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09.19 NEWSLETTER
CONSULTATION | TRAINING | IMPLEMENTATION
BUILDING STRONGER COMMUNITIES BY PROVIDING EXPERT GUIDANCE ON INCLUSION OF PERSONS WITH DIVERSE ABILITIES
Hello <<First Name>>,

A new season is upon us - the perfect time to think about scheduling a staff training for this fall and to budget for camp or other program trainings in 2020. MERGE offers a variety of trainings to meet your inclusion needs. We work with your organization to create a customized learning experience that will provide your team with the tools and confidence to successfully include persons with diverse abilities into your social and recreational offerings.
In this issue you will read about a recent visit to the YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne, where MERGE worked with all levels of their organization providing an individualized approach to each group: Executive Leadership Team, Program Directors, Child Care Professionals, and Inclusion Staff. 


Lisa Drennan

MERGE Founder
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MERGE OFFERS WEBINAR FOR ARC OF MASSACHUSETTS
 
Are you a family member or direct support professional of an individual with diverse abilities? Want to learn effective strategies to support them to access recreation opportunities in the community?
Don't miss this FREE Webinar hosted by the The Arc of Massachusetts with presenter Lisa Drennan, Founder of MERGE.
Inclusion within Community Recreation Programs: Building a Team Culture with Program Providers That Will Result in Successful Participation for Your Family Members will be offered on Tuesday, October 8th from 12:00-1:00pm EST. REGISTER TODAY
Participants will learn about: Principles of Inclusion, Top Ten Tips for Accessing Community Recreation, Understanding Different Program Models, Overcoming Barriers & Exploring the Benefits of Inclusion.

  
REGISTER TODAY FOR THIS MERGE WEBINAR

OCTOBER CONFERENCES - MERGE IS GOING - ARE YOU?

Be sure to join MERGE at these upcoming conferences!

National Inclusion Project's Annual Power Of Play Conference 
Oct 14-15th | Raleigh, NC | Register Here


The 76th Annual Vermont Conference on Recreation
 
Oct 10 & 11th | Fairlee, VT | Register Here

      
Both are ideal for staff of Recreation Programs, Camp, YMCA, Boys & Girls Club, or JCC's. Be sure to look for and attend a MERGE session to learn how to make your program more inclusive for persons with diverse abilities. 
LEARN MORE ABOUT UPCOMING MERGE PRESENTATIONS

EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS COALITION OFFERS INCLUSION TRAININGS

The Plymouth County Emergency Preparedness Coalition has engaged MERGE Inclusion Consulting to provide trainings and emergency shelter site evaluations to municipalities within their county. In October, this grant funded program will offer trainings for six local towns, ideal for health agents, emergency preparedness team members, first responders, COA, Commission on Disability, Town Hall, Library, School Personnel & any other town employees, providing the tools and confidence to successfully engage with citizens with diverse abilities during emergencies or day to day situations.
To learn more email: lisadrennan@mergeconsulting.org

QUESTION: Why is Organizational Commitment so important to inclusion?

ANSWER: MERGE Inclusion Principle #1 states that it takes organizational commitment in order for inclusion to be fully effective. There must be commitment from all levels of your organization for a culture of inclusion to flourish. Everyone from your Executive Director/CEO, Senior Management, Directors and front line workers, instructors, counselors, coaches & volunteers must be trained on and ensure that best practices are in place on every level. Every staff member should be committed to inclusion which will help to create more of a cultural shift and allow for more effective problem solving and strategic planning. 
   

FORT WAYNE YMCA ENHANCING THEIR INCLUSION INITIATIVE

The team at the YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne practiced the #1 Inclusion Principle before their 3 days of MERGE training and consultation even began. From September 15th-17th, their organization created a schedule that included all levels of their organization receiving trainings, facilitated discussions, consultations and site evaluations, all designed to provide their team with the tools and confidence to welcome, engage and support their members with diverse abilities.

Rebekah Coffey, Director of Adaptive Services explains this comprehensive approach to training association-wide, "Lisa trained over 100 of our staff on Inclusion Principles, Preventative Strategies & Tools, Solving Inclusion Scenarios, while providing tools, resources & more!", Rebekah continues, "While in Indiana, Lisa also met with our leadership team to discuss our strategic plan related to inclusion, while providing coaching to our adaptive champions, and conducted site visits". 

"It was an honor to work with this very dedicated team, who were seeking to enhance their already dynamic inclusion initiative" states Lisa Drennan, Founder of MERGE, "I look forward to continuing on this journey with them".

 
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MERGE Diverse Abilities Inclusion Consultant · 3 Sandy Ln · Pembroke, MA 02359-3422 · USA

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