ELPIDA “E-learning platform for intellectual disability awareness”
Bianka Winterscheid Tel: 06081 / 44 25 65
Lena Herrenweger Tel: 06171 / 694 75 22
The majority of approaches targeting issues of intellectual disability (ID) are either focused on persons with intellectual disability (PWID) or on professionals in an effort to equip them with appropriate education and support strategies. The need to provide parents with the necessary information and skills in order to better support their children with ID is often overlooked. Parents, though, play a significant part in supporting their children to become active members of society and to have a good quality of life.
Through this project, organizations from 5 European countries will come together to produce an e-learning platform for parents with children with ID. The e-platform will contain 6 modules aiming at providing training, awareness raising, and/or attitude change and they will be covering areas such as early intervention, improving communication, abuse awareness, stress management, transition to adulthood, sexuality, aging, etc.
More specifically, at the beginning of the project, all partners will discuss and agree upon the 6 main areas. Then, a needs assessment study will be carried out in several European countries. At least 150 parents will take part in focus groups and/or fill in questionnaires in order to identify which aspects of each topic they would like the modules to cover. This will ensure that the content of all modules actually meets the needs of the parents.
Then, FORTH and HIOA will organize a staff training where professionals from all participating partners will take part in order to exchange and obtain the necessary knowledge and skills regarding how to produce e-learning material.
IB, Puzzle, EPA, and CSB will then produce a module in the area of their expertise, whilst HIOA, who has more expertise in this area, will produce two modules and also be responsible for the quality control of all modules. All modules will be translated and made available in English, French, German, Greek, Danish, and Norwegian making it accessible to many users. FORTH, as IT experts, will develop the platform and upload all material.
The platform will be free and parents from several European countries will be informed about it in group meetings, taught how to use it, and invited to complete the module(s) of their interest. Over 400 parents will complete at least one module, having a positive impact on PWID and their families.
In order to be able to assess the effectiveness and impact of the teaching content and methods as demonstrated through the e-learning platform, questionnaires will be created that all users/parents will complete online before and after undertaking the module.
The results of the research studies as well as the e-learning platform will be presented at the final event in Brussels, and the next steps will be discussed.
Stella in the German press
5 September, Taunus Zeitung
STELLA for Sustainable Independence
Oberursel The European Project also supports People with Disabilities in Taunus.
Developing a project and putting it into action is always a balancing act, as any parent, educator, teacher, nurse or social worker would confirm. The International Bund (IB) is currently working on a new project. The goal of this project is to create a guide book for conquering everyday barriers, so as to enable independent living for people with disabilities.
Imagine having to ask for help nearly every step of the way, every day. It's not such a pleasant thought. Because at the end of the day, we all want to be independent and able to make our own decisions. Why should people with a handicap or disability feel any different? That's what the new IB project titled STELLA is aiming to achieve.
STELLA stands for Staff's European Lifelong Learning Academy- in short, it's all about lifelong learning opportunities not only for members of the caring staff but also for people with impairments. The project will run for two years until October 2019 and is co-funded by the Erasmus-Programme of the European Union.
The goal is to develop a handbook which will serve as a guideline for staff members as well as being accessible and useful to the clients, the people with disabilities or impairments, as Anna Weckler explains.
Weckler along with Christiane Lensch and Christine Halas form the IB organizational team who manage the Stella project. Also part of the team are Markus Mäder and Meryem Krüger, residents of the IB independent living community project in Usingen, who offer many good ideas and proposals from the viewpoint of a person with disabilities.
In total there are are ten partner organizations from Poland, Greece, Italy, England, Sweden, France, Lithuania, the Netherlands and Turkey, working ion this project together, having become well acquainted during their work together as Karawane 2000 (Caravan 2000 Federation), Weckler adds.
Each partner organization assumed a subject area to work and focus on. The IB team have applied themselves to the chapter 'Organizational Skills'. This includes autonomously organizing a party, for example.
We subdivide each process into manageable steps which can be variegated depending on the event in question, explains Christiane Lensch, who is the project coordinator for international project management at the IB. The work uses checklists and pictograms for illiterate participants and many other tools. We have also conducted interviews with residents from the independent living communities in Usingen and Borkenberg, in order to find out what the priorities are for our clients regarding this subject, Lensch continues.
Further chapters of the handbook include Team Ability, Social Behavior, Analytical Thinking and Communication, and Technical Skills.
The first transnational meeting, in which all groups were able to meet up and exchange work results took place this April in Athens, Weckler says. The next meeting will take place this December in Istanbul, Turkey. By May next year, all the chapters have to be written as the final meeting will be taking place in Vilnius, Lithuania in September 2019.
The two residents Mäder and Krüger have already probed whether the primary work results of the IB work group are indeed transferable skills. At the Summer Festival of our living community in Usingen, we set up a cocktail stand, Krüger explains, it was a lot of work [to organize] but it was a great feeling, knowing that we managed it by ourselves, continues Mäder.
The STELLA project is steadily progressing with the transnational meeting in Athens proving a huge success and first results for the handbook are in production.
„STELLA - Staff's European Lifelong Learning Academy“