Do For One is a relationship-building program that brings isolated people into greater community life. We selectively match one person with developmental disabilities (‘partner’) with another person who enjoys a more socially included life (‘advocate’).
We then support voluntary advocates as they strive to understand, represent, and respond to the interests of their partner.
WHY IS DO FOR ONE IMPORTANT?
People with disabilities are often
Decreased in social status
Moved involuntarily and separated from others
Excluded from commonplace socializing
Denied personal agency over their lives
Exposed to abuse and neglect
WHAT CAN ADVOCATES DO?
Share time with their partner in activities and conversation
Help their partner develop their talents and interests
Assist in achieving a goal their partner may have
Bring their partner into social, public, and community engagement
Provide a sense of safety and belonging through moral support
The relationships that Do For One supports are organic and mutual. Yet the uniqueness of the pairing – one person with greater dependence on another – invites challenges that can be unforeseen. Do For One staff remains available for ongoing support, brainstorming, coming up with realistic strategies for accomplishing goals, and provide advice as advocates define roles and boundaries in the relationship. Our support is customized to the nature of each person’s involvement with us.
Community is a place where people can discover, grow, and heal. People who are in community also share common interests, resources, and connections. Those living without community are often left to wasted time and potential, doing things the least efficient and most expensive way. We help advocates create communities that are self-designed collectives. By thoughtfully recruiting and assembling a balanced guest list of people with and without disabilities, these groups provide safe, comfortable environments for networks to form and strengthen.
OUR APPROACH IS NOT
To “do advocacy” as paid advocates | To supervise relationships | To refer people to information and services | A “buddy” system | An evangelistic ministry | An events service for people with developmental disabilities
Do For One is rooted in the ethical tradition of Judeo-Christian beliefs, specifically the inherent worth of all people. Human Rights is a modernized understanding of this value. It is through this tradition that we week the common good for people of all backgrounds.
Our vision is a future where the world is keenly aware of the problems people with disabilities face. That knowledge prompts radical personal action to address those needs. Inclusion replaces exclusion, as communities grow in strength and diversity.