.

      Under this goal we have objectives and activities to ensure the CILs and IVRS/IDB have outreach plans in place to educate Iowans on IL history and philosophy, and leadership and systems change advocacy. This will include people with disabilities who are members of unserved and underserved populations, and include urban and rural populations and minority populations (African American, Asian, Latino, Native American, Pacific Islander). It also includes training on leadership and self-advocacy, and the development of a statewide Consumer led leadership and advocacy coalition. Please see the full SPIL document attached for further details.

      *****************************************************************************

      PROVIDING INPUT ON THE DRAFT SPIL:

      This notice is an invitation to you to provide any input you would like on this draft of the new SPIL. The draft SPIL document is attached to this e-mail.

      There are several ways you can provide input:

      1. Send an e-mail with your comments and/or questions to Dawn Francis, Iowa SILC Executive Director, at dawn@iowasilc.org.

      2. Call Dawn on her cell with your comments at 515-480-3027.

      3. Participate in one of the TWO teleconference meetings that are being held to gather SPIL input.

      Here are the dates, times, call-in number, and code for the two public teleconference meetings. A reminder of the meetings will be sent out again a few days prior to the teleconference. We are doing teleconference meetings rather than in-person meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

      You can choose from one of these two meetings if you would like to provide input via the teleconference.

      Teleconference #1 :

      Tuesday, April 14, 2020

      10:00 am to 12:00 pm

      Call-in Number: 1-888-346-3950

      Code: 99761800#

      Teleconference #2 :

      Tuesday, April 21, 2020

      6:00 pm to 8:00 pm

      Call-in Number: 1-888-346-3950

      Code: 99761800#

      All input received will be reviewed by the SILC and CILs, and they will make the determination if any changes need to be made to the SPIL based on comments received. The SILC Council and CIL Directors will approve the final draft of the SPIL at the May 2020 SILC meeting, and the SPIL must be submitted to our federal funder, the Administration on Community Living, by June 30, 2020. The new SPIL, once approved by the federal funder, will go into effect on October 1, 2020, and will be in effect until September 30, 2023.

      Again, questions and comments can be directed to Dawn Francis via e-mail at dawn@iowasilc.org or by phone at 515-480-3027.

      ALL COMMENTS AND INPUT MUST BE RECEIVED BY
      4 pm on THURSDAY, APRIL 30, 2020.

      IDB and Library Service Update

      IDB is responding to this unpresidented public health situation by providing the best service possible via phone, email, and other virtual means. While we ask clients and patrons not to visit our building in Des Moines, we are still taking referrals via the phone or through our website. To make a referral, you may call 800–362–2587 or complete the referral form As always, Counselors and teachers are working to provide the best service possible to their clients.

      OUr library is still sending out books and providing services through mail, email, BARD and phone calls. Also, check out these programs that you can participate in from your own home.

      IDB Read.: With IDB Read you can call in and listen to one of our wonderful volunteer narrators read live on the phone, followed by a short chat about the book. IDB Read will start the week of March 30th.

      Mondays and Wednesdays from 4:00pm–5:00pm, you call in and listen to our narrator, Christine Mach, read a cozy mystery. The first one is titled A Scone to DieFor by H.Y. Hanna.
      Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00am – 11:00 am, you can call in and listen to our narrator, Bob White, read a western, titled Sackett’s Landby Louis L’Amour.
      Please call the library at 515.281.1323 to get the conference call number for IDB Read. We look forward to reading with you!

      Tech Time with Tyler Wednesdays from 8:00am–11:00am you can call Tyler Swett, Accessible Media Specialist, and get your tech questions answered. The phone number to call is 515.452.1343.

      Braille Bits Online. Monday and Wednesday at 2:00 pm. starting March 30th. It will be conducted over Zoom, an online meeting platform that is very easy to use. Join us twice a week for 45 minutes as we listen to a Braille Bits podcast and have a fun and lively conversations surrounding all things Braille. Please contact Denise Bean at 515.452.1338 for more information or to register. You can also register by completing this registration form at https://iowadeptblind.wufoo.com/forms/m1k0fjr70gwbg6g

      If you have any questions, please call the library at 515.281.1323 or go to the Library’s Blog, https://iowalibrary.blog for up to date information. Stay safe, stay connected and happy reading!