November 29, 2016

New Research and Training Center to promote interventions for community living

A drawing of two cartoon houses. In collaboration with the University of Kansas Research and Training Center on Independent Living, the RTC: Rural has been awarded a five-year contract to start the new Research and Training Center on Promoting Interventions for Community Living (RRTC/PICL).

The new RTC will focus on two interventions, called “Home Base” and “Out and About.” The goal of both interventions is to increase the community participation of people with disabilities.

“We are working to level the playing field so people with disabilities have the same opportunities as everyone else to get into the community to pursue their goals,” said project Co-Director Craig Ravesloot.

The first intervention, called “Home Base,” will work with clients to improve the usability of their homes. Lillie Greiman, Project Director at RTC:Rural, is directing the Home Base project. “Community participation begins at home,” said Greiman. Even small home improvements, like installing grab bars in the bathroom, can give a person more time and energy for community participation. This could mean joining a social group or going to the movies, but also grocery shopping and attending appointments.

Home Base will partner with two local Centers for Independent Living (CILs): Summit Independent Living Center, Inc., in Missoula, and The Whole Person, in Kansas City, Missouri. Each CIL will work with their clients to carry out the intervention, with support from the RRTC/PICL. The RTC: Rural will work primarily on the Home Base intervention.

“Out and About,” the second intervention, will focus on setting community participation goals and problem solving community barrier issues.

The two interventions will be developed and tested separately with local CILs for the first two years of the grant, then integrated and tested nationally. The end goal is to create tools that service providers can use to help increase community participation by people with disabilities.

For more information, see the Home Base project page.