Working with and for individuals with disabilities as they find their own voice.
Prairie Independent Living Resource Center, Inc. (PILR) provides the following five core services:
- Information and Referral Services (I&R)
- Peer Counseling/Support including cross-disability Peer Counseling
- Individual and Systems Change Advocacy
- Independent Living Skills Training
- Transition Services
PILR answers questions, on a variety of issues, from People with disabilities, family members, service providers, as well as the general public. In depth information can be provided on services and options available to assist people with disabilities to live independently, such as accessible housing, transportation, employment opportunities, personal assistants services, Assistive Technology, and a wide variety of additional topics. In addition, PILR staff is available to provide referrals to other organizations, which might also be of assistance.
People with disabilities assisting people with disabilities to achieve Independent Living goals. Staff, with disabilities, become role models, mentors, and advocates for people learning to live with disabilities.
PILR provides two types of advocacy:
- Individual advocacy focuses on the individual with a disability and services available within the community to assist them in living independently and to advocate for themselves.
Some examples of self-advocacy are
- meeting with a landlord to request a ramp to enter your home
- Attending an interview with social security to apply for benefits.
- Meeting with an employer to ask for more hours
- Systems change advocacy involves working together to eliminate barriers and make it possible for people with disabilities to fully participate in their community.
Some examples of systems change advocacy are
- Attending a city council meeting to advocate for funding for curb cuts
- Meeting with a doctor’s office to make sure they understand their responsibilities to provide sign language interpreters
- Meeting with legislators to discuss issues important to the disability community
Individualized skills training to enhance independent living in the community in a number of areas.
PILR provides Independent Living skills training to people with all types of disabilities to assist them in managing their own lives and live more independently. Training includes use of public transportation, budgeting, cooking, comparison-shopping, and many other areas of daily living.
PILR can provide 3 components of transition: “(I) facilitate the transition of individuals with significant disabilities from nursing homes and other institutions to home and community-based residences, with the requisite supports and services; (ii) provide assistance to individuals with significant disabilities who are at risk of entering institutions so that the individuals may remain in the community; and (iii) facilitate the transition of youth who are individuals with significant disabilities, who were eligible for individualized education programs under section 614(d) of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1414(d)), and who have completed their secondary education or otherwise left school, to postsecondary life.” In other words, these services assist people living in institutions, or who are at risk of going to institutions, tofind the services they need to live in their community. Services can also be provided to youth, who had an Individual Education Plan (IEP), who have graduated from, or left high school, as they transition to life after school.
PILR provides Independent Living Services to the following counties:
Barber, Clark, Comanche, Edwards, Ford, Harper, Harvey, Hodgeman, Kingman, Kiowa, McPherson, Ness,Pratt, Reno, and Stafford.
Prairie Independent Living Resource Center, Inc. (PILR) and its’ programs are funded in part through Rehabilitation Services, the state vocational rehabilitation agency in Kansas http://www.dcf.ks.gov/services/RS/Pages/IndependentLiving.aspx. Funding was comprised of State General Funds and Federal Funds. Federal funds are authorized under PL 105-220 VII Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. Program Title: Independent Living – State Grants. CFDA/Subprogram No. 84.169A. The contents and or events of PILR programs do not necessarily represent the policies of the U.S. Department of Education, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and or Kansas Department of Rehabilitation Services, and you should not assume endorsement by the State or Federal Government.