Entry Deadline Extended for 4th Annual My American Dream Video Contest

National Disability Institute (NDI) recently announced it has extended the entry deadline for it’s 4th Annual My American Dream: Voices of Americans with Disabilities Video Contest to September 23, 2014. The contest encourages people with disabilities to share their American dreams for a chance to win $1,000, a digital tablet and sessions with a mentor to help make those dreams a reality.

Based on feedback, NDI elected to extend the deadline to give even more people all across the country an opportunity to enter and those hard at work on their videos more time to complete them. Voting and announcement deadlines have also been changed to accommodate the entry extension.

For more information and contest guidelines, please visit the contest’s website at dream.realeconomicimpact.org.

Resources for Real Economic Impact


Understanding SNAP Benefits

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides federal funds to low-income families and individuals for the purposes of buying food they would not otherwise be able to afford. To help families determine eligibility, the United States Department of Agriculture developed the SNAP pre-screening tool. Please note, however, the SNAP pre-screening tool is not an application for assistance. Individuals requesting assistance still need to apply through their local SNAP office. 


Business Resource Guide

The Employment and Training Administration's (ETA) Disability Employment Initiative (DEI) has created a Business Resource Guide with easy access to the most prominent tools and information such as the Career One-Stop E-Tools, ADA Business Connection, and U.S. Business Leadership Network, among others. The Business Resource Guide provides descriptions for each resource, when the resource may best assist a business and contact information as well as direct links to the resource. Download the Business Resource Guide and explore the wealth of information available to the business community.

Taxes and Tax Preparation 

Reflecting on MyFreeTaxes 2014

Join the upcoming webinar, “Reflecting on MyFreeTaxes 2014 - Moving Forward with Lessons Learned in 2015” on September 25, 2014 3:00pm-4:30pm EST. A panel of MyFreeTaxes affiliates will share their most effective strategies. Hear about growing a successful Facilitated Self-Assistance site, the benefits of a statewide MyFreeTaxes model, and leveraging community partnerships to strengthen tax campaigns. Also learn tips on how to more effectively collaborate with MyFreeTaxes core partners at the local level, including veterans’ organizations, American Job Centers, Goodwill and United Way. Register for “Reflecting on MyFreeTaxes 2014” today!

Financial Education 

Steps to Hosting a Money Smart Train-the-Trainer Session

Financial education is an important first step towards building assets. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) created the Money Smart Curriculum to help youth and adults outside the financial mainstream enhance their money skills and create positive banking relationships. Money Smart is free and not copyrighted, so it can be modified to fit the needs of the population you serve. Those who would like to utilize the curriculum are asked to participate in a full-day Train-the-Trainer seminar. FDIC provides the curriculum, training, and other tools you need to implement the training within your organization and/or community. Download “Steps to Hosting a Money Smart Training.”

Asset Development 

Asset Development for Individuals with Disabilities

The Assets for Independence (AFI) Resource Center is a one-stop source for information on the Assets for Independence program and Individual Development Accounts (IDAs). The Resource Center provides information on the AFI program and IDAs, how to apply for an AFI grant and how to administer an AFI project. You can also find tips and best practices including information on understanding asset development for individuals with disabilities. Visit “Understanding Asset Development for Individuals with Disabilities” at AFI’s Resource Center.

Public Policy 

Massachusetts Governor Signs "Real Lives Bill" Into Law

Last month, Governor Deval Patrick (D-Massachusetts) signed into law H. 4237, the Real Lives Bill. The piece of legislation empowers people with intellectual disabilities to make their own decisions on how and where they choose to live their lives in addition to determining spending allocations for state support services, including employment and residential services, assistive technology, therapy and other support services. Further, the Real Lives Bill formally codifies successful "self-determination" strategies into Massachusetts law, making support services more flexible and allowing people to tailor the level of support to their individual needs.

Read the full story in the most recent issue of NDI's Washington Insider Newsletter.

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Issue 8 - Sep 2014 

In This Issue

Entry Deadline Extended for 4th Annual My American Dream Video Contest

Benefits: Understanding SNAP Benefits

Employment: Business Resource Guide

Tax Preparation: Reflecting on MyFreeTaxes 2014

Financial Education: Steps to Hosting a Money Smart Train-the-Trainer Session

Asset Development: Asset Development for Individuals with Disabilities

Public Policy: Massachusetts Governor Signs "Real Lives Bill" Into Law

Program Spotlight:  Financial Wellness Webinar Series

Upcoming Events

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Program Spotlight 

Financial Wellness Webinar Series

On September 17, 2014, National Disability Institute will launch the fourth annual Financial Wellness Webinar Series designed to help people living with multiple sclerosis (MS) plan for their financial futures. Expert guests with backgrounds in law, finance and public benefits will share their insight on topics including taxes, employment, Social Security and credit. All resources and information presented in the series are tailored to address the unique challenges faced by people living with MS who require careful planning and preparation in order to maintain financial stability. More than 1,500 people registered for the webinars in 2013, which are made available free of charge with support from Acorda Therapeutics. To learn more, visit www.realeconomicimpact.org/financialwellness.

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Upcoming Events 

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