the coalition has four workgroups with distinct areas of focus. this structure has evolved over time. To view archived information about past workgroups, click here.


funding for services workgroup

Charge: Identify and implement coalition strategies to educate leaders and key stakeholders to inform decision-making about recommendations in our Action Memo regarding funding that supports family homes for children with developmental disabilities.


Data/Tracking Workgroup

Charge: Identify and implement strategies to educate leaders and key stakeholders to inform decision-making based on known data and data that needs to be tracked to monitor trends over time regarding (1) the use of congregate care by children with developmental disabilities, (2) alternatives offered to enable family life, and (3) uptake of alternatives. 


permanency/partner family workgroup

Charge: Identify and implement strategies to educate leaders and key stakeholders to inform decision-making about 1) the need for and benefit of establishing and expanding the use of partner families as an alternative to congregate care for children with developmental disabilities and 2) permanency principles to guide thinking about improvements needed in policies and practices to ensure family life, specifically including the use of facilitators to achieve permanency.

 


medical foster care WORKGROUP

Charge: Identify and implement strategies to educate leaders and key stakeholders to inform decision-making about the need for and benefit of expanding the use of Medical Foster Care as an alternative to congregate care for children with developmental disabilities in CYF care or custody.

For more information, please contact Katie Lewis, Coalition Coordinator, at klewis@pealcenter.org

WE WOULD LIKE TO EXPRESS OUR DEEP GRATITUDE TO THE FOLLOWING ORGANIZATIONS, WHICH HAVE SUPPORTED THE COALITION'S WORK THUS FAR.


The development and preliminary work of the Imagine Different Coalition has been generously supported by the Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council (PADDC). For more background on our DDC grant and the Coalition's evolution, please visit the History page of this website. 


Coalition meetings and work in the Pittsburgh area were supported by a grant from the FISA Foundation. 


Become a funder

If you would like to explore ways to support the Coalition's work, fill out the form below an we will get back to you.

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An integral part of the Coalition's mission is to help improve services and make more opportunities available to children with disabilities and their families. We share our knowledge and expertise with those involved in the public policy process and do so in pursuit of the Coalition’s Vision and Mission. Coalition members have agreed to advance our Vision and Mission in accordance with our Restrictions on Lobbying and Political Activities.

Non-profit organizations and organizations receiving funding through federal grants have legal restrictions regarding participating in lobbying and political activities. The Imagine Different Coalition is supported by the PEAL Center, a non-profit organization, using federal funds from the Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council.  The Coalition and its members educate, advise, or inform policy-makers, however, the Coalition and its members acting on behalf of the Coalition, do not engage in lobbying or partisan political activities.


Archived Workgroups

The Imagine Different Coalition had three workgroups until the structure was revised in December 2016. 

advocacy workgroup

Tasked with educating policy makers and other system representatives about the systemic changes necessary and possible to enable all children with disabilities in PA to grow up in families. The Advocacy Workgroup developed an Action Memo which describes changes that could be made   to enhance supports for families and funding that would better support family life. 

data workgroup

Tasked with increasing awareness about the number of children with disabilities growing up in congregate settings in PA and the kinds of facilities where children live. The Data Workgroup worked with state agencies and stakeholders to try to gather accurate data.

facilitator workgroup

Tasked with educating stakeholders about the potential benefit of developing a “Facilitator” role in PA modeled after its use in a project in Texas to help families of children living in congregate care settings to imagine and achieve an alternative. The role is described in the Imagine Different... Achieve Different! Workbook for Facilitators.

The Facilitator Workgroup developed a proposal for a pilot project to implement the Facilitator role in Pennsylvania.