To see the new Self-Advocacy Video featuring members of SFO - Colorado, CLICK HERE!
How many of you believe in superheroes? I can’t wait to tell you about my superhero. Her name is Donna she doesn’t have x-ray vision, she can’t fly, bullets don’t bounce off of her, and she can’t lift 5000 pounds. She does have super strength, though. Her super strength is to be kind to others regardless how she’s treated by others.
Donna is a great example.
Donna Gunnison serves as secretary of the self-advocacy group People First of Jefferson County, and is a state representative of Speaking for Ourselves. Active in her community, Donna is also secretary of Rocky Mountain Partners Aktion Club and works at Target and Developmental Disabilities Resource Center.
Donna gets picked on like everybody else, but you know with the amazing part is? She gets back up, sweeps herself off, and talks to you with kindness. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been teased I wanted to get even. Donna does not seem to think like that. She is everybody’s friend. She likes to get out in her community and anywhere else she can go. She loves to sing--we all know this about Donna. She also loves her Zumba. If you would like to know a real life superhero you don’t have to far to look.
A Superhero Speech
WHAT IS SPEAKING FOR OURSELVES - COLORADO?
ENCOURAGING EACH OTHER TO BECOME LEADERS AND ADVOCATES.
We are a statewide grassroots organization of people with disabilities who want to SPEAK FOR OURSELVES on issues that involve and affect us. People First chapters from all over Colorado join Speaking for Ourselves to make our voices stronger.
We talk with each other by conference call each month and we meet quarterly in various places around the state. We have been learning our rights and learning to Speak for Ourselves to make sure our rights are not overlooked!
The members and board of Speaking for Ourselves act as leaders and models for advocacy work on things we care about around Colorado. We are available to speak to groups and individuals at schools, churches, civic groups and any location you choose....we can educate about our needs in all community settings.
We elect our officers every two years. We set the agenda of our meetings. We manage the budget. We have advisors who help us if we need it but we make the decisions. We keep learning, growing, and helping each other along the way.
Many of us are members of SABE (Self Advocates Becoming Empowered), the national and international self advocacy group.
WHAT ARE THE ISSUES SPEAKING FOR OURSELVES CARES ABOUT?
We care about human rights and social justice issues like:
**Real jobs with real wages, not jobs we may not like, have no choice about and pay less than minimum wage.
**To live as independently as we can. To have a say in where we live and with whom we live.
**To be treated with respect when we do need support from a program. To direct the kind of program we have.
**To be part of the community, not separate.
**To close institutions for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
**The use of People First language in all settings.
**Fair and informed treatment by law enforcement and judicial system for people with all types of disabilities. Representation in the legal system by membership in juries for people with disabilities.
**To have rewarding relationships of our choice.
**Full accessibility at EVERY location in EVERY community, with consideration to EVERY type of disability.
**To set our own goals.
**To have our needs, interests and choices considered by legislators in all levels of government.
Thought of the Week
Love is our true destiny. We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone - we find it with another. Thomas Merton
Next CONFERENCE CALL is
Monday, March 5, 2:00 - 3:00
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