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Center for Disability Leadership (CDL) - Youth Information, Training and Resources


Individuals with disabilities want to improve their ability to speak for themselves, stand up for one another, and bring about systems change. Unfortunately, many youth and young adults with disabilities continue to rely heavily on other people who determine how they will live, where they will work, and if they will go to college. Research emphasizes that when youth come to believe they can control their lives, they begin to exercise personal control and become active in making decisions that affect their lives.

The Center for Disability Leadership (CDL) provides information, training, and resources to increase self-advocacy leadership skills in youth and young adults with disabilities (ages 13 to 30) who are emerging leaders. We envision that youth and emerging leaders will understand their own power to make choices in their lives; will acquire skills in speaking up and planning for their lives at an earlier age; and some will become leaders in their respective communities and at regional and state levels, speaking up for themselves and others.

The CDL partners with school divisions and local, regional, and state agencies and organizations that involve, or wish to involve, self-advocates in issues important to their lives.


Jack Brandt, Co-Director, (804) 828-1365 or brandtj@vcu.edu
Valerie Luther, Co-Director, (804) 827-0195, or valuther@vcu.edu

Brochure (PDF)

Web Address:  Center for Disability Leadership