The IJOVA Volume XXVII, Number 2


In This Issue: Each Individual Has Something to Offer, and a Right to that Opportunity ... link to pdf


Inclusive Volunteering: People, Family, and Community Perspectives
Kimberly Miller, Pam Scoglio, & Stuart J. Schleien, Ph.D.
Communities are strengthened when the assets of every citizen are recognized, utilized, and valued. Inclusive volunteering (i.e., the engagement of volunteers with and without disabilities) capitalizes on the assets of community members who traditionally have not been sought out. There are benefits to both volunteers with disabilities and the agencies that engage them when they are included. Obstacles and barriers, both real and perceived, to fostering the engagement of these volunteers are evident. However, when individuals of diverse abilities are supported appropriately, these barriers can be successfully overcome and a win-win scenario realized. This article provides a brief review of what is known about the engagement of volunteers with disabilities, outlines how inclusive volunteering contributed to the building of capacity for one community, and illustrates how one family has been impacted through volunteering. The authors provide several suggestions for how volunteer resource managers may facilitate inclusive volunteering. ... link to pdf
Key Words: benefits, community, family, inclusive, volunteering


Not Just Recipients of Service: Including People with Disabilities in Volunteer Abroad Programs
Michele Scheib & Stephanie Gray
Volunteer service has the power to contribute to the vitality of communities, countries, and people around the world. It also has the power to transform volunteers in the process, leading to increased confidence, a strong sense of personal accomplishment, new professional aspirations, and more. International volunteerism can be a particularly empowering experience for people with disabilities who traditionally have been recipients – not providers – of volunteer service. Like all volunteers, those with disabilities bring a unique knowledge and skill set to any program or project. Volunteers with disabilities also help dispel stereotypes and change perceptions about what people with disabilities can and cannot do in countries and communities with fewer opportunities than the United States. In return, volunteers with disabilities, as well as their fellow volunteers without disabilities, can gain insight into their own culturally based perceptions of disability through the lens provided by interactions and experiences in a different culture. In this article, the authors introduce volunteer resource managers to information and resources on how to create inclusive volunteer abroad programs, as well as success stories from international volunteers with disabilities, compiled by the National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange (NCDE). Sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State, the NCDE is a comprehensive resource on advising and tools for people with disabilities, professionals, educational institutions and organizations on increasing disability inclusion in international study, volunteer, teach and other exchange programs. ... link to pdf
Key Words: volunteers, international, disability, accessibility


4-H PetPALS: A Volunteer-Facilitated Program
Lucinda B. Miller, Ph.D., & Ryan J. Schmiesing, Ph.D
4-H PetPALS (People and Animals Linking Successfully) is a volunteer-facilitated program that links young people, pets, adult volunteers, and seniors in a cross-generational educational experience. Guided by a comprehensive curriculum, young people gain valuable experience and skills that will enable them to successfully interact and work with senior adults and individuals with disabilities. The curriculum model is easily adaptable to any youth-serving organization and agency that works with local senior and/or assisted living facilities. ... link to pdf
Key Words: seniors, cross-generational, individuals with disabilities, pets

4-H Shine Up and Step Out: Engaging Youth with Disabilities in Service
Mitzi S. Downing, Ed.D.
4-H Shine Up and Step Out is a volunteer-facilitated program that engages both youth and adult volunteers in a series of activities that bring to light disability-related issues and barriers often faced when individuals with disabilities want to participate in community service and volunteer programs. Guided by a comprehensive inclusion curriculum, young people and adults gain valuable experience and skills that enable them to successfully interact and work with individuals with disabilities, especially youth with disabilities. The curriculum model is easily adaptable to any youth-serving organization and agency that wishes to become more inclusive and engage youth or adult volunteers with disabilities. ... link to pdf
Key Words: individuals with disabilities, youth, inclusion


The Self-image of a Mentally Retarded Volunteer
Elaine K. Hollander, & Hedy Peyser
The authors present an expansive case-study outlining the life and volunteer career path of Miriam, a mentally retarded volunteer, at the Hebrew Home in Washington, D.C. They describe her struggles as a volunteer, the challenges of Hebrew Home employees, and the personal successes Miriam gained through the experience of working at the Hebrew Home. ... link to pdf
(Editor-generated) Key Words: mental retardation, case study, volunteer, Hebrew Home

The Handicap May Be Yours
Claudia Apfelbaum
The author details the difficulties many handicapped persons face when entering an organization as a volunteer. The article also indicates the need for directors of volunteer programs to encourage acceptance and adaptation of organizational practices to be inclusive of disabled individuals. ... link to pdf
(Editor-generated) Key Words: handicap, volunteer, program evaluation, attitudes

Disability as a Part of Diversity
Lisa Taylor
One out of every seven people in this country has a disability, 19.1% of our population. Of all people with disabilities 66% are unemployed; 79% of them want to be engaged in meaningful work. It is apparent that there is a huge untapped resource for those seeking volunteers. This article explores barriers to and strategies for incorporating people with physical disabilities into a volunteer pool. It is based on the experience Courage Centers (a rehabilitation facility) has had in working with people with physical disabilities as volunteers and on a presentation made at the Association for Volunteer Administration International Conference in October, 1992. ... link to pdf
(Editor-generated) Key Words: disability, diversity, rehabilitation

“It Shouldn’t Be This Difficult”: The Views of Agencies and Persons with Disabilities on Supported Volunteering
Linda L. Graff, & John Vedell
The authors discuss supported volunteering and ways to help disabled volunteers become meaningfully involved in organizations. Focus groups were conducted and qualitative input from both agencies and volunteers, disabled and non-disabled, are discussed. ... link to pdf
(Editor-generated) Key Words: disabilities, volunteers, supported volunteering

What’s In It For Me and My Agency? A Survey on the Benefits of Engaging Volunteers with Disabilities
Kimberly D. Miller, Stuart J. Schleien, Paula Brooke, & Mary Merrill
The authors describe the status of engaging volunteers with disabilities, including making accommodations for disabled volunteers as well as the potential benefits and drawbacks to utilizing volunteers with disabilities. ... link to pdf
(Editor-generated) Key Words: volunteer, disabilities, inclusion

Engaging Volunteers with Disabilities: A Qualitative Study
Suzanne Stroud, Kimberly D. Miller, Stuart J. Schleien, & Mary Merrill
The authors outline the benefits to engaging volunteers with disabilities. They discuss their research study focused on the qualitative benefits of such engagement for both volunteers and volunteer administrators. ... link to pdf
(Editor-generated) Key Words: volunteer, disabilities, inclusion

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