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It is Time for Hurricane Preparedness

By Barbara Palmer

Hurricane season is here! It runs from June 1 to November 30. The first important thing to do is to create your family’s emergency plan. You will want to consider evacuation routes, local emergency management contacts, and a disaster supply kit.

Director Palmer on TV

Agency for Persons with Disabilities Director Barbara Palmer recently appeared on Florida Face-to-Face with host Beth Switzer. Director Palmer shared information about what is happening at APD.

Able Act

On May 10, leaders from the Florida Prepaid College Board made a presentation to Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) employees in Tallahassee to share the latest on the new ABLE program. They are calling it ABLE United.

APD will Engage Providers on New Software System

For the past year, the Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) has been working with the Mediware company on the development of the agency’s new client information system.  Joint agency and Mediware workgroups are currently discussing the functional workflows in order to configure the system properly.

Friendly Focused

Coming to work with a smile on her face is a priority for Shannon Roberts. She has been greeting the public and fellow employees with her friendly face for more than a year while serving as the afternoon receptionist and administrative assistant for the Northwest Regional Office of the Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) in Tallahassee.

Able Trust Open House

On May 19, the Able Trust hosted an open house.  Dozens of people from throughout the community, including Able Trust employees, were in attendance. The Able Trust staff provided tours of their building and shared information about some of their initiatives.

Family Care Council Florida Meets

The Family Care Council Florida (FCCF) held its bi-monthly meeting in Orlando on May 21. Its main guest presenter was Shevaun Harris from the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) who answered questions about the Medicaid State Plan program.

Tacachale Athletes Shine at Summer Games

Nine athletes represented Tacachale at the Florida Special Olympics State Summer Games on May 20 and 21 in Lake Buena Vista. 

Family Café

The Agency for Persons with Disabilities will have more than a dozen speakers at the 18th Annual Family Café. Online Registration is now open.

Regional Meeting

On May 5, the Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) leadership met with the entire staff of the APD Northwest Regional Office in Tallahassee. The gathering was to provide an opportunity to answer questions from the regional employees, and give everyone the opportunity to meet face-to-face and get to know each other better.

Around the State

Cooke Makes a Difference

Agency for Persons with Disabilities Northeast Region Employment Liaison Renee Cooke received the “Making a Difference Award” at VISIONS 2016, the Student Transition Conference in Orlando. 

Northup: A Cut Above

Cameron Northup has long been an inspiration to others, and recently made history for being the first person with Down syndrome to graduate from Pensacola State College. She has accomplished this through hard work and determination. 

Sunland Receives Donation for Equestrian Program

The Braxton Family of Vernon, Florida, recently demonstrated their support for the Equestrian Program at Sunland Center in Marianna by making a $500 contribution to the program. 

Sunland Center Hosts 2nd Annual Art in the Park

Sunland Center's Annual Art in the Park Art Show was held May 7 at the beautiful Environmental Park at Sunland in Marianna.  The show featured the works of local artists in surrounding communities, residents from Sunland Center and the Developmental Disabilities Defendant Program in Chattahoochee, and inmates from the Federal Correctional Institute in Marianna.

Sarasota Agency Fair

Families of students with disabilities in the Sarasota County School system were invited to learn about agencies, groups, and others who may be of assistance to their child at the Agency Fair held April 21 at Suncoast Technical College.

Suncoast FCC Hosts Disability Fair

Together we can make a difference was the name of the disability fair and family fun day hosted by the Suncoast Family Care Council on April 30 in Brandon. The event was held to allow children and families to enjoy a fun and free day while having community partner agencies available to provide information and resources to them.

Three Wishes Revisited

Mariah Diaz is 8 years old and one of APD Southern Region’s Miami Herald Wish Book nominees for 2015.  Mariah has cerebral palsy, lives with her parents, and is a happy little girl.  Mariah’s family has had a rough couple of years. 

The Boys of Summer

On a beautiful South Florida evening, two residents of A Guardian Group Home and their chaperone made their way to Florida International University. They had been invited to attend a baseball game.

Tacachale Hosts Multicultural Festival

Residents and employees of Tacachale took a virtual trip around the world on April 27 when the center held its 3rd Annual Multicultural Festival. Tacachale has a diverse workforce, and the festival provides a venue for everyone to share unique elements of their culture with residents and coworkers.

Sunland Goes to the Polls

The Jackson County Supervisor of Elections office went the extra mile to ensure residents of Sunland understand their voting rights and how to demonstrate them when it is time to go to the polls.

Empower Florida

On May 20, about 500 business owners, healthcare providers, disability stakeholders, association members, and family members attended a daylong seminar at the Tampa Convention Center on disability issues.

Champion Staff
Melanie Mowry Etters - Editor
Christine Call - Writer
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