Family Support Research: Tell Us What We Need To Know!

Tell Us What We Need to Know about Family Support!

This March, the Family Support Research & Training Center at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Easter Seals are joining together to support a national research initiative Family Support: Tell Us What We Need to Know. From March 9 to March 30, 2015, a national dialogue will be available for family caregivers, individuals with disabilities, providers and researchers to provide feedback on the topic they think family support researchers should explore further. Whether it’s the practical day-to-day concerns about providing assistance; healthcare, transportation or education; or the financial, spiritual or emotional aspects of being a family caregiver, the comments provided during the survey period will be used to shape a strategic plan for family support research in the U.S. We look forward to hearing what’s important to you!

Family caregivers and others can participate in the dialogue through an online forum in English or Spanish by using a more traditional paper form or by phone. The online forum, IdeaScale, is an interactive platform using web-based software. Comments can be posted by anyone who registers on the site. IdeaScale provides a moderated, respectful environment in which dialogue participants can react to others’ comments or vote for topics they like. All ideas are encouraged. All dialogue participants will be asked for their zip code, relationship to family support, age range, and geographic area (whether they live in an urban, suburban, or rural area). Anyone can read comments posted without registering; however to post and respond, the quick registration is required. Easter Seals has used Ideascale for town hall-style dialogues for the past five years on topics as varied as veterans’ services, public transportation, and emerging technologies for people with disabilities.

Three ways you can encourage caregivers to participate and help spread the word:

1) Log in to the dialogue, read comments, register, and participate.

Visit the English IdeaScale website: or the Spanish IdeaScale website you can also submit your research topic verbally by calling (844) 781-4158 and leaving a message. Or you can download this form (click here!), write your suggested research topic and send it to

FSRTC c/o Dr. Sandy Magana
1640 W. Roosevelt Road, M/C 626
Chicago, IL 60608

or scan the form and email it to

2) Let your network know about the dialogue on social media.

Twitter event hashtags for the national event are #FSNeedtoknow and #AFDíganos. Friend Easter Seals on Facebook to follow news and updates on the dialogue.

3) Post this article on your agency website, Facebook page, or share in your e-newsletter.

For more information, contact:

Family Support Research & Training Center
Toll-free (844) 781-4158
Family Support Research & Training Center website:

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