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Your UCP: National September 11, 2003
Media & Public Awareness

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UCP Pittsburgh Executive Director to Be Keynote Speaker at CARF's Annual ECS Conference

Keynote speaker Al Condeluci to show how cultural shifting can bridge persons with disabilities to mainstream community

Tucson, Ariz. - December 19, 2001 - "New Directions: Stepping Outside the Box" is the theme of CARF’s employment and community services international conference February 16–19, 2002. More than 400 professionals are expected at the annual conference sponsored by CARF at the Tucson Marriott University Park Hotel. A preconference introduction to CARF accreditation on February 15–16 will round out five days of CARF conference activities.

Al Condeluci, Ph.D., opens the conference on Saturday afternoon, February 16, with a keynote address that looks at "Cultural Shifting." Following the keynote, he facilitates a workshop titled "Building that Bridge to the Community."

An author of four books and longtime advocate for community building, Condeluci is CEO of United Cerebral Palsy in Pittsburgh. He uses the phrase "cultural shifting" to describe the process of new or unique items becoming a part of an existing community.

Calling on the metaphor of a bridge to illustrate how people find ways to connect with each other, Condeluci says, "The change agent can think about the individual with a disability on one side of reality, and the community on the other side. The goal for rehabilitation is to assist the person with a disability to move from being excluded on the one side to joining the community at large on the other side." His presentation will highlight four steps to accomplish the cultural shift.

Conference sessions highlight ECS accreditation standards for the year 2002, which will be applied on CARF site surveys beginning July 1, 2002. The standards are presented by CARF staff members and surveyors, followed with question-and-answer periods. The standards sessions are complemented with presentations by 19 authorities in the ECS field from across the country. They will present practical applications on issues ranging from self-determination, self-advocacy, and self-employment to ethical business practices and public information for service providers.

The preconference session on the afternoon of February 15, "Are You Ready for Accreditation?" will be tailored to organizations that are preparing for a CARF survey for the first time. The following morning, the preconference continues with the topic "Managing Outcomes for New Organizations."

Conference participants will be treated to a welcome reception plus daily continental breakfasts and afternoon refreshments. Poster presentations, which share best practices in the field, and vendor exhibits will accompany the reception. Individual and group consultation with the CARF staff members is available most days.

The $425 registration fee includes conference presentations over four days. The cost for attending the preconference over two days is an additional $150. Registrations postmarked after January 18, 2002, will be charged an additional $50.

Interested persons who would like to request a conference brochure and registration form may call CARF at (520) 325-1044 and press 2 from the menu options. Additional information and a downloadable registration form are also on CARF’s web site at www.carf.org/Events/InternationalEmployCommunityConference.htm. Registrations are accepted by mail or fax, and Visa and MasterCard are accepted.

The Tucson climate throughout February is generally mild. Temperatures typically reach a high of 68 degrees F, and, on average, less than an inch of rain falls during the entire month.

Accommodations at the conference’s host hotel, the Tucson Marriott University Park, will be available to conference participants at the special rate of $134 per night for single or double occupancy. To receive this rate, reservations must be made with the hotel by January 24, 2002. Conference participants should mention CARF when making a room reservation; the telephone number for reservations at the hotel is (520) 792-4100. The hotel, which has accessible rooms, is adjacent to the University of Arizona and within walking distance to shops, eating establishments, churches, and several museums. All hotel rooms are equipped with two telephone lines with dataport access.

Continuing Education Units will be available through the University of Arizona. Conference participants are urged to contact their licensing board to verify approval.

Source: CARF

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