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Kids As Self Advocates (KASA)

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Kids As Self Advocates (KASA)

Tyler was one of nine youth selected to join a national council, Kids As Self Advocates (KASA). KASA was sponsored and supported by Family Voices. KASA was a national, grassroots project created by youth with disabilities for youth.

The group provided information and support for youth so they could make choices and advocate for themselves. KASA members were leaders in their communities, and spread helpful, positive information among their peers to increase knowledge around different issues, and to help each other succeed. They also helped health care professionals, policy makers, and other adults in their communities understand what it is like to be a youth with a disability.

KASA met several times a year, researched needs of the disability community, and prepared documents to address and resolve those needs. KASA has now been replaced by Youth As Self Advocates (YASA). Tyler and his KASA family met and marched in the Chicago Disability Pride parade and spoke up and out on many pressing issues.

From the Family Voices website: Family Voices is a national family-led organization of families and friends of children and youth with special health care needs (CYSHCN) and disabilities. We connect a network of family organizations across the United States that provide support to families of CYSHCN. We promote partnership with families at all levels of health care–individual and policy decision-making levels—in order to improve health care services and policies for children. Youth as Self Advocates (YASA), formerly known as Kids as Self Advocates, is a national advisory board of teen and young adult leaders with disabilities who represent diverse races and cultures, have different disabilities and health care needs, and come from different regions of the country.

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