Officially proclaimed in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan, Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month was established to bring awareness to the needs, potential and contributions of Americans with Developmental Disabilities. To honor DDAM, The National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (a group of 56 organizations across the U.S. who receive federal funding to support programs that promote integration and inclusion for all people with developmental disabilities) has established an annual, month-long social media campaign to celebrate progress made and encourage further discussion, asking: How can we ensure the inclusion of people with developmental disabilities in all facets of community life? What barriers might people with I/DD still face when trying to engage in their community?
This year’s DDAM Campaign theme is “Worlds Imagined”. As stated by the NACDD, “Our world is changing as we move beyond the pandemic, as we examine intersectionality and I/DD, and as we look at how people with I/DD are living longer and more productive lives. The ‘Worlds Imagined’ theme helps us explore new and ever-changing opportunities.”
WHO CAN PARTICIPATE?
We encourage everyone to participate in DDAM 2022! For family members, friends, employers, partners, and organizations like Cascade, the DDAM campaign is a great time to share stories, experiences and resources for people with and without disabilities here in our community.
HOW CAN YOU PARTICIPATE?
Share your thoughts and experiences with a large, diverse audience via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, using the hashtags: #DDawareness2022, #DDAM2022, and #WorldsImagined. Make sure to tag the NACDD (@NACDD) and Cascade Community Connections (Facebook, Instagram) so we can see and share your posts!
Need Inspiration? Here are some potential topics for #DDAM posts:
- Highlight what’s happening in your community, or state.
- Share the ways you and your friends/family like to participate in community activities.
- If you are employed, share something you like about your job.
- Tell us your thoughts on how your community could improve their awareness of I/DD.
- Share your journey/experience with independent living.
- Share your art! – the NACDD and DDAM are prominent supporters of the arts. Cool fact: this year’s DDAM logo features artwork by Calvin ‘Sonny’ Clarke from the Art Enables studio in Washington D.C.
This year, the NACDD provided videos, podcasts, and additional resources to help promote inclusion. Check out some of these resources below.