Parish Disability Resources
Open Minds, Open Hearts, Open Doors
Sometimes, the disability isn’t obvious, as in the case of some intellectual/developmental disabilities or mental illnesses. If you observe behavior that you don’t understand, it is good to remain aware for possible need of assistance and be nonjudgmental.
A List of Books related to disability, caregivers, mental health, deaf ministry, disability ministry, etc. are available to check out from the Diocese Pastoral Center. Contact Patty Origer, 515-237-5073 or email@example.com
- Creating Inclusion Accessible documents review and training is available for free from Easter Seals Iowa Assistive Technology staff at, 401 NE 66th Ave. in Des Moines, Iowa 50313. Please call 1-866-866-8782 or 515-289-4069 (TTY) or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Guidelines from the USCCB Committee on the Liturgy Built of Living Stones: Art, Architecture, and Worship document that on p42-43 Accessibility section.
- Inclusive Participation Assessment Tool: LAMB (from NCDP) or purchase the LAMB paperback or Spanish version). This is a tool to assess and help guide the development and evaluation of programs, materials and/ or other resources for use in the Church, relative to accessibility or usability for all persons. LAMB includes the four categories of: Language, Accessibility (physical, social, learning), Meaningful Participation and Belonging.
- Parish physically accessible resource for the Diocese of Des Moines that includes contacts and resources for planning assistance to meet ADA requirements, financial resources and accessible signage.
| Assistive Listening Systems
Here are some resources discussing various types of Assistive Listening Devices that work with hearing aid types. Hopefully this will assist in evaluating needs and what should be considered when choosing a type of Assistive Listening Device for your parish.
- Assistive Listening Systems Resources/Vendors in Iowa is an information only resource of potential vendors in our Diocese and basic information from them to help start the process to learn about Assistive Listening Systems and options to consider.
- Assistive Listening Devices Accessibility Calculator provided by Listen Technologies to ensure your assistive listening system meets the latest compliance guidelines
- Association of Late Hearing Adults (ALDA) is an advocacy organization. ALDA is committed to providing a support network and a sense of belonging by sharing our unique experiences, challenges and coping strategies, helping one another find practical solutions and emotional support, and working together with other organizations and service providers for our common good.
- Gathering Sound strives to break down the barriers that lead to social isolation for people with hearing loss. Andrea Kaneb's motivation comes from her own triumphs over hearing loss and her website provides resources and advocacy for people with hearing loss.
- Hearing Loss and Assistive Listening devices from NCPD
- Hearing Loops vs. Bluetooth by Linda S. Remensnyder, Au.D.; President: Hearing Associates, P.C.
- Hearing Assistive Technology and documentGet in the Hearing Loop from Hearing Loss Association of America
- Hearing Loops and Telecoils: When will they become obsolete? from International Hearing Access Committee
- Hearing Loss Association of America--Omaha Chapter has resources including a locator system to find churches and businesses that have Assisted Listening Systems in their buildings.
- Infrared, Frequency/Digital Modulation, and Induction Hearing Loops: A Comparison of Assistive Listening Technologies, 2014
- Understanding Hearing Assistive Technology from the Hearing Loss Association of America
- Webinar on Assistive Listening and ADA/CBC Compliance. Webinar provided by Listen Technologies. The first half covers legal requirements of ADA/CBC, at 28 minutes it discusses signage requirements, and 31 minytes it describes different types of systems.
| Awareness and Welcoming
- Inclusion Tip/Fact Sheets on disabilities and related issues for inclusive parish life.
Child of God
Christmas Story Characters
Jesus is Born
Nativity set Touch and Talk
Three Wise Kings
- Pastor Tip Sheet (original document from National Apostolate for Inclusion Ministry – NAfIM)
- Pew Card for Disabilities and Pew Card for Mental Illness (Prior to printing add your parish name, choose two-sided print and flip on short edge) to raise awareness of welcoming persons with disabilities and mental illness in your parish.
- 3 Tips for Retaining Disability Ministry Volunteers. This resource provides idea of how to retain your volunteers and how to make sure they know they are appreciated.
- Sensory Friendly Mass resource of ideas of how to encourages parishes to consider adaptations to a current mass already scheduled to embrace and welcome members of our church with Autism, Down Syndrome, Developmental/Intellectual and other disabilities. The first sensory friendly mass was held in our diocese in May 2022.
Ideas to welcome caregivers and the people they care for at our worship and events.
| Caregiver and Grief Support Resources
Catholic Aging Ministry
This is a ministry for aging and cognitive impairment. We offer hope for families impacted by dementia through practical caregiving strategies and through the doctrine & tradition of our beautiful Catholic Faith. We are pro-life, pro-family, and pro-eternal life. Their work includes:
- One-on-one virtual appointments with caregivers for guidance
- The Peace with Dementia Rosary: Education, Intentions, Community
- Speaking at conferences and Catholic parishes
- Our community, including the Dementia Prayer wall for your intentions
- Daily FB videos, weekly e-newsletters, monthly interview videos/podcasts
- Catholic Caregivers is a program of the Friends of St. John the Caregiver. We provide information and material to help those who support and work with caregivers. We do ask that you keep the Friends of St. John the Caregiver copyright on any material that's distributed. Another sister site is Your Aging Parent which this site is designed for family caregivers. It's for those who are helping a: spouse,aging parent, child with special needs, sibling with special needs , family member or friend. Here you'll find spirituality, information and resources for Catholic caregivers. All the material and resources are free from these organizations that only ask for free will donations.
- Nourish for Caregivers is is a 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Created to improve the health and spiritual well-being of family caregivers...we provide faith-based programs and resources to churches and organizations to support caregivers. Our mission is to equip churches to create a spiritual home that ministers to the practical, emotional and spiritual needs of caregivers, giving them the tools and resources to help caregivers connect with their faith and encounter Christ, so that they can see the grace and blessings in their caregiver journey.
Nourish for Caregivers is a complete turnkey curriculum with all of the resources and tools needed to successfully implement an ongoing program for family caregivers. The Christ-centered materials focus on issues common to all caregivers, covering twelve (12) topics. Included are curriculum that cover subjects such as:
- The Caregiver Role and Decisions You Face
- Managing Family Dynamics
- Coping with Stress
- The Spirituality of Asking For Help
- End-of-Life Issues
We have three models available flexible to the specific needs of your organization: Traditional Model, Virtual/Hybrid Model and Healthcare Model. Read more about each program on their website.
- I Love You-When Someone you Love Dies and Healing the Hurtis a resource to assist individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) experience loss and grieve for lost loved ones, just like everyone does. When that person has a hard time communicating how they feel or processing complicated emotions, it makes it more difficult.
| Mental Health Resources
After Suicide: Seven Things for Catholics to Know (pack of 10) from Franciscan Media
- Association of Catholic Mental Health Ministry supports Catholic parishes and dioceses in establishing mental health ministries. Mental health ministries provide vital spiritual accompaniment for people experiencing mental health challenges and mental illness, as well as those who care for them.
- National Association of Mental Illness, NAMI Faith Net is an interfaith resource network of NAMI members, friends, clergy and congregations of all faith traditions who wish to encourage faith communities who are welcoming and supportive of persons and families living with mental illness.
- NAMI provides a brochure available for printing Being a Stigma Free Faith Community or a variety of pre-printed items for purchase on this topic at their store.
NAMI Compassion in Action: A Guide for Faith Communities Serving People Experiencing Mental Illness and Their Caregivers.
- NCPD Mental Illness resources includes a resource entitled A Pastoral Response to Mental Illness in collaboration with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. In addition to this resource, the council also recently revised their Mental Illness Theological Framework. Resources include supporting people with mental illness in your parish, prayers of the faithful for mental illness awareness and more.
- Parish Mental Health Trauma Mental Health Ministry Program Options.
- Pew Card for Mental Illness (Prior to printing add your parish name, choose two-sided print and flip on short edge) to raise awareness of welcoming persons with mental illness in your parish.
- Supporting Parishioners with Mental Illness (English and Spanish)
- Welcome and Valued: Supporting People with Mental Illness in Parish Life (DVD)This DVD from NCPD features in-depth looks at people with mental illness and how they participate in parish life. It examines the four aspects of recovery: biological, psychological, social, and spiritual. Parish considerations include setting boundaries, acute behavior, confidentiality, and suicide.