I’d like to introduce you to the 5 Core Services funded by HHS that all Centers for Independent Living (CILs) throughout the country offer, as well as the unique programs Disability Achievement Center offers based on the needs of the local community. Please help us help others by sharing this information in hopes of touching someone in Pasco or Pinellas who can benefit from our services. Help begins with a phone call: (727) 539-7550.
- Information & Referral: Our bylaws require that the majority of our Board of Directors and staff must be persons with disabilities so we are who we serve! We are deeply embedded into the community and partner with many agencies, with current knowledge of available resources. When someone calls us not knowing where to begin, we do!
- Independent Living Skills Training: We teach the skills you need to live safely and independently. Popular topics include budgeting, shopping, using public transportation, cooking, job hunting, and emergency preparation.
- Peer Mentoring: We can all learn from each other, especially those with like experiences and we introduce those who would benefit from each other’s knowledge.
- Individual and Systemic Advocacy: We are passionate about our work to support the disability community. We help people with disabilities find their voice through Self Advocacy training and support their efforts for independence. On a systemic level, we have a strong voice in the Florida Legislature and support all efforts that advance the interests of all people with disabilities.
- Transition/Diversion: Change is difficult. Change is more difficult when living with a disability and can include going from school to the workforce or moving to your first apartment. Diversion is the effort to keep a person with a disability living in the least restrictive environment possible and out of a nursing home where one loses independence.
- Medical Equipment Recycling Program (MERP): We accept gently used durable medical equipment that we sanitize before giving it to someone with a disability who cannot afford to purchase these needed items. Items we accept include: wheelchairs, scooters, walkers, rollators, commodes, shower chairs, Hoyer lifts, and canes.
Disability Achievement Center partners with the Florida Association for Assistive Services & Technologies (FAAST) as a Regional Reuse Center and obtain items that improve the lives of people with disabilities through advocacy and awareness activities that increase access to and acquisition of assistive services and technology. As a Regional Reuse Center, we repair or refurbish equipment using FAAST funding for items such as replacing tires or batteries armrest, and handgrips wheelchairs.
- Consumer Equipment & Modification Assistance Program (CEMA): This our most requested and asset limited program where we use grant funding and monetary donations to purchase items that are not available through MERP or items that cannot be recycled such as alerting equipment for the deaf and grab bars. Recyclable aluminum ramps are loaned to consumers for as long as they need them and we remove & reuse parts whenever possible to reduce costs. Currently there are 41 people on the waitlist, with an average wait time of 2 years.
- Diapers for Dignity: We provide incontinence supplies to anyone in need. Donations of unopened packages of diapers, liners, and underpads are always welcome!
- Deaf & Hard of Hearing Services: A staff member who is fluent in ASL provides a wide range of services to people who are deaf, hard of hearing or have other communication needs.
- Food Distribution: We partner with Feeding Tampa Bay to provide food to anyone with a disability who is not receiving food from other sources. We receive a variety of fresh produce, fresh and frozen foods weekly for distribution.
- PPE/Activity Kits: Face masks, hand sanitizer, and hygiene kits are available upon request. We also offer word finds, coloring books, and puzzles to help overcome isolation and keep the mind occupied.