Health Research Advocacy and Engagement: Welcome!

Welcome to the Health Research Advocacy and Engagement Blog, and Happy New Year! On this blog, we will post monthly updates highlighting exciting news, and research opportunities. We encourage you to check back at the beginning of each month to hear what’s going on in the Ausderau Research Lab! You can also follow the Ausderau Lab on Facebook, where we will post a link to each new blog post. As you read each blog post, maybe you find that you agree with the author, or that you’d like to share another point of view. After each of the new blog posts, you will be able to make a comment or share your ideas if you want. To leave a comment, scroll down to the bottom of this page. Under the heading “Leave a Reply,” write your ideas in the comments box. You’ll also need to give us your name and email address in order to post the comment. When you’re done, click the blue “Post Comment” button! As soon as your comment is approved, it will be posted underneath the blog post for others to read. 

Foour first post, we’d like to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who helped us with the Health Research Engagement Toolkit. This toolkit is a how-to guide for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their caregivers to understand and get involved in research. We had over 100 people from around the country help us create this toolkit! We had the opportunity to work with community organizations, such as Board for People with Developmental Disabilities and Gigi’s Playhouse, as well as 54 development team members from Special Olympics Wisconsin, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Florida! We also worked with 45 working group stakeholder members from Wisconsin, New York, South Carolina, Rhode Island and Arizona, and 20 Advisory Board membersWe are so thankful for the huge team effort. Thank you to EVERYONE who helped us with this project!!! 

 Over the next few months, we will be highlighting the many accomplishments of our development team members. Coming up, we’ll share the story of one of our development team member’s experience working on our research team to create the READI curriculum. We’ll also highlight how another development team member has taken health advocacy to the next level by talking to lawmakers about the need for more research into how education about obesity prevention is delivered to individuals with intellectual disabilities. Our development team members have been doing a LOT of great work in their communities, and we look forward to sharing these experiences with you!  

The individuals in these photos participated in the READI (Research Engagement and Advocacy for Diverse Individuals) pilot modules. They gave us very important and incredibly helpful feedback that helped us make the READI curriculum even better. If you participated in READI pilot or another health research event and would like to be featured in a blog post, please contact the Ausderau Lab at ausderaulab@education.wisc.eduHappy Researching!  

Special Olympics Wisconsin Athletes: Steve Woodard and Tyler Wigington


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