PATHS program seeks parents with intellectual disabilities to participate in advisory board

group photo of PATHS team standing in front of a presentation screen with a PATHS graphic

An estimated 4.4 million parents in the United States have disabilities. 

A new project from NAU’s Institute for Human Development is working to provide some of those parents with better access to the support they need. With funding provided by the Arizona Developmental Disabilities Planning Council, a project called Providing Accessible Training and Home Support—or PATHS—is developing resources for home visiting programs specifically for adults with intellectual disabilities who have children 5 years old or younger.  

The first phase of the PATHS project is dedicated to information-gathering. The PATHS team is assembling an advisory group of parents with intellectual disabilities whose experiences will guide the program’s efforts. The team is also asking home visitors—community health workers who provide parents with support, education and guidance—to share their knowledge and experiences of the home-visiting programs currently available in Arizona.  

In the second and third phases of PATHS, the IHD team will work with the advisory group to develop materials that will enhance home visiting services then design and provide training to home visiting professionals on those new materials.  

Participation from parents with intellectual disabilities is critical to the program’s success: It will ensure that the driving force behind PATHS is the voices and needs of those it serves.  

“Individuals living with disabilities are the experts of their own lives; they are full and equal partners in our project. Our role as professionals and researchers is to listen to their experiences and let those stories inform our program development,” wrote PATHS representatives Sara Clancey and Erika Capizzi in a statement about the program.  

Parents who wish to join the advisory board can contact Clancey or Capizzi. Participants will be given $300 for each meeting they attend. The board will meet twice before July for about an hour per meeting.  

Home visitors who wish to be interviewed about their experiences should also contact Clancey or Capizzi 


Northern Arizona University Logo

Jessica Clark | NAU Communications 

NAU Communications