All of us at the SmartHome got new setups for our computers. The new setup has bigger icons, which makes it easier to click on them. It’s great that we’re learning new ways to help us use all the neat equipment we have here.
Also at the SmartHome we’re in the process of putting up pictures of some art we made in art class. They’re framed, and they look good hanging on our walls.
Many of us are going to participate in the Bolder Boulder again this year. We have to use our push chairs as the Bolder Boulder isn’t allowing motorized chairs this year, for safety reasons. I appreciate that the staff are willing to push us and to help us finish the race. I love all the staff who work here at the SmartHome. My favorite part of the race is just being able to do it with my friends. Even though I can’t do it by myself, I do it with my friends and that makes it a wonderful day.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Monday, April 26, 2010
Friday, April 23, 2010
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Here’s just a few presentation we have scheduled for the next few months:
On April 30, SmartHome guru Greg Wellems will provide an educational session on SmartHome Medical and Nursing Supports at the Colorado Association of Developmental Disability Nurses 2010 Spring Education Conference in Lafayette, CO.
On May 12, SmartHome project manager Sterling Wind will be presenting our SmartHomes Project at the National Association of Housing & Redevelopment Officials Colorado Conference in Pueblo, CO. He will be a member of their “Aging Gracefully in Place” panel.
Keeping busy, Sterling will then turn right around and head to Keystone, CO, to present May 13 and 14 at the Colorado Association of Homes & Services for the Aging Conference. The presentation title will be “Lean & Green: Breaking the Residential Service Delivery Routine.” Joining Sterling will be Hanni Ruehrdanz, Imagine!’s Staffed Sites Manager.
Friday, April 16, 2010
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Monday, April 12, 2010
The purpose of the grant is to allow the Imagine! SmartHomes Project to support an international campaign to educate the international community on how assistive and adaptive energy efficient technologies can provide support for the very neediest individuals with developmental or cognitive disabilities.
We recently presented the CEHF with an interim report on our progress, which has been substantial. Here’s some highlights from the report:
The short-term goals are to schedule and present the SmartHomes project to the representatives of Mexican and Palestinian (developing countries) and Israeli and Australian (developed countries) governments, seeking a letter of explicit support from each of these Governments, to the representatives of the World Bank Group and Global Environmental Facility (GEF). The long-term goals are to ensure the creation of a funding mechanism for the SmartHomes project by the World Bank or GEF or another international organization such as the UN or OAS. The ultimate goal is the provision of cost-effective programs, projects and services to many of the neediest individuals in the developing world, specifically focusing first on the developing country governments of Mexico and the Palestinian West Bank. The support sought from the developed country governments of Australia and Israel will assist in ensuring that the international community considers a project such as ours to be critically important.
In this regard, the project’s goals have not been modified in any way, but the list of countries approached has expanded favorably. The countries that have been formally solicited either directly to their governments, or representative organizations or agents, are listed in order and response:
European Union: In December 2009, we contacted the World Bank’s Special Representative to the European Union Institutions of Belgium and Luxembourg, Sander Sipos. Mr. Sipos made a formal introduction on our behalf to representatives in the EU who work on disability policy and to other non-state actors who work with disabled populations, but specifically in developing countries. We sent several solicitation emails to these individuals and received positive responses from all parties. Johan Ten-Geuzendam, Head of Unit, Unit 3, Integration of People with Disabilities, DG EMPL G-3, European Commission, Brussels; Tamas Varnai, Desk Officer, Gender and Equality and Culture, Unit 3 Human Development, Social Cohesion and Employment, DG Development, Brussels; and Celia Cranfield, EU Liason Officer for Light for the World, Inclusion of Disability into Development Cooperation. In all three cases, we have had phone discussions and emails about our project which has led to Mr. Varnai recommending that Imagine! apply to an EU Grant Program to support disabled and other socially challenged populations in developing countries; Ms. Cranfield recommending that we continue to look for opportunities with the EU and consider partnering with her organization depending on which grant opportunities become available; and Mr. Ten– Geuzendam initially inviting us to Brussels to give a presentation, but then needing to withdraw the invitation. These contacts are very important to our international campaign.
Mexico: We were able to meet with the Mexican Trade Delegation on Wednesday, March 3rd 2010, at 3:30pm in Boulder, Colorado to make a brief presentation on our international campaign to several Mexican government and business leaders, sponsored by the United States Department of Commerce. Paul G. Bergman Jr., Director for Colorado and Wyoming for U.S. Commercial Service for the US Department of Commerce, requested an email on our Smart Home International Campaign and a meeting at their offices with Imagine! to assist in supporting our campaign. A solicitation email was sent and a meeting occurred on March 9, 2010(please see below). We are awaiting a formal request from the Mexicans for further meetings.
United States: Because of an initial meeting with the Mexican Trade Delegation as facilitated by the US Department of Commerce (previously mentioned), a conference call on March 9, 2010 followed with Mr. Bergman, and his Senior International Trade Specialist, Lana Lennberg. Both were asked if they would support our campaign in Brussels with Mr. Ten–Geuzendam’s office and elsewhere. Mr. Bergman responded “that is our job”. He then requested a full email transcript of the correspondence with Mr. Ten-Geuzendam’s office in Brussels. They informed us that they are contacting the US Embassy in Brussels to further support our mission to Mr. Ten-Geuzendam’s office and the European Commission.
Australia: In January 2010, we contacted Mr. Kanthan Shankar, Operations Manager of the World Bank’s Sydney offices with a formal solicitation email and follow-up 30 minute phone conversation. Mr. Shankar stated that our work is noble and that he would discern if we should give a presentation at his offices in Sydney, once we had spoken with representatives in Australia and received their formal invitation. We contacted and spoke with Dr. David Hansen, Principal Research Scientist at the CSIRO Australian e-Health Research Centre, and we are awaiting his reply.
Israel: We have received a preliminary response from Mr. Martin Lampner, of Chimes International of Baltimore to assist us with local organizations for the disabled in Israel.
Palestinian Territories: Given the issuance by the US Department of State of travel restrictions due to the worsening security situation and the lack of new Presidential Elections that were supposed to originally occur in January 2010, we have suspended solicitation and follow-up with the territories. Once the situation improves according to the US Department of State, we will again pursue our campaign with the Palestinians.
Jordan: In January 2010, we spoke with Mr. Rami Ghanem, Managing Director of Al-Ghanem International Construction Supply Group. Mr. Ghanem works very closely with the Royal Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan on many international and local Jordanian projects. Mr. Ghanem is also an elected board member of the Jordanian Renewable Energy Society. Mr. Ghanem expressed great interest in our project and made several inquiries on our behalf with his government. He informed us in early February that he had received positive feedback from his government, but
presently there is interest to work only with Jordanian organizations at this time. Initially, he recommended that we contact Prince Raad of the Jordanian Monarchy (who represents Jordanian and Middle Eastern disability societies and has worked with the Special Olympics) but concluded that the state of the international economy was challenging Prince Raad’s respective organizations.
Netherlands: In February 2010, we met Bart Van Bolhuis, the Counsel General from the Netherlands and discussed our program. Mr. Van Bolhuis requested a solicitation email on our program (which was promptly sent) to discern if there would be an interest from his government for us to make a formal presentation. We followed up with an inquiry a week later, and he said “he was working on it”. Regretfully, in the last few weeks the Dutch Government collapsed because of political disagreement over Afghanistan and we made another inquiry. We have not yet had a response.
Poland: We met last November with Zbigniew Kubacki, Minister Counselor and Head of Trade and Investment for the Embassy of Poland, and presented our project. He requested we send him a full solicitation email regarding our project details. We received a positive response from Mr. Kubacki after he read our email in which he said he would like to work with us, to help us come to his country to give a formal presentation. We followed up with several emails and voice mails and will continue to do so.
Serbia: We contacted the head of a disability organization in Serbia this month, which is connected to the government. They believe that the ministry of health will give full support to our program and perhaps the government of Serbia itself. We will know more in the coming weeks.
Germany: We met last month with Stephan Meyer, Christian Democratic Union Party (CDU) Member of Saxony State Parliament and CDU Spokesperson for Environmental Issues, and discussed our international campaign. We sent him a solicitation email last month and he responded, “I’m interested in building a sustainable contact with you, therefore, if you need support or want to present the Smart Home International Campaign in Saxony, it would be a pleasure to arrange assistance for this purpose.” We responded that we are ready to come and give a presentation in Saxony on our project at his convenience and please let us know the best venue or individuals in which we should present our project. We are awaiting a reply.
Bulgaria: We met last month with Mr. Genady Kondarev, Consultant for Sustainable Energy Solutions, after which we also followed up with an email. He said he will look into the possibilities of our project in Bulgaria, but he felt that getting government support may be challenging.
Lativa: We met last month with Ms. Linda De Putane, Senior Investment Advisor at the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA), Investment Promotion Division. Ms. De Putane expressed interest in our project during our meeting, and we sent her our solicitation email. We are awaiting further communication from her.
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Wednesday, May 26, 2010, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
Program at 6:15 p.m.
Beverages and hors d’oeuvres will be served
1608 Otis Drive, Longmont, CO 80501
(Please park on the west side of the Safeway parking lot on the southeast corner of E. 17th Avenue and Pace Street. Shuttle service to the site of the SmartHome will be provided.)
RSVP by May 18 to Heather Sabo:
(720) 274-2265 or email@example.com
Thursday, April 1, 2010
Check out this old school video we made in 2007 about the SmartHome concept. Watching it, it is gratifying to know that now, with one house up and operating and one just built, we have still remained true to our original vision and are seeing positive returns for residents, staff members, and our community!