FULL CIRCLE: CAPACITY BUILDING INITIATIVE
Full Circle is a capacity building initiative designed to mobilize personal networks for people with disabilities. Full Circle helps people to expand their circles of connection and natural support in their communities, giving them more opportunities for meaningful and supportive relationships, more experiences, an overall sense of belonging and a good, happy life.
The Full Circle Program is an opportunity for people with disabilities, and their families and caregivers to learn more about the values, principles, practices and tools that they will use to build and nurture Personal Support Networks.
Personal Support Networks are groups of people who are in relationship with an individual and are committed to help them attain their dreams and life goals. Personal Networks can serve as a bridge between the individual and active inclusion in the community.
They can serve in many roles based on what the individual wants and needs, such as:
- Building lasting and valued friendships
- Cultivating unique gifts and contributions
- Being involved in the life of the community
- Having supportive friends to depend on for help
- Empowering personal choice and decision making
- Dreaming and planning together
- Securing and monitoring supports and services
- Assisting with finding jobs and place to call home
- Peace of mind for family members
In 2018 through 2021, participants were able to complete a self-paced online course, gained access to innovative tools and resources, engaged in one of two in-person Learning Forums and received ongoing mentoring and support. Even with the complications of a hurricane and COVID-19, FIRST shared information, educated parents and professionals and supported personal support networks.
Tools that were created from the initiative include Full Circle Planning Guide for Community Connectors, Full Circle Information for Families and Friends and Full Circle - Planning for a Good Life. Log into our portal and see these resources, worksheets and the videos of training topics.
FIRST is excited to have been a part of this initiative from 2018 to 2021 of the North Carolina Council of Developmental Disabilities (NCCDD) and also partnered with the ABCD Institute of DePaul University and Plan Institute, a Canadian organization supporting the work of Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network. Even though the funding for this project has come to an end, FIRST believes that this work can make a huge difference in the quality of life for the persons with IDD. The materials are available for free and our staff is available to share information. We are excited to offer trainings for your groups for a fee that we can discuss with you. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to connect with us.