A publication of Disability Network Southwest Michigan 
July 2016 
The LINK disability network logo  

Disability Network
Southwest Michigan
Office Locations: 
517 E. Crosstown Pkwy
Kalamazoo, MI  49001
(269) 345-1516

2900 Lakeview Avenue
St. Joseph, MI 49085
(269) 985-0111

Toll Free:
 (877) 674-5209 
Serving 8 counties in
Southwest Michigan:
Mission Statement 
We educate and connect people with disabilities to resources while advocating social change. 
Vision Statement 
Our vision is a community that values disability as human diversity, free of attitudinal barriers, where all people benefit with full access and inclusion. 
Disability Network
The LINK is our quarterly newsletter with information about Disability Network events and programing, as well as general information and updates about disability issues. 
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Join Us to Celebrate the 26th Anniversary
of the ADA!

group of people under a tent Disability Network Southwest Michigan will host a community-wide celebration of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act, now in its 26th year. Please join us on July 22 at our Kalamazoo office (517 E. Crosstown Parkway) from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. for a free barbecue lunch, presentations and awards ceremony. Continue Reading
ADA Compliance Services
ADA Accessibility Assistance Ensures Access for All!
man in wheelchair on park path Disability Network Southwest Michigan offers ADA Compliance Assistance services. Staff and volunteers work with businesses, organizations, and municipalities to determine if their public spaces are fully accessible and give recommendations for improved accessibility. The level of service involved can range from answering questions on the phone, to doing an on-site visit and providing recommendations, to a full accessibility audit report.

Disability Network's annual Ramp-a-Thon kicks off at the ADA Celebration on July 22. Ramp-a-Thon raises money to construct or purchase ramps for people with mobility disabilities across our service area. Imagine the difference a ramp makes to someone who needs one. The difference between getting to their mailbox, or not; getting to a doctor's appointment, or not; socializing with others or not; being a vibrant part of their community, or not.

Please consider a donation to Ramp-a-Thon between now and August 31. You can donate online or drop a check in the mail to:
Ramp-a-Thon / Disability Network
517 E. Crosstown Parkway, Kalamazoo, MI 49001

Or bring your checkbook to our ADA celebration on July 22 and help us kick off the campaign in person!
Information Resource for Benefits
MMAP is Michigan's State Health Insurance Assistance program (SHIP) and Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP). MMAP provides local help for people with Medicare and Medicaid as well as those participating in MI Health Link plans. For answers to general questions about MI Health Link enrollment options or assistance regarding Medicare and Medicaid, you can call MMAP at 1-800-803-7174 or find them online at www.mmapinc.org.
Financial Assistance for A.T. Devices
The Assistive Technology Loan Fund (ATLF) is available to help people pay for tools for independence. The ATLF is a low interest loan available to people with disabilities and their family members to help purchase items like wheelchair-accessible vehicles, hearing aids, mobility devices, communication devices, or adapted recreation equipment. The ATLF can also pay for home modifications, including ramps, to make your home more accessible. For more information, contact Lewis Whalen (269) 345-1516 x107
Lunchtime Book Club

Wednesday, September 7, 12:00 noon - 1:30 p.m. (Kalamazoo & St. Joseph)

Icy Sparks by Gwyn Hyman Rubio
Icy Sparks book cover Icy Sparks is only 10 years old the first time it happens. The sudden itching, the pressure squeezing her skull, and the "little invisible rubber bands" attached to her eyelids are all symptoms of Tourette's syndrome. Whenever the impulses become too much to resist, she goes to her grandparents' root cellar and gives in, croaking, jerking, cursing, and popping her eyes. Icy soon becomes "a little girl who had to keep all of her compulsions inside."

For more information or to RSVP visit the Book Club page of our website.

Tuesday, September 27, 12:00 - 2:30 p.m. (St. Joseph)
Wednesday, September 28, 12:00 - 2:30 p.m. (Kalamazoo)
Concussion movie poster While conducting an autopsy on a former NFL football player, forensic pathologist Dr. Bennet Omalu (played by Will Smith) discovers neurological deterioration that is similar to Alzheimer's disease and publishes his findings in a medical journal. As other athletes face the same diagnosis, the crusading doctor embarks on a mission to raise public awareness about the dangers of football-related head trauma.

For more information or to RSVP visit our website.