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Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Serving Adults with Developmental Disabilities

book open on a table
Photo credit:  Pexels
Often times I hear about libraries that are providing programming in conjunction with an organization that serves adults with developmental or intellectual disabilities.  This is great, I love to hear about programs that are developed specifically with these adults' needs in mind.  I think it is interesting that often it is the youth services librarians who are asked to do this work, and maybe that is because youth services librarians have some skills and adaptability that make it easier to develop relevant and engaging programming for adults with developmental or intellectual disabilities.  At the same time, it's important to remember that they are adults, too.

There's a recorded webinar from Infopeople about inclusive services for adults with disabilities that I haven't watched yet, but it looks really useful, if this is a population you serve or wish you could serve better.

I recently heard about a national book club program called Next Chapter Book Clubs, designed especially for adults with developmental or intellectual disabilities.  The members get together weekly to read and discuss books together, with a facilitator.  Some of the members are already skilled at reading, others are not, but the environment allows for participants and facilitators to help each other.  There is training available for facilitators, as well as book club guidelines and resources.  It seems like a natural fit for libraries--maybe something to bring up with adult services staff as a possible project to do together!