November 2017

Disability Resource Library November Newsletter


November is the time of year that many Americans celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday. We want to express our gratitude to all the people and community groups that dedicate time and effort into enriching the lives of people with disabilities. This month’s issue celebrates teachers, caretakers, employers and family members.

Featured Resources

All featured resources are available to borrow from the DRL
To browse more resources, click here.

Celebrate Parents & Grandparents –
Thank you for making us feel secure with love and wisdom

Words in My Hands
by Diane Chambers

Words in My Hands

This heartwarming narrative about the life-changing power of sign language communication is told by the author and teacher, Diane Chambers.

Bert Riedel, an eighty-six-year-old deaf-blind pianist, cut off from the world since age forty-five, discovers a new life through hand-over-hand sign. This heartwarming narrative about the life-changing power of sign language communication is told by Diane Chambers, Bert Riedel's sign language teacher. Diane finds her world transformed as well by her relationship with her unique deaf-blind student. Words in My Hands is a true story of their unforgettable journey.

A Leader’s Guide to Fighting Invisible Tigers: Teen Stress Management
by Connie Schmitz

Stress is something we all experience. But research suggests that adolescents are affected by it in unique ways that can increase impulsivity and risky behaviors. While eliminating stress from life isn’t realistic, young people can learn to control how they respond to it. This leader's guide offers proven techniques that teens can use to deal with stressful situations in school, at home, and among friends. Topics and guided activities include lessons on assertiveness, positive self-talk, time management, relaxation exercises, and much more. Filled with interesting facts, student quotes, and fun activities, this book is a great resource for anyone who leads teens who say, “I’m stressed out!”

Celebrate Parents & Grandparents –
Thank you for making us feel secure with love and wisdom

More Than A Mom: Living a Full Balanced Life When Your Child has Special Needs
by Amy Baskin and Heather Fawcett

image of book cover More Than A Mom

MORE THAN A MOM explores how women can lead rich, fulfilling personal lives while parenting a child with special needs. The authors' skillful blend of research, personal experiences and feedback from over 500 mothers across North America results in a book that is jam-packed with practical strategies, advice and reassurance for mothers trying to create more manageable and fulfilling lives. This how-to guide looks at the challenges mothers face at home, at work, and within themselves.

Grandparents as Parents: A Survival Guide for Raising a Second Family
by Sylvie de Toledo and Deborah Edler Brown

More than a million American grandparents today are the sole caregivers for their grandchildren, thrust into unplanned second parenthood by tragedies such as drug abuse, crime, physical abuse, divorce, abandonment and the untimely death of their own children. They find their lives changed, their finances challenged, and their parenting techniques antiquated and ineffective with this new, and often traumatized, generation they must suddenly raise. Offering compassion, encouragement and fact-filled advice, Grandparents as Parents covers everything a grandparent in this situation needs to know in order to cope with the practical, day-to-day needs of raising a child today.

Celebrate Employers & Co-workers–
Thank you for being committed to removing barriers and ensuring workers with disabilities have equal opportunities

Keys to the Workplace: Skills and Supports for People with Disabilities
by Michael J. Callahan and J. Bradley Garner​

cover fo Keys to the Workplace

With this hands-on manual, you'll get specific, step-by-step instructions for helping people with developmental disabilities find appropriate and fulfilling employment. Breaking away from artificial support models, the authors introduce you to the Seven-Phase Sequence, which fosters the natural supports that are vital to long-term job satisfaction and success. Including detailed descriptions of the roles of each person involved in the vocational support process, this no-nonsense guide gives you a wealth of practical strategies and techniques for teaching employees, analyzing tasks, motivating workers and collecting data on jobs and employee performance.

Check out Keys to the Workplace.

Accommodating Employees with Disabilities
by DBTAC Rocky Mountain ADA Center

This 28 minute DVD program shows common examples of how to recognize and respond to requests for job accommodations in job settings. As an employer, you already know that people are your most important business asset. Whether seeking new employees, or trying to keep a valued long-time employee, simple accommodations are often the best way to fully tap your "people" resources.

Check out Accomodating Employees with Disabilities.

Navigation Tips
Access to Assistive Technology

The West Virginia Assistive Technology System (WVATS) provides access to assistive technology devices and services to West Virginia residents with disabilities, including older West Virginians. Devices can be as complex as computers with screen reading software or as simple as Velcro used in place of buttons or shoe laces. If you or someone you know has difficulty performing daily tasks at home, work, or school WVATS may be able to help. Contact the WVATS program.

A Child's Champion

a photo of Jami Roginson and Claudia Raymer

Meet Jami Robinson and Claudia Raymer of the Ohio County Family Resource Network.

Jami is the Project Coordinator for Ohio County’s FRN. In her position, she works to connect children and families to resources and community linkages. Jami understands the importance of keeping families strong, healthy and connected to their community. Jami enjoys providing families the concrete support they need. She is grateful to have such dedicated caregivers in her local area and in the service providers that continue to participate in the Family and Community Support Council.

Claudia is the Executive Director for Ohio County’s FRN. She has worked with children and families since age 18. Her vast experience as childcare provider, school teacher, and child advocate has built a passion within her for parenting a child or caring for someone with special needs. She creates social opportunities in the community that make families feel comfortable while reducing stress and building protective factors. Claudia is the 2017 recipient of the Deborah Doleski Allen Champion of Children Award. Both Jami and Claudia treasure this quote by Anne Frank. "How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

Paths for Parents Program

Paths for Parents

Navigating systems as a parent or caregiver of a child with disabilities can be confusing and overwhelming. The Paths for Parents program provides information and support through three unique services in effort to empower parents in becoming real partners within the medical home.Services in this program include: The Disability Resource Library, Parent Network Specialists, and Nutrition Services. To learn more, visit

The Disability Resource Library (DRL) provides educational information and resource materials to individuals with disabilities, family members, and practitioners throughout the state of West Virginia.Resources available to loan include:

  • Fiction and Non-fiction Books (children, adolescent and adult)
  • Reference Materials
  • DVDs
  • Assistive technology devices & adapted toys
  • Teaching and training curricula
  • Demonstration kits and Medical models
  • Disability Awareness Puppets

With two locations and knowledgeable staff, the Disability Resource Library is committed to supporting parents, educators, and the general public in finding appropriate, quality materials and services related to disability.The libraries are free of charge for the general public throughout the state and provide an online request and mail-out service.

The Disability Resource Library is a collaborative project between the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources Office of Maternal, Child and Family Health, West Virginia Birth to Three, West Virginia Department of Education, Office of Special Program, and the West Virginia University Center for Excellence in Disabilities (CED).

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