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Project HEAL (Health, Education, Advocacy, and Law) Expansion: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) Services

For many patients at Kennedy Krieger Institute, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) can be a lifeline, offering crucial support to vulnerable populations. However, the system is complex and often does not favor those who need assistance the most. The average national approval rate for initial applications is around 38%. The process becomes even more discouraging as appeals are denied at a rate of around 85%. Consequently, individuals who are already navigating life with a disability are left without assistance and can feel hopeless.



JoAnne Malloy, PhD, Selected as NH Social Worker of the Year

Congratulations to JoAnne Malloy, PhD, on her selection as Social Worker of the Year by the New Hampshire chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. She received the award at the Social Work Celebration in Concord, NH, on March 3, 2023. JoAnne is a Research Associate Professor at the Institute on Disability (IOD) at the University of New Hampshire and has worked to advance improved behavioral health for children, youth, and families in the state since 1982.



Alaska LEND Program Update

The University of Alaska in Anchorage-Center for Human Development LEND program started its second semester with didactics on Policy and Advocacy. This is in preparation for the 2022 Key Campaign and Legislative Priorities to be held in Juneau. We tracked down the movement of legislation of interest to the Alaska Mental Health Trust and partner advisory boards.



Kennedy Krieger Faculty Receive Grant to Build Capacity to Deliver Evidence Bsed Mental Health Intervention

Dr. Deepa Menon, of the Kennedy Krieger LEND Program and co-PIs Kathryn Van Eck, PhD and Nikeea Copeland Linder, PhD, MPH were recently awarded a Jesse DuPont Bell grant to address mental health and COVID-induced trauma in patients with autism and other special health care needs. By utilizing Cognitive Behavioral Intervention for Trauma in Schools (CBITS) training, Social Work trainees from collaborating HBCU�s will receive mentoring and training to deliver an evidence-based validated program through telemedicine to address student stress and anxiety, and to build coping skills and resilience.



TCDS Joins Steve Hicks School of Social Work

The Texas Center for Disability Studies (TCDS) is excited to announce its move to the Steve Hicks School of Social Work at The University of Texas at Austin."Along with the shift to the Steve Hicks School, TCDS welcomes their new director,"Sandy Maga" a, Ph.D., who is Professor in Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disabilities at UT Austin.



A Fellow's Perspective: Virtual Opportunities through Rochester LEND's Collaborations in Central America

Written by Mariela Leon-Thomas, 2021 LEND Alumni Trainee, Rochester NY

It has been more than a year since we started adapting to the "new conditions" of living in a world with the COVID-19 pandemic. Transitioning from face-to-face to all-virtual interactions was not as much fun as the option of "working and studying from the bedroom" sounded. Not only did we start missing familiar faces, but we had to limit new relationships to connections traveling through router devices and Zoom platforms. Despite these limitations, the pandemic has triggered a virtual realm of opportunity. It has challenged our creativity and our passion to keep pursuing the visions and missions we sought out in "normal" times. It invited us to think outside the box and has extended connectivity and networking beyond local boundaries. The 2021 LEND cohort has experienced this firsthand.



Mailman Early Autism Intervention Program

The Mailman Early Autism Intervention program uses the evidence-based, manualized Project Impact model, to provide telehealth-based parent coaching to families of children ages 18 months to 4 years with social communication challenges. This project was developed in response to COVID-19 to replace in-person services. This program includes 6 pre-recorded webinars for parents and 6 live coaching sessions. If needed, there is an optional 7th webinar and related coaching session focused on managing challenging behavior.



1Health Adds MN LEND

The MNLEND fellowship program was accepted as a designated 1Health Interprofessional Activity, the University of Minnesota's interprofessional education curriculum initiative that brings together students from a wide range of health-related disciplines. 1Health challenges medical, dental, social work, public health and other students to cultivate skills in teamwork, communication, and collaborative care.



Alumni Update: JaeRan Kim

Passionate about making disability more visible in social work education, JaeRan Kim (MN LEND, 2010-11) is writing and blogging about her field, and creating and teaching university elective courses on disability and social work policy and practice.



Call for Abstracts! The Mountain State Conference on Disabilities

The two day conference will provide cutting edge, best practice and evidence-based sessions for professionals while offering applied skill-based workshops for individuals on how to navigate through educational, medical, and other journeys they may experience. How are you helping individuals with disabilities on their "Journey to the Top"? Share your expertise with individuals, families, health care professionals, social workers, teachers, policy makers and others by submitting an abstract to present at the first annual Mountain State Conference on Disabilities from April 14-15, 2020 in Canaan Valley.



Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD) Professional Development Training in a Rural Region

In partnership with The Children's League and the Judy Center, the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities at Kennedy Krieger Institute conducted a two-day ACT Raising Safe Kids training for professionals at the Allegany College of Maryland in Cumberland, Maryland on May 14-15, 2019. ACT Raising Safe Kids is a program developed by the American Psychological Association violence prevention office.



Advocacy is Making a Difference (SC UCEDD)

By Kelly Walling, BSW Senior

Think back to your education... did you ever have a class where you were able to learn about disabilities??? If so, that is incredible! If not, then you're like me. Throughout my undergraduate and graduate career, I have not had access to a disability-focused course. We had classes that included disabilities in their course and teaching, but never one that focused on what having a disability looks like, means, and what we, as social workers, can do to best serve clients.

Carol Britton Laws says she hopes her students


Dr. Carol Britton Laws (GA IHDD/UCEDD) Featured on UGA Today

Carol Britton Laws, an assistant clinical professor in the College of Family and Consumer Sciences, is the founding director of UGA's first inclusive postsecondary education program for youth with intellectual disabilities: Destination Dawgs.



Melissa Mandrell named New Hampshire Social Worker of the Year (NH UCEDD/LEND)

The Institute on Disability at the University of New Hampshire congratulates Melissa Mandrell, MSS, MLSP on her selection as the Social Worker of the Year by the New Hampshire Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers.



2017 recipients of the Alfred Healy Leadership Award in Developmental Disabilities (IA UCEDD)

The Center for Disabilities and Development (CDD) is very proud to announce that Jessica Gallegos, Matthew O�Brien, PhD, BCBA-D and Caitlin Owens, MSW are the 2017 recipients of the Alfred Healy Leadership Award in Developmental Disabilities. The purpose of the Alfred Healy Leadership Award in Developmental Disabilities is to nurture in recipients a life-long commitment to leadership in developmental disabilities that will carry on Dr. Healy�s legacy for future generations. Dr. Healy, who passed away in April of 2012, was a world-renowned pediatrician and educator who devoted his life to caring for children with developmental disabilities. He served as the director of the Center for Disabilities and Development, Iowa�s nationally designated University Center for Excellence on Disabilities, from 1977 until he retired in 1998.

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