FixPat is a concept inspired by observations of the gaps in the infrastructure of the systems of care and the fragmented access points in this care system that disproportionately negatively impacts the quality of life of children and adults with disabilities, including those with mental health conditions. There are trauma spots through many transitions in human development across the lifespan, and for vulnerable families with intersectional identities that include the needs of multigenerational households, the dysfunctions within and amongst the systems of care create new traumas.
The short-term vision for FixPat is to provide support for families with young children, recognizing that disabilities exist amongst multiple members, and amongst multiple generations. Also, in cases where the parent, or caregiver, may not be disabled, they still face significant barriers as a supporter of their child, spouse or other close relative in a child’s life that require functional systems in order to achieve a high quality of life. Additionally, disabled parents face unique challenges and barriers in their caregiving that would manifest whether or not their child does not have a disability. For these reasons, FixPat as a start-up nonprofit organization focuses on the systems of care, focuses on early childhood, as the starting point in offering emotionally intelligent supports and services that promote neurodiversity and bring awareness to the unique challenges faced by neurodiverse pregnant mothers, disability self-advocates that are parents and families raising children with disabilities birth to 8 years old.
The longer term vision for FixPat is to expand our multigenerational approach to disability positive support and services to also include programming that also impacts the quality of life of grandparents, non-parents and the workforce along different industries that impact the functions of the systems of care. Our greater vision is to expound upon and establish inclusive cultural celebrations for all ages as an important step to increase disability visibility.
Our theory of change is that normalizing inclusion practices (e.g. the universal design for learning) are important steps for demystifying disability accommodations; and by creating programming opportunities for families, advocates and other key stakeholders to practice inclusion, this informs participatory democratic practices and shapes public policy. Additionally, with our guiding principles of justice, equity, (neuro)diversity and inclusion (JEDI), FixPat’s north star is that celebrating disabilities is a learning process which is part of the greater cultural shift for creating a more just and equitable society to affirm the diversity along the lines of race, class, gender and lines.