This project focuses on the development of a resource for adolescents as they gain more responsibility for their own lives. In an earlier project, CanChild researchers worked collaboratively with parents from the Hamilton Family Network to develop and evaluate an Information KIT, which became The Parent KIT: "Keeping It Together", to help parents to give, get, and organize information about their children and youth with special needs. During the evaluation, many parents and youth advocated for the development of another KIT specifically for young people with disabilities in their transition from adolescence into adulthood.
The purpose of this study is to obtain the ideas, perspectives, and needs of youth with disabilities, parents, and service providers for the content and design of the Youth version of the KIT (Keeping It Together), and to test the utility of the Youth KIT for youth with multiple exceptionalities.
Principal Investigators: Debra Stewart MSc,
Co-investigators: Mary Law, PhD, Cheryl Missiuna PhD, Jan Burke-Gaffney BA, Matt Freeman MA, Lorie Shimmell MSc, Salina Jaffer.
Research Assistant: Carrie Leo
Easter Seals 2003 - 2005
Pollock Foundation 2006 - 2009
Inkind funding support from CanChild and Hamilton Family Network
The ultimate outcomes of the Youth KIT are:
- Increased autonomy of youth in the collection and dissemination of information;
- Increased knowledge of personal strengths and assets on the part of youth;
- Introduction to future adult roles for youth and the benefits of planning for the future; and
- Development over time of a greater understanding of the interest areas and activities most important to youth with disabilities when planning for their future.
The outcomes for this project are:
- a Youth KIT that has been developed and tested by youth with disabilities, that meets their needs for giving, getting and organizing information during adolescence and the transition to adulthood; and
- information on use and utility of the Youth KIT that can be used to develop educational materials.
The Parent KIT
2007 EACD Conference: Development and Evaluation of the Youth KIT
2008 Bloorview Transitions Conference 4: The Youth K.I.T.: Exploring the Adolescent Perspective, Toronto Ontario.