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CAC Plans Fundraisers Across the State

Sue Reeves


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The Consumer Advisory Council at Utah State University’s Center for Persons with Disabilities meets regularly to discuss the CPD’s impact on systems change, advocacy and capacity building. The CAC also grants an annual Community Investment Award to a Utah non-profit providing exemplary services to people with disabilities.

In past years, the CPD has provided the funds for the award. Now, the CAC will be holding fundraisers across the state to raise money for the award.

Shane Johnson, associate director of development at the CPD, suggested the CAC start with a restaurant fundraiser in their communities.

“It’s a very simple fundraiser, and a lot of them have never done fundraising,” he said. “It gives them a high chance of success and it’s easy to duplicate.”

CAC members will approach restaurants in their communities to offer special deals in which the proceeds from sales during a certain time or with a certain coupon will be given to the CAC.

“It’s done here in the valley quite a bit,” Johnson said. “It doesn’t raise a lot, but if we do it around the state, it adds up.”

CAC members nominate Utah non-profits for the Community Investment Award, and then work together to choose a winner. It is a way for self-advocates to learn to work together and to advocate for others.

CPD consumer liaison Gordon Richins said the fundraising process will be a good learning experience.

“It provides self-advocates with hands-on knowledge and experience in fundraising within their community,” Richins said. “The exercise provides a great educational process for self-advocates through the solicitation of funding that is awarded by the CAC self-advocates to a Utah non-profit.”

All the funding raised during the fundraising portion goes directly to the Utah non-profit to support their programs.

Past winners of the Community Investment Award have been Active Re-entry Centers for Independent Living in Price and the Utah Parent Center in Salt Lake City.

About the CAC: The Consumer Advisory Council (CAC) is composed of individuals with disabilities, family members, representatives of government entities and local agencies who work with people with disabilities, and staff liaisons who advise the CPD director about the Center's impact on systems change, advocacy, and capacity building. The CAC is one of the primary advising and guiding bodies for the CPD.  The CAC members work with CPD staff to develop and approve the CPD's annual goals and regularly reviews progress towards their accomplishment. Members bring many different perspectives, ideas, and views to the council.  They represent the varied geographical areas and disability issues within Utah.

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