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Center for Independent Living of NE Minnesota
In This Issue

     Thank you for taking the time to read this quarter's newsletter.  We  have a lot of exciting things planned for Spring.  We are starting new Groups and classes  - please check them out at our website.  
We also are excited to have the Minnesota Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) hold their May meeting in our Hibbing office.   You can read all about what the SILC is and what their plans are for their visit to Hibbing in the articles below.  Please think about attending the Public Forum.  If you have questions, give us a call.
Enjoy this edition of our Newsletter!

Roberta Cich
Executive Director, CILNM
Minnesota SILC logo
     We are very excited to announce that the Minnesota Statewide Independent Living Council is coming to our Hibbing office to hold informational meetings as well as a public forum on May 9th and 10th.
What is the SILC?
     The Minnesota Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) is a statewide planning council that is not a part of any state agency.  The SILC works to promote the network of Independent living services through collaborations between State services, Centers for Independent Living and community providers.
     The 1992 Amendments to the Rehabilitation Act greatly expanded the role and responsibilities of the statewide independent living councils, in effect making them full partners with vocational rehabilitation in the independent living process.
     -    Work with the DSU (VRS/SSB) to develop the SPIL. (State Plan for Independent Living)
  • Determining the use of IL funds provided through Part B of the Act
  • Monitor, review and evaluate implementation of SPIL
     These new responsibilities (detailed in Section 705) provide councils with very significant authority in statewide independent living program administration--an authority that was lacking prior to passage of the '92 Amendments.
     Therefore, it is very important that people who are appointed to the councils be not just knowledgeable about but also have a real commitment to disability rights and the independent living philosophy--and their translation into the kinds of service programs and advocacy activities that are genuinely appropriate for independent living centers.
-         SILC members are appointed by the Governor
-         Members can serve up to two consecutive full 3 year terms  

     The statute specifically identifies five duties that the SILC must carry out:
     Every three years the SILC is responsible for the development of the State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL). The SPIL is signed by the chair of the SILC on behalf of the other Council members.
     The SPIL is also signed by the head of the Designated State Unit, usually VR, as well as the head of SSB
     The SPIL is then sent to RSA, where it is reviewed and approved by the Commissioner. The SPIL may be sent back to the state to be amended prior to the approval of the Commissioner.
     The SILC then has an obligation to "monitor, review, and evaluate the implementation of the SPIL." Each plan has a series of goals and objectives that the SILC must oversee.
     There are other duties and responsibilities that the SILC must carry out.  Please see their website for more information.
SILC logo
     This is a forum sponsored by the Minnesota Statewide Independent Living Council to:
  • Present a rough draft of the 2014-16 Minnesota Statewide Plan for Independent Living (SPIL) and get your feedback on the plan.
  • Hear what has helped you most to live independently in your community
  • Hear what issues/needs you see in your community related to people with disabilities and Independent Living.

When:  Thursday, May 9, 2013  from 1:30PM-4:30PM.  Come for all or part of the time.



Access North - Center for Independent Living of Northeastern Minnesota Conference Room 

1309 East 40th Street - Hibbing, MN 55746
(800) 390.3681   -   (218) 262.6675 V/TTY   -   (218) 262.6677 FAX

Peer Support Clip Art
     Peer and Group Support is one of the four core services provided by every Center for Independent Living (CIL) across the country. Our Peer Support Program has been growing here at Access North and we've expanded to train and hire new Peer Support staff in both the Walker and Brainerd offices over the past several months and have matched new peer staff with individual consumers and also have Peer staff co-facilitating support groups.

     All peer support staff are people with disabilities who want to assist others work towards their goals to maintain or increase their independence, which is what centers for independent living are all about!

     If you are a person with a disability who might be interested in this opportunity, or you know of someone else who may be, please feel free to contact Erin ( or 218-625-1400) for more information or to answer any questions! All Peer Support staff must be able to pass a background check and have access to reliable transportation.


Benefits of Peer Support Program

Peer Support benefits for consumers:

  • Provides positive role model and support
  • Interaction with someone who knows about & has disability related experiences
  • Greater opportunity to establish independence & self-sufficiency in a variety of areas.
  • Emotional support & encouragement to create change in their lives

Peer Support benefits for the Peer Support Staff:

  • Increase in self-esteem & self-worth
  • Improves interpersonal & communication skills
  • Provides employment experience & income
  • May provide positive change in own lives

Peer Support benefits for Access North:

  • Cost-effective means of service provision
  • Expansion of number of consumers served
  • Increase in the amount of consumer contact
  • Promotes consumer involvement

     There is no better time than right now to make sure all of us are prepared for the upcoming storm season.  From tornadoes and severe thunderstorms, to power outages and floods - it is wise to plan ahead before disaster strikes.
     There are special concerns when preparing for people with disabilities.  The Federal Emergency Management Agengy (FEMA) has prepared a brochure outlining ways to Get Ready Now. You can access it here. You can also browse over to to find out about resources for assistance and guidance.
Multiple Sclerosis logo
     The MS Walk and Health Expo will be held on Sunday, May 5, 2013 from 11:00-3:00 p.m. at the Grand Rapids Civic Center (1401 NW Third Avenue).  Registration is Noon-1:00 p.m. with the walk starting at 1:00 p.m.
     Walk MS connects people living with multiple sclerosis and those who care about them.  It's an experience unlike any other - a day to come together, to celebrate the progress we've made, and to show the power of our connections.  The Upper Midwest Chapter serves more than 17,000 people living with MS in Iowa, Minnesota, North and South Dakota, along with several counties in western Wisconsin and Nebraska.  Each year, more than 13,000 people in the chapter area walk together toward a world free of MS. 
AT Corner heading
Looky+ Visual Aid    
     The 3.5" LCD screen displays a clear image in 5 different modes: Full Color, Black on White, White on Black (reversed), Yellow on Blue, & Yellow on Black. Long lasting LED lights provide illumination for best image.  4 Levels of magnification and 5 viewing modes - Including full color & false colors.
     The Looky+ is equipped with a convenient folding handle that allows the user to place the it directly on the page or object. Folded up, it easily fits in your pocket or the handy carrying case. With the handle extended, the Looky+ works as a magnifier. The closer you are to an object, the larger the magnification will be.
     By pressing the power button once, you can freeze the image on the display. This handy feature can be used to steady the image. For example, while viewing a pill bottle, the magnified image can be captured in the screen to allow the user to record the information. The normal magnifier function is restored by pressing the power button again.
     Magnification levels ranging from 2x to 20x. Comes with rechargeable batteries, charger and carrying case with strap.
     Please call 1-800-390-3681 if you would like to borrow this piece of Assistive Technology from our Lending Library.  You can also email us at
tang fruit salad picture
     A refreshing fruit salad for all those hot summer days coming up!

1 large can chunk pineapple
2 cans drained mandarin oranges
2 apples, cut up
2 bananas, cut up
4 tsp. Tang
1 sm. pkg. vanilla instant pudding

Dissolve Tang in pudding and pineapple juice. Mix until thick. Fold in fruit.

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AccessNorth - Center for Independent Living of NE Minnesota | (800) 390-3681
1309 East 40th Street
Hibbing, MN 55746

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