USICD Annual Meeting in Brief
To the USICD membership and international disability community, I post this brief blog today as a follow up to our Annual Meeting held in Washington, DC this past Friday. Thank you to everyone who came to what was our best annual meeting yet. This was my third year putting on this event at the helm of USICD and it has truly become one of my favorite USICD community activities of the year. We come together around USICD’s development, to discuss advancement of the international disability field, to network with colleagues and visit with old friends, and to generate new ideas for realizing a global society of economic and social inclusion of people with disabilities.
This year was particularly special for me because we asked you, our community, to consider joining with USICD in a donation to our brothers and sisters with disabilities in Japan. Since the earthquake and tsunami on March 11 in Japan, the disability community has come together to form a Relief Headquarters focused on the needs of the victims of these tragic events who have disabilities. Our good friend in the Disabled Peoples’ International network, Shoji Nakanishi of DPI Japan, is the director of this effort and sent us a video greeting and message to play at the annual meeting. His description of the crisis and the valiant response efforts inspired us and we collected over $7000 in pledges from the people who attended our meeting!
It is not too late to join us in supporting the disability community in Japan’s ongoing efforts. Please visit USICD’s home page for information on how to contribute.
We will have a USICD newsletter out with more details and photos from the event soon. I wish to thank our guest speakers, Judy Heumann, Charlotte McClain-Nhlapo, and Med Ssengooba for joining the USICD staff and Board of Directors in this event. Everyone played a part in what was a wonderful afternoon.