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COLUMBIA CITY â€” The Navigators are all about empowering people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. At Passages, Inc., after a campaign and election of officers, attendance has increased fivefold in the past year.
â€śPassages has always had a group that met but now weâ€™ve got a name, officers and a mission statement,â€ť said Mary Hunnicutt, Passages director of supported living and admissions.
Officers of the Navigators at Passages are Tina Lough, president; Mike Parker, vice president; Nathaniel (Than) Boutelle, secretary; Connie Brockup, treasurer and Jonathan Morris, sergeant of arms.
The officers came up with a mission statement: â€śCatch the Vision â€¦ Capture the Magic!â€ť The mission statement reflects the clientsâ€™ ability to learn their rights and to speak about those rights and responsibilities for themselves and other people with disabilities.
It also enables them to help people with disabilities understand their rights, learn to run a self-advocacy group, encourage self-advocates to meet in this community, speak out to this community about self advocacy and learn to communicate so that others can understand.
â€śThe self advocacy movement is about making sure that people with disabilities are treated as equals, with the right to the same choices, responsibilities and chances as everybody else,â€ť said Hunnicutt.
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