A Unique Web Resource Created by and for People with disAbilities to be Launched January 9, 2009

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January 5, 2009 (Fairfax, VA) –  Individuals with disabilities, their family members and service providers living in Northern Virginia will significantly benefit from a new website being launched this Friday at the Fairfax County Government Center. 
disAbilityNavigator (www.disabilitynavigator.org) is a unique web resource created by and for people with disabilities to improve access to and delivery of services for individuals with disabilities in Northern Virginia.  The website will serve as a dedicated resource designed to meet the wide range of concerns unique to the disability community.
“Our club members were delighted to play the role of test pilots, making suggestions for improvements before the launch as only those with special needs and special skills could do.  We were thrilled to be asked by Senior Navigator and The Arc of Northern Virginia to participate in such vital way.” said Donna Goldbranson, Founder and Executive Director of SPARC, an accessible club designed to support individuals with life-long disabilities in a community based setting.   “It’s great to see that real innovation and technology are being tapped to help some of our most valuable and vulnerable citizens,”
disAbilityNavigator’s database features thousand of programs and services, as well as hundreds of educational articles helpful for people with disabilities. The information focuses on issues such health and wellness, housing, community resources, benefits and money management, legal and civil rights, transportation and more.
Goldbranson noted that seed money to help develop disAbilityNavigator was provided by the Fairfax County Incentive Fund to The Arc of Northern Virginia and Senior Navigator.  The ultimate goal is to extend disAbilityNavigator community by community across Virginia to build a statewide one-stop-resource for individuals with disabilities. 
Donna also stated that, “In these times of financial downturn and uncertainty, it wonderful to see that forward thinking elected official and service minded individuals could come together and invest in the future.  It’s just as wonderful to see that their investment is paying off so quickly.  We need more of this type of private and public cooperation.  The collaboration on this effort is extraordinary.” 
Lead officials Kenneth R. Plum; Virginia House of Delegate Representative for Fairfax County; Cathy Hudgins, Fairfax County Board of Supervisor; and former Virginia Secretary of Health and Human Resources, Jane Woods will launch the unique website this Friday, Jannuary 9, 2009 at 9:00 am in the Board of Supervisors’ Conference Room (First Floor) of the Fairfax County Government Center Building at 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035.
For more information, contact Debbie Thomas (703) 324-2307, Tia Marsili (703) 532-3214 Donna Goldbranson at (703) 338-6185

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