CHOP held its first REACH Your Potential workshop on Dec. 11, 2012. This two-and-a-half hour program for youth ages 12 to 20 with Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) and their parents was modeled after other REACH programs that occur throughout the year.
The program focused on advocacy in the IEP process, and social opportunities and services available after graduation. The workshop was facilitated by:
- Symme Trachtenberg, MSW, LSW, Trisomy 21 Program social worker
- Natalie Stollon, social work fellow
- Moira Kirby, special education fellow
- Len Kravitz, Philadelphia Department of Intellectual disability Services
- Julia Barol, Networks for Training and Development, an organization that assists people with disabilities in finding employment.
Ten families attended the workshop; three were from CHOP’s Trisomy 21 Program.
Keynote speakers were two young adults with disabilities who spoke about their experiences advocating for themselves in their IEPs. One of the speakers was a young woman who has trisomy 21. After the presentations, parents and youth participated in separate workshops to discuss the topics in depth.
Families reported that they found the workshop helpful and enjoyable, and are eager to attend additional workshops to learn more about planning for adulthood. The next event will take place on Tuesday, March 19, 2013, 6–8:30 p.m. Look for more information on CHOP’s Transition to Adulthood website and in Trisomy 21 Program emails.