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Advocate and Family Opportunities

Wyoming Institute for Disabilities

Advocate and Family Opportunities

WIND values the input of advocates and families in our work. The following are opportunities to become involved in activities at WIND.


WIND Consumer Advisory Council

Positions available: Advocate representatives with developmental disabilities, family member representatives of individuals with developmental disabilities

Support: Accommodations as needed, reimbursement for meeting expenses

How to join: If you want to become a member of the WIND CAC, you must submit an application to the WIND CAC coordinator. Applications are available on the CAC website. If you would like a printed application mailed to you, please contact windcac@uwyo.edu or call (307) 766-2935.

Applications can be submitted at any time and will be kept on file for consideration when openings on the CAC become available.

About: The Consumer Advisory Council (CAC) is a group that actively advises Wyoming Institute for Disabilities (WIND) on planning, implementing, and evaluating center activities. The CAC provides an opportunity for members to voice interests and views on issues related to disability services, training, research, and information. Members help connect WIND services and activities to the community.

The CAC is made up of individuals with developmental disabilities, family members, and representatives from state and community agencies, educators, and policy makers. Individuals with disabilities and family members make up at least 50 percent of the CAC.

Members of the CAC are expected to:

  • Attend two in-person meetings a year
  • Participate in at least two teleconferences a year, scheduled as need
  • Work on building capacity of self-advocates/advocates at WIND
  • Participate on WIND project advisory committees
  • Share resources, ideas, and networks
  • Represent WIND at local and regional events

Wyoming Family to Family Advisory Council and Family Partners

Positions available: Advocate youth representatives (age 14-25) with a special health care need, family member representatives of a children with special health care need

Support: Accommodations as needed, reimbursement for meeting expenses. Family partners earn a stipend (payment) for their work on WY F2F.

How to join: For more information, contact Michele Mitchum, Coordinator, Information Dissemination, (307) 766-2995 | mmitchum@uwyo.edu.

About: The Wyoming Family to Family Advisory Council and Family Partners shape the direction of Wyoming Family to Family health initiatives.  This council meets at least once a year to help to develop, and evaluate and improve the quality and reach of the activities of the Wyoming Family to Family Health Information Center (WY F2F). WY F2F is recruiting family members to serve on this Council and be Family Partners with emphasis on families who represent diverse backgrounds, including racially, culturally, linguistically, socio-economically, and GLBTQI+.  

We are looking for individuals who:

  • Have a family member who has a special health care need
  • Wish to work together with other families and professionals
  • Have an interest in health care and systems to support families
  • Want to share his or her knowledge as a family member to improve experiences for other families

The WY F2F Advisory Council meets in person one time a year in Laramie, Wyoming. There also is a requirement for meetings via phone or web conference between meetings. Costs for families to attend meeting are reimbursed.


Family Mentorship Network-Autism

Positions available: Family member representatives of children with autism

Support: Accommodations as needed, reimbursement for meeting expenses

How to join: For more information, contact Michele Mitchum, Coordinator, Information Dissemination, (307) 766-2995 | mmitchum@uwyo.edu.

About: Wyoming Institute for Disabilities, though the Wyoming Family to Family Health Information Center (WY F2F) is working to create a parent mentorship program for families who have children with Autism in Wyoming. We are recruiting for families who have child diagnosed with Autism who are willing to serve as mentors for families of newly diagnosed children.

Specifically, we are looking for families who:

  • Live in Park, Natrona and Albany counties who may be willing to be involved in a pilot mentoring project (January 2016-August 2016)
  • Wish to work together with other families and professionals
  • Want to share knowledge as a family member to improve experiences for other families
  • Have an interest in health care and systems to support families
  • Are interested in developing a family network in Wyoming

Expectations of families who wish to be mentors include:

  • Attend a stakeholder meeting in October in Laramie (travel expenses reimbursed)
  • Participate in a two day training on becoming a mentor (travel expenses reimbursed)
  • Participate in monthly meetings with family mentee support as needed. These can be conducted via phone/videoconference.

Vision Stakeholder Group

Positions available: Family member representatives of children with vision impairments

Support: Accommodations as needed, reimbursement for meeting expenses

How to join: Please contact Julia Lausch, project coordinator, at wyvision@uwyo.edu if you are interested in participating in this important endeavor.

Early childhood vision screening and treatment can prevent permanent vision loss, learning difficulties, and delayed sensory, motor, cognitive or social-emotional development. The Wyoming Vision Collaborative is a group of approximately 30 stakeholders that meet regularly (once every 1-2 months), via phone conference, to discuss early childhood vision screening across the state in order to identify and refer children to appropriate eye care.

We are looking for families to serve on our stakeholder group. Families will help shape the programs development, suggestions on how to improve the screening activities in early childhood settings, and will help to disseminate information amongst people within their community about any updates related to vision screening.


Utah Regional Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (URLEND)

Positions available: Family member representative of children with disabilities

Support: A Family Trainee will receive a $2,500 stipend for work occurring over the course of an academic year. A Family Mentor will receive a $200 stipend for work occurring over the course of a year.

How to join: For more information and an application please contact: Canyon Hardesty, URLEND Coordinator (307) 766-5003 | canyon@uwyo.edu.

URLEND stands for Utah Regional Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities, and is a training program to prepare future leaders who will serve children with disabilities. This program is offered through the Wyoming Institute for Disabilities (WIND) in collaboration with Utah State University, Center for Persons with Disabilities and the University of Utah, School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics. The program’s family involvement component provides interdisciplinary teams with an invaluable perspective in the scope of their training - the perspective of the family.

Family Trainee

A family trainee is an individual who:

  • Has a family member with a special health care need
  • Wants to enhance leadership skills, information, and education in disabilities
  • Can commit to Friday afternoon training sessions for the academic year
  • Is available to work on a leadership project with a team

Family Mentor

A family mentor is an individual who:

  • Has a family member with a special health care need
  • Wants to share his or her family perspective and stories with trainees
  • Can commit to mentoring a professional trainee during the academic year
  • Is available to meet with a professional trainee four times during the year

Wyoming Assistive Technology Advisory Council

Positions available: Assistive technology users, family member representatives of assistive technology users

Support: Accommodations as needed, reimbursement for meeting expenses

How to join: If you would like to become a member of the AT Advisory Council, please contact committee chair Chele Porter at rokoranch@gmail.com

WIND is home to Wyoming’s state assistive technology (AT) program. To ensure our assistive technology activities are consumer-responsive, consumer-driven, an Assistive Technology Advisory Council to assists with the planning, implementation, and evaluation of WIND AT programs. The council is made up of at least 50% primary users of AT or member of a family that includes an AT user. WIND is currently looking for family members and assistive technology users for this councils.

Members of this committee are expected to:

  • Attend one stakeholder meeting a year in-person in Laramie, Wyoming
  • Provide input on sub-committees, activities and projects between meetings, as requested, via distance communication
  • Contribute personal experience and experience in meetings and strategic planning

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Wyoming Institute for Disabilities

Dept. 4298; 1000 E. University Ave.

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-2761

Toll Free: (888) 989-9463

TeleType: (800) 908-7011

Fax: (307) 766-2763

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