hipnews Spring 2012 Edition
 
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Out of This World Dinner Dance
Thank You…
Welcome...to these 2012 hip Members:
Diana Stolfo Honored at United Nations Event
Looking for Ways to Give to hip??
Think Picnic!
Correction!
Focus on hip Volunteers - Adam Krass
SPECIAL ALERT! TECHNOLOGY EQUIPMENT AVAILABLE
An Irreplaceable hip Couple – Rhea and Carl Hess
Julie Gonzalez and Ralph Colon-Gonzalez: A Salute
A Community-Wide Salute to Volunteers
The GO VIRAL Action Alert!
News from LEAD
Camp Marcella Embarks on 65th Year
Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation CPR Training Given
A New Face At hip – Jayne Gugenheim
Bergen YES! & Parent Network Upcoming Workshop
AVL Facilitators to Don Their Hard Hats
A Travel Guide for the Young and Young at Heart
Need an Easier Way to Read?
Quick Guide Urges “People First” Language
Ruprecht Fund Grants Available
There’s Still Time!
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- hipnews Spring 2012 Edition Text Version -


  Out of This World Dinner Dance
  
 Out of This World! Dinner Dance Set for May 12 – Be There!

Will you be ready to beam up for hip’s simulated journey into outer space? Party-goers are getting ready to embark on An Evening Beyond the Stars. Lift-off is at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 12th, at the Fort LeeRecreation Center. Get ready for a fun-filled evening of dining, dancing, and entertainment, with DJ Gary Morton transporting us “to the moon and back“ for our “inter-galactic” fund-raiser. This is hip’s biggest annual event in support of our many programs and ventures.

COSTUMES AND “UNIFORMS“ WELCOME
That perennial question, “What shall I wear?“ is easy to answer, if you like to play the part all the way. Trekkies can wear costumes to fit in with the “outer space” theme – aliens are welcome, of course, as well as earthlings. But you can choose to “come as you are” and just enjoy the evening, while you wait for the costume parade, for which there will be a “surprise prize”!

How to reserve a place or a table:
Invitations have been sent to hip members. Please respond ASAP. Checks preferred, at $45 per person, $420 for a table. If you didn’t receive an invitation in the mail, don’t wait. Call Jayne Gugenheim at Bergen hip (201-996-9100, Ext. 21). Credit card reservations are accepted. Reserve by Friday, May 4th.

HONORING HELEN MARSHALL
This year, our gala will be held in memory of our much beloved former president and party organizer, Helen D. Marshall. A dinner dance fund-raiser for hip with an outer space theme was an idea that Helen expressed many times. This year we will carry out her wish – and we hope you will join us, to honor her and to have the good time she always inspired.
 
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  Thank You…
  
 hip receives many contributions from individuals and the community throughout the year. We thank those listed below for their recent exceptional generosity:

Stephen Cembrinski, for sharing his 1st Prize winnings from the Pot of Gold Raffle;
Roy Lippin, for his generous contribution in memory of his beloved mother;
Adele Cannie, Madeline Murray and Michael Cook for directing their United Way payroll deductions to hip;
Jean and Jim Csaposs, for their generous contribution in honor of their family.
 
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  Welcome...to these 2012 hip Members:
  
 Mr. & Mrs. Al Carney
Dr. Susanne Breckwoldt
Kristine & Beldeen Fortunato
Michelle Keller
 
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  Diana Stolfo Honored at United Nations Event
  
 Diana Stolfo took the stage at the United Nations on March 21st as a featured speaker marking the UN’s newly named World Down Syndrome Day. The date wasn’t chosen at random: it was selected because three copies of chromosome 21 are believed to be the cause of Down Syndrome. Diana was born with three copies of chromosome 21.

As part of the opening session of World Down Syndrome Day, Diana explained how she successfully works and lives independently in her own apartment in a unique community in Allendale. A longtime hip member, Diana has worked at The Gap for 12 years and as an evening receptionist at Our Lady of Mount Carmel parish in her native Ridgewood. Transportation is still a big challenge for Diana, but she doesn’t let that stop her from achieving her goals.

Joanne Stolfo, Diana’s mother, credits the Ridgewood school system for helping foster a sense of independence in her daughter. “Had she gone elsewhere,” Joanne said, “things might not have gone as well.” But above all else, Diana’s sturdy character and determination are the qualities that brought her to the UN on March 21st. Those who heard her speak were filled with admiration – and so are all of us at hip! Congratulations, Diana!!
 
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  Looking for Ways to Give to hip??
  
 In addition to always-welcome unrestricted gifts, hip suggests several other channels of giving that may appeal to our friends.
Laura’s Legacy, a fund created by the hip Board in memory of the daughter of Board member Lillian Ciufo, helps a family or an individual in need when the occasion arises. Recipients are identified by hip staff and Board members.
Tribute Cards to extend best wishes or congratulations for happy events, or to express sympathy, are available. The attractively designed cards are personalized with the occasion or a brief tribute noted, and the sender’s name. A phone call and a contribution to hip will send your card on its way to an appreciative recipient.
Our New Journey helps families in crisis who suddenly become caregivers to a family member who falls ill or incurs a disability. Former Board member Anne Ciavaglia McMahon created and manages this program. Call 201-288-2867.
Matching Gift Programs: Employees of companies that offer matching gifts to non-profits double their contributions to hip. You can also designate your United Way payroll contribution to hip.
Gifts to hip can be made using VISA or MasterCard (minimum $30, please) by calling Trish Carney, Director of Finance, or mailing your check to her attention to the Bergen hip office.
 
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  Think Picnic!
  
 JUNE 19TH FOR BERGEN
It’s time to mark your calendars for one of Bergen hip’s most popular events – our Annual Picnic. This year it’s Tuesday evening, June 19th, at the Englewood Boat Basin, 6 p.m. until dusk. The weatherman has assured hip that this year we will have beautiful weather!! The rain date is June 26, just in case the weatherman has a warped sense of humor. Think “NICE WEATHER”!

JUNE 26TH FOR HUDSON
Hudson’s annual Summer Soirée will take place at the Francis Burke Recreation Center, in Lincoln Park, Jersey City. Rain or shine, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Hudson hippiesare planning their usual fun-filled evening of music, dancing, great food, and lots of camaraderie. Watch your mail for details.
 
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  Correction!
  
 The last hipNews contained an outdated phone number for Transcend, the Hudson County accessible transportation service. The current phone number is 201-369-4320. We’re happy to correct this error.
 
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  Focus on hip Volunteers - Adam Krass
  
 Focus on hip Volunteers - Adam Krass Ends Each Month on a High Note
Everything you wanted to know about those gadgets – but were afraid to ask!

If you are a person with a disability, did you ever wonder if there was a product available, or some form of technology, which could be helpful to you? So many items now on the market are making everyday tasks simpler. A hip volunteer has come to the rescue.
Adam Krass, assistive technology consultant, comes to hip’s Hackensack office on the last Monday of each month. Adam is introducing a myriad of gizmos, gadgets, computer applications, and other technology to everyone who would like to enhance life at home, at work, and everywhere else. Upcoming dates are April 30, May 29 (a TUESDAY, because of Monday’s Memorial Day holiday), and June 25. Just call the Bergen CIL and ask for Paula Walsh.
 
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  SPECIAL ALERT! TECHNOLOGY EQUIPMENT AVAILABLE
  
 SPECIAL ALERT! TECHNOLOGY EQUIPMENT AVAILABLE FOR PEOPLE WITH VISION LOSS
Both hip offices in Bergen and Hudson have an array of technology for people with vision loss. Computers and scanners are equipped with voice, and large print applications are also available. Closed circuit TV enables people with limited vision to view everything from checkbooks, photos, and correspondence, to bills, newspapers, and more. Simply call either office for demonstrations, and/or an opportunity to come in and use the equipment.
 
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  An Irreplaceable hip Couple – Rhea and Carl Hess
  
 MEET THE REAL RHEA HESS – VOLUNTEER EXTRAORDINAIRE!!
Longtime hip volunteer Rhea Hess is one of those lucky people to have been born in Brooklyn! Her family moved to Fort Lee in 1944 to enable her little sister to attend a school for the blind in Hackensack.
While working in New York as a typist for an immigration agency, Rhea Silberstein met Carl Hess in 1947 at the YWHA. They married in 1948, settled in Fort Lee, and raised a foster child till age 12. Their son David, born in 1959, is a cardiologist in Long Island; he and his wife Robin have given Rhea and Carl four grandchildren. Rhea has a varied work history – including retail and catering, part-time and on weekends, while maintaining her home and raising David.
After retiring, Rhea volunteered for hip and the rest is history! She maintains the database, orders supplies for hip’s Multi-Media Transcription Service (MTS), and tops it off with annual chairmanship of the Pot O’ Gold Raffle. But this doesn’t exhaust the list of support activities Rhea performs for our agency. “We don’t know what we would do without her! “says Eileen Goff, hip’s CEO. Thanks again, Rhea, for being here for us for so many years!!

CARL J. HESS, A VALIANT AND INVALUABLE HIP VOLUNTEER
Carl Hess left his native Germany in 1937 to escape the Nazis. After reuniting with his family in New York the following year, Carl attended night school to perfect his English and opened a tailoring and dry cleaning business, which he closed in 1942 to enlist in the Army.
Although Sergeant Carl survived the war, after being shot while carrying one of his wounded men to safety, tragically his brother Herbie did not – he was killed at Anzio in 1943.
Carl received the Bronze Star and Purple Heart.
After the war, Carl opened a valet service in Hotel Standish Hall in New York City and returned to tailoring and dry cleaning; a friend made him a special thimble for his wounded hand.
Volunteering came early: for the YMHA in Washington Heights and for the American Veterans Committee. At the Y, he met Rhea; they married in 1948 and settled in Fort Lee.
Carl became involved in the Jewish Community Center (later known as Gesher Shalom) from its beginnings. He has served as president and executive director and still runs the morning and evening services, come rain, shine, or snow! He has also been a volunteer at Englewood Hospital for 17 years, several days a week. For hip, Carl sells many, many raffle tickets to support our endeavors and for many years has secured desserts for the Bergen County hip picnic.
We’re honored to know you, Carl!!
 
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  Julie Gonzalez and Ralph Colon-Gonzalez: A Salute
  
 Julie Gonzalez and Ralph Colon-Gonzalez: A Salute to Two Wonderful
Hudson Volunteers
by Kathy Wood

Julie Gonzalez and Ralph Colon-Gonzalez have volunteered their time and services to hip for over 15 years. They began their involvement with hip, shortly after their sister, Marily Gonzalez-Vazquez, started working at the Hudson office.
Julie is the supervisor for Comcast Communications Legal Response Center, National Engineering & Technical Operations Unit. She has contributed many hours researching disability-related legal questions on topics ranging from health care to immigration and citizenship for the benefit of hip consumers.
Ralph, the owner of E Z 2 Tow, towing and recovery services, has assisted with everything from arranging and decorating the Hudson office to installing air conditioners and transporting mobility devices for consumers. In addition, both Julie and Ralph have been with us many times over the years to lend a helping hand and provide support with the Hudson picnic, the Annual Meeting, and the holiday party.
Both of these wonderful people have their own work responsibilities, family obligations, and generally busy lives, but they always make time for hip. They understand and are committed to the goal of enhancing the independence of individuals with disabilities. By sharing their knowledge, skills and community ties, Julie and Ralph have made it possible for Hudson hip to provide many services that would otherwise have been unavailable. Like all volunteers, they are special people, always ready to meet the challenge.
hip thanks Julie and Ralph, not only for their efforts, time, energy and skills, but also for their compassion and flexibility. They are truly valued and appreciated!!
 
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  A Community-Wide Salute to Volunteers
  
 Pictured are Stephanie Thomas, long-time hip volunteer, and Paula Walsh, hip program director, at the Volunteer Center of Bergen County’s annual salute to volunteers in March. Michael Augustowicz and Larry Walsh, two other volunteers who enhance the operation of hip’s Bergen Center for Independent Living, were also acknowledged.
 
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  The GO VIRAL Action Alert!
  
 The Advocacy report for this issue is an Action Alert from the National Council on Independent Living.
From the Advocate’s Desk will return in the next issue of hipNews.
The GO VIRAL Action Alert!
The employment crisis for Americans with disabilities needs our action now.
Request President Barack Obama, SSA Commissioner Michael J. Astrue, and key Members of Congress to lead NOW to support American workers with disabilities.
Many Social Security Disability Beneficiaries Want Jobs Now!
Crisis Statement: The current do-nothing Congress and Social Security’s top leadership are failing Social Security disability beneficiaries who work or want to work.
The Commissioner of Social Security Michael Astrue recently announced that he plans to shut down Social Security’s vital employment support counseling services for its disability beneficiaries who make it into the workforce. Social Security has funded these mandated counseling services nationwide since 2000.
Social Security Commissioner Astrue to the US Congress March 9, 2012:
“Absent Congress’s reauthorization of these programs, we plan to stop them when the FY 2011 grants expire.” These employment support counseling services will end either June 30 or September 30, 2012, because of his decision.
Rapid Response – What We Can Do:
Just as the economy is starting to improve, the Commissioner of Social Security is shutting down SS Work Incentives, Planning and Assistance counseling programs (WIPA) and its Protection and Advocacy for SS Beneficiaries counseling programs (PABSS). Shutting these programs down means that thousands of Social Security disability beneficiaries who are planning to work, or who are working today, will have severely limited access to the correct federal and state rules and procedures for their work and benefits situations. With the shutdown, disability beneficiaries will have little to no help with complicated return-to-work rules when they encounter employment/SSA related problems.
Together, we can help STOP the planned national shutdown of the Social Security WIPA and PABSS employment support counseling services. We request that President Obama ask the Commissioner of Social Security Michael J. Astrue and the US Congress to lead, to collaborate, and to stop the counterproductive closure of these programs at the wrong time for our growing economy. There is opportunity as the economy improves to demonstrate that, as Americans with significant disabilities, we are part of the US economic recovery plan.
Key Request To President Barack Obama and to Commissioner of Social Security Michael J. Astrue:
“Like taxes, Social Security work rules are complicated! We request that you extend the current SSA WIPA and PABSS employment support counseling services for SSA disability beneficiaries for 18 months, as the Congress deliberates and reauthorizes the WIPA and PABSS employment support counseling programs.”
Key Request to House and Senate Leaders and your Congress Members: “Reauthorize the national WIPA and PABSS programs in all US States and territories for five years. The 1999 Ticket to Work Act’s mandated counseling services are foundational to help increase employment for Americans with disabilities who experience long breaks from the workforce, or who are starting work for the first time.”
For President Barack Obama
Contact: Gene B. Sperling, Director of the National Economic Council and Assistant to the President for Economic Policy. Email: gsperling@who.eop.gov
For Commissioner of Social Security Michael J. Astrue Email: Michael.Astrue@ssa.gov
 
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  News from LEAD
  
 News from LEAD, hip’s Statewide Program for Students With Vision Loss
2012 winter and spring activities demonstrate the true meaning of LEAD – whose full name is: Leadership, Education, Advocacy and Determination.
In early February, eight LEAD students traveled to Washington, D.C. to meet with legislators on Capitol Hill and present information of concern to people with vision loss. The Fair Wages for Workers with Disabilities Act of 2011, The Home Appliance Accessibility Act, and The Americans with Disabilities Act were all discussed.
Mid April was the time for the annual trip to the National Federation of the Blind Technology Center in Baltimore, for 30 LEAD students. The theme addressed Building Blocks for Success, with workshops on many topics, including the importance of having good blindness skills as part of one’s foundation, technology labs to learn about valuable devices, and preparing employment profiles. Student had an opportunity to network with successful people with vision loss in the careers of their choice.
On June 9th, the final statewide event for the LEAD season will highlight the year’s activities. Participants will share the benefits they have received through their involvement in the program. A barbeque, talent show, and lots of socialization make this a very special day at Camp Marcella in Rockaway. Twelve students will be graduating from LEAD this year. Activities will start up again following the summer break.
 
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  Camp Marcella Embarks on 65th Year
  
 Camp Marcella Embarks on 65th Year of Serving Young People with Disabilities
Camp Marcella in Rockaway, New Jersey, is looking forward to its 65th season of serving children and teens (ages 6-18) who have vision loss and other disabilities. Plans are under way for the upcoming camping season. Dates for the BVI camper sessions are July 29-August 4, and August 5-11. If you have or know of a child or teen who could benefit from the program offered at Camp Marcella, please contact Paula Tarantino for additional information and/or application: 201-709-4944 or via e-mail: pdgpaula@comcast.net. Why not visit the website: www.campmarcella.org?
Looking forward to a fantastic season!!
 
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  Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation CPR Training Given
  
 Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation CPR Training Given for Northern Region of Statewide LEAD Program
A long-awaited CPR training session for the Northern Region of LEAD took place in January at the headquarters of the Bloomfield Emergency Squad. Last year, the Southern Region had the opportunity to learn CPR methods and techniques, and the results were a huge success. January’s session was greatly appreciated by the seven student participants: Michael Clapcich, Alfonso Harrell, Shadiyyah Harrell, Carlos Herrera, Claress Knight, Salvatore Lopez, and Allison Van Etten.
The two Bloomfield EMS instructors have a combined experience of 45 years of teaching and performing CPR procedures. The training they offered applied to people of all ages, from infants to adults. All session participants were able to use the automated external defibrillator, AED, which assists with an electric shock to the heart. The equipment has voice instructions to enable non-professionals to use the device.
An explanatory CPR video was enhanced by discussion of all methods of CPR. Each student performed all the procedures successfully. The discussion encouraged students to think “outside the box” and begin to search methods, skills and techniques to perform many jobs. Vocational roles that can be found at an emergency squad were explored: a person with vision loss could be, for example, a dispatcher, an EMT, a presenter to organizations for fund raising, etc. These were just a few opportunities that a skilled person with proper training can qualify for.
This session was a huge success. In addition to CPR certification, each participant received an instruction booklet, a safety mask, and a greater knowledge of the importance of CPR. After the session, the LEAD participants continued discussion of the day’s activities over pizza at a local restaurant.
Student comments: “The training was valuable since I am planning to attend college in the fall and major in criminal justice. No one knows when the training will be necessary to perform.” Also, “It was great to learn. Recently, my uncle suffered a heart attack and no one knew what to do. After this training, I would be able to perform CPR on anyone.”
LEAD coordinators who participated were Joe Ruffalo and Jerilyn Higgins. Volunteers who assisted were James Ruffalo, Christopher Sabatelli, and Diane DeNotaris.
 
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  A New Face At hip – Jayne Gugenheim
  
 Jayne Gugenheim began her new position as Project Coordinator of Multimedia Transcription Service (MTS) in February. She is eagerly looking forward to working with MTS transcribers and school districts, to have all the necessary student textbooks transcribed into braille for the upcoming school year.
A lifelong Bergen County resident, Jayne has spent most of her career in marketing and public relations. Along with her MTS responsibilities, she’s eager to use her professional experience to bring more awareness to hip and to MTS. Jayne received her BA in Communications from Rutgers University, with a specialization in Public Relations. A resident of Maywood, she enjoys traveling, reading, spending time with family and friends, and is always up-to-date on celebrity news.
 
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  Bergen YES! & Parent Network Upcoming Workshop
  
 Bergen YES! and Parent Network to Co-Sponsor Transition Workshop
by Alanna Staton
IL Transition Coordinator
Youth Envisioning Success (YES!) and the Statewide Parent Advocacy Network (SPAN) are co-sponsoring a workshop this May about the transition from school to adult life. The presentation at 6 p.m. on May 8th at the Ciarco Learning Center in Hackensack will provide information on post secondary education options, employment opportunities, and adult service systems for individuals with disabilities.
Parents and young adults will learn how to access the information, resources, and support needed to plan for a successful future at home, school and in the community. At 6 p.m., hip’s transition coordinator will provide a brief overview of the services available through our program, followed by a presentation from SPAN from 6:30 to 8:30. A light supper will be provided To register for the workshop, go to www.tadbergen2012.eventbrite.com. Those interested can also call Alanna Staton at Bergen hip, Ext23. The deadline to register is May 4th.
 
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  AVL Facilitators to Don Their Hard Hats
  
 by Susan Vanino, AVL Coordinator
On May 17th, facilitators from the Adjustment to Vision Loss peer support group network will attend a training to provide them with the tools to build a stronger framework for the structure of their groups. The day-long event will enhance leadership skills and better prepare facilitators through workshops where strength and quality are the main focus.
Facilitators will be introduced to groundbreaking strategies and a virtual toolbox of invigorating ideas aimed at hammering out problems and nailing down solutions for working with their groups. Throughout the day, all activities are designed to increase the durability of the finished product, “the AVL facilitator.”
Program consultants Jim Warnke and Cathy Deats will be offering constructive ideas and expert knowledge in a liberating learning environment that will empower participants. Facilitators will be encouraged to turn their minds loose, to take a fresh look at the finer skills that will spruce up their groups
and allow them to tap into one another’s creative potential.
It’s important to have the right tools for the job. This year’s annual AVL Facilitator Training promises to provide group leaders with the set of tools needed to achieve overall success in their “craft.“
 
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  A Travel Guide for the Young and Young at Heart
  
 A Travel Guide for the Young and the Young at Heart
by Alanna Staton
Because I spent three years teaching in Africa and the Middle East, people ask me a lot of questions about what it was like living abroad. I decided the best way to answer these questions was to write a book for young people who may want to experience living overseas first hand.
For any young person with dreams of seeing the world, Home is Where the Plane Lands: The Young Adventurer’s Interactive Guide to Living Abroad offers a practical guide for planning an adventure overseas. With chapters on taking a gap year, studying abroad, avoiding scams, budgeting, and even dating, the book takes readers through all of the steps needed to make a well-informed decision about leaving home for a life of exploration in a new country.
Each chapter offers questions for the reader to consider, doubling as a journal and a comprehensive how-to guide. Also included are stories from people who decided to change their lives forever by living overseas while they were young. One chapter highlights my interview with a young man who was lost in the Amazon with his friend for six days with little food or water. His compelling story was also featured on Oprah and Discovery Channel’s I Shouldn’t Be Alive.
Available on Amazon or at Barnes and Noble, Home is Where the Plane Lands allows readers to dream big by offering sound advice from my own experience living in and traveling to over 20 countries.
(Alanna is Bergen hip’s Independent Living transition coordinator)
 
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  Need an Easier Way to Read?
  
 Need an Easier Way to Read? You May Qualify for a FREE Digital Audiobook Player and Audiobooks!
If you are having difficulty reading standard print, holding a book, or turning the pages because of a physical impairment, a reading disability, or a vision impairment, the New Jersey State Library Talking Book & Braille Center (TBBC) can help. TBBC provides free, personalized library services to New Jersey residents of all ages who qualify. This includes children, teens, and adults.
You may be eligible to receive a free digital audiobook player and audiobooks. All of TBBC’s services are delivered to your home at no cost to you. TBBC can provide these services to New Jersey residents as a network library of the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS), a division of the U.S. Library of Congress. TBBC is affiliated with the New Jersey State Library and with Thomas Edison State College.
AUDIO PLAYER EASY TO READ
The digital audiobook player available from TBBC is very easy-to-use. Each button on the player is large and has a braille label, and each button speaks to the listener. The volume, speed, and tone of the reader’s voice on the audiobook can be adjusted with simple up and down arrows to customize the listening experience. The player operates on a rechargeable battery and has a built-in power cord. Watch or listen to a demo of the player at http://njsltbbc.org/connect_with_tbbc. For questions or to apply, call TBBC toll-free at 800-792-8322, or download an application at http://njsltbbc.org/application. We also invite you to explore our website, http://www.njsltbbc.org, to learn about other available services. Read On!
– Mary Kearns-Kaplan
Adult Outreach Services Coordinator, NJ State Library
Talking Book & Braille Center (mkaplan@njstatelib.org).
 
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  Quick Guide Urges “People First” Language
  
 Quick Guide Urges “People First” Language as Part of Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month
In recognition of Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month, NJ Department of Human Services (DHS) Commissioner Jennifer Velez has released a “Quick Guide” to educate the public and media on appropriate terminology to use when referring to individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities.
The guide reinforces the spirit of legislation signed in 2010 by Governor Christie that removes disrespectful language referring to individuals with these disabilities from New Jersey statutes and regulations.
“Words matter,” said Commissioner Velez. “The use of outdated, derogatory terms is insulting and hurtful to individuals with disabilities and the people who love them. We’re hopeful this guide provides phrase alternatives that become instilled in the vernacular so we can eliminate the stigma of archaic vocabulary.”
DEROGATORY TERMS INSULTING AND HURTFUL
It is estimated that one percent of the U.S. population has an intellectual or developmental disability, representing about 90,000 people in New Jersey. DHS currently serves about 43,000 individuals through its DD division programs.
The Commissioner noted that despite sophisticated, nationwide public relations campaigns by a host of service organizations promoting People First language or denouncing the ‘R’ word, the message has not resonated as it should. “This is not about being politically correct,” said Commissioner Velez. “It’s about respect. Our characteristics do not and should not ever define us.”
Readers: To access the Quick Guide online, go to www.state.nj.us/humanservices/news/publications/PeopleFirstFlyer.pdf. Also, find NJDHS on Facebook@ www.Facebook.com/NJDHS
 
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  Ruprecht Fund Grants Available
  
 Ruprecht Fund Grants Available for New Jersey Polio Survivors
The Alan and Peggy Ruprecht Memorial Fund, launched by the Polio Network of New Jersey in the year 2000, provides direct assistance to polio survivors who live in New Jersey. hip has been the administrator of the fund since its inception. The fund has enabled a number of individuals to meet pressing needs caused by their experience of post-polio syndrome, needs that could not have been met without financial assistance.
In 2011, through a generous bequest from estate of the sister of a young New Jersey woman who did not survive the polio epidemic of 1949, the Board of PNNJ was able to increase the amount available to individuals once annually from $500 to $1,000. While income is a factor, it is not the sole criterion, since it is well known that it costs a lot to have a disability!
FUND NAMED FOR POLIO PIONEER
The Fund was named in honor of the late Alan Ruprecht and his wife Peggy, lifelong New Jersey residents who founded Drive-Master, Inc. Alan contracted polio after returning from naval service in World War II and finding that driving an automobile was a major challenge for himself, and certainly for untold numbers of mobility-impaired adults, many of them fellow veterans.
Goods such as durable medical equipment and services that might include medical evaluations for PPS are among the fundable items. Applications can be obtained by phoning Maria Valentin-Perez at Bergen hip, Ext. 18, or by e-mail: mvalentin.ber@hipcil.org. All grants are paid to the vendor or other supplier of the product or service. The fund cannot reimburse for expenses already incurred or pay for renewable supplies. All requests are completely confidential.
 
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  There’s Still Time!
  
 Reserve your place at hip’s Annual Benefit Dinner Dance: May 12th. This year’s theme: “Out of this World, an evening “beyond the stars.” (see page 1)
We’re also “off and running” for hip’s Fourth Annual Nifty Fifty. Take a chance yourself or with your friends.
See page 9 for details and a handy tear-off form. Drawing takes place on May 12th.
 
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