APPLY ONLINE: Online Application

**Please read “Program Details” for an expanded explanation of the program goals and expectations of participants.**

Program Details

The Indiana Statewide Independent Living Council (INSILC), with support from the Indiana Governor’s Council for People with Disabilities, is proud to launch the first Advocates in Action!
Advocates in Action is an advanced leadership and systemic advocacy training program and practicum in Indiana that builds greater capacity within disability change agents. This program was specifically created just for people with disabilities in an effort to bolster the ability to affect public policy and foster social change within our communities and the state, advancing the independence, productivity, and inclusion of our peers with disabilities in all aspects of society.  

 Advocates in Action might be for you, if:

  • You are a person with a disability;
  • You have experience in disability advocacy and social change;
  • You have a commitment to broad, systemic and social change that recognizes the assertion that “disability rights are civil rights”;
  • You believe that systemic and social change occurs through multiple methods:
    • Serving your community by bringing the disability voice to the table in both disability and non-disability related organizations and entities;
    • Performing direct actions to bring attention to current disability rights issues;
  • Educating the disability community, the general public, and policymakers on issues that impact our peers with disabilities;
  • You would like to strengthen and advance your existing advocacy skills by refining your knowledge of communication, community organizing and leadership, and public policy education/influence;
  • You believe that personal and professional growth involves stretching your limits;
  • You have a commitment to disability justice that includes other intersecting identities.

Advocates in Action offers:

  • Intensive, highly-interactive training from leading national disability rights experts (with disabilities) on disability leadership & advocacy;
  • Mentoring from national subject-matter experts (with disabilities) on systems change, intersectional justice, legislative policy influence, leadership and professional/personal development, etc.
  • Ongoing technical assistance from program trainers and experts (with disabilities) in the field;
  • A practicum that includes required strategic group/individual project activities, the creation of personal systems advocacy goals, action plans with measurable metrics, and with hands-on training and guidance.

Advocates in Action strengthens and enhances:

  • Effective, solution-oriented advocacy skills;
  • Persuasive communications in conflict resolution and negotiations;
  • Knowledge of navigation of local, state, and national political systems;
  • Project planning and implementation;
  • Event & Grassroots organizing proficiencies;
  • Community-building understanding;
  • Effective leadership capabilities.

INSILC believes in the power of advocacy and recognizes that Indiana is not only in need of a stronger disability voice… Indiana is in need of a strong disability advocacy network led by individuals with disabilities achieving strong advocacy outcomes. In the current political climate, the lives and rights of people with disabilities are consistently under attack. We need an Army of Advocates (with Disabilities). The time is now for people with disabilities to have more than just a token seat at the table! It is time for people with disabilities to be truly heard and acknowledged and to be mentors, advocates and activists. It’s time for the “voiceless” with disabilities to empower others living with disabilitiesto BE THE VOICE and learn how to lead and become Advocates in Action.
People with disabilities are not a homogenous group. Advocacy is not a “one size fits all” approach. Advocates in Action will facilitate the development of the unique advocacy skills and passion each Advocate brings to the table so that each Advocate can reach their full potential and maximum effectiveness. The program and practicum will provide experiential training in the following focus areas of advocacy work: Community Leadership, Direct Action and Education & Awareness.
Joining Advocates in Action is a commitment to:

  • Attend five training sessions in the Indianapolis area over the course of 5 months. Travel, room/board, food and accommodation-related costs are covered by INSILC;
  • Complete task assignments, projects, and actions outside of sessions
  • Continue advocacy/activism work after the program ends by joining the network of advocates and responding to action alerts;
  • Continue to be involved in Community Leadership, Direct Action, and Education & Awareness opportunities, appropriate.

Participation in Advocates in Action signals that you are committed to being a long-term leader who works to ensure that you and your peers with disabilities help to shape the policies and systems that impact us. Advocates in Action is guided by the Independent Living motto, “Nothing About Us, Without Us,” and the INSILC motto, “Be The Voice.”




APPLY ONLINE: Online Application