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August 16, 2023 | Issue 92 (View newsletter as webpage) Para leer este boletín en Español, haga clic aquí

Important News

SPAN Conference Flyer top image

SPAN Parent Leadership Conference - Outreach and Sponsorship Opportunities

Big News! We are thrilled to announce our upcoming 2023 Parent Leadership Conference and ask you to consider becoming a sponsor for this exciting event. Here are the details:

Date: Saturday, September 30, 2023

Time: 8:00am - 3:30pm

Place: National Conference Center, 399 Monmouth St, East Windsor NJ 08520

Every two years, SPAN Parent Advocacy Network convenes parent leaders from around the state to enhance their skills, network, and celebrate what we do. The conference will offer thought-provoking speakers and informational breakout sessions to provide attendees with the tools and inspiration needed to advocate for infants, toddlers, children, and youth.

Highlights of the day:

  • A panel of State Agency Leaders sharing updates and opportunities for family engagement. 
  • Breakout sessions related to helping families access services
  • Information on how to navigate family-serving systems
  • Youth leaders sharing their stories of self-advocacy
  • Strategies to ensure accessibility, diversity, equity, inclusivity, and belonging in our advocacy efforts 
  • Ways to improve self-care, wellness, technology skills
  • Select sessions presented in Spanish and some opportunities for simultaneous interpretation
  • ASL interpretation as requested
  • and more…  

We are able to do all of this, and offer scholarships for family members and young adults who need that support, because of generous supporters and careful planning to reach the most participants. 

In addition, we are kicking off the conference with an End of Summer Soirée on Friday evening, September 29, 2023.   

Find details about sponsorships, the Soirée, and other conference information here.

We hope you can join us at one or both of these exciting events and look forward to seeing you in September!


Family Voices survey findings infographic

How Families Want to Receive Vaccine Information

Family Voices is working in collaboration with the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) to disseminate general vaccination information to support families of children and youth with special health care needs (CYSHCN) and disabilities. The purpose of this project is to conduct local vaccine outreach activities in the disability community through the Family Voices national network of Family-to-Family Health Information Centers and Affiliated organizations and to increase vaccination among people with disabilities across the lifespan, their family caregivers, and direct support providers (DSPs) for older adults and persons with disabilities.

As part of this effort, they conducted a survey of families of children and youth with special health care needs and disabilities to obtain their perspectives about vaccines.  

The survey included questions about: 

  • how families like to receive information about vaccines
  • where children/youth typically receive vaccines
  • why people might choose to to get their children vaccinated
  • what might change people's minds about vaccinations

The survey results are summarized in the infographic available for download by clicking here.

2022-2023 NJ Survey for Families of Children with Intellectual and/or Developmental Disabilities 

NJ Department of Children and Families logo

The New Jersey Department of Children and Families has contracted with Rutgers University to conduct a survey regarding experiences of New Jersey families who have children with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (whether diagnosed or not). The survey is approximately 30-60 minutes long, depending on the number of children and time spent on open-ended responses.


Please feel free to forward this message to families you work with who may be interested (please do not change any language in this message). The survey must be filled out online by a parent/caregiver/guardian who is 18 or older.


Parents/caregivers/guardians may receive notice of the survey through multiple channels, but should not respond more than once. The link will take you to a page with more information about the study.

To access the survey, click here.

Upcoming Events

SPAN offers a variety of learning opportunities for families and the professionals who work with them.

Highlighted Event This Week

START School Board Elections event flyer




Monday, September 18


Wednesday, September 20

10:00 AM ET

Virtual via Zoom

What impact does your local school board have on your child's education? What does it take to be an effective school board member?

Join SPAN's special guest, author and education reform advocate, AJ Crabill, as he discusses how to transform your school board and empower members to adopt a student-outcomes-focused mindset.

We will discuss the importance of school board elections and what YOU can do to be a catalyst for better student outcomes.

More Information or questions: Stephanie Babits at [email protected]

To register, click here.

See all of SPAN's upcoming events with details and registration links here 

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SPAN 2023 Conference Flyer
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Depression In Young People

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