2016 TASH Conference has ended
Each year, the TASH Conference strengthens the disability field by connecting attendees to innovative information and resources, facilitating connections between stakeholders within the disability movement, and helping attendees reignite their passion for an inclusive world. This year’s conference theme, “Gateway to Equity,” explores inclusive communities, schools, and workplaces that support people with disabilities, including those with complex support needs, in living a fair, just, and balanced life. Return to TASH website.



In the Company of Others
Kalamzoo, Mi
Sheldon Schwitek has been supporting people with complex needs in the United States and Canada for more than 2 decades. His early interest in person-centered practices grew out of supporting a young man with autism. During this experience, he was introduced to the founding members of the Marsha Forest Center (www.marshaforest.com) and became a facilitator of the processes of MAPS, PATH and Circles of Support. For almost 10 years, he worked closely with Judith Snow, a pioneer in developing circles of supports and helping to identify ways that others could discover their gifts and make contributions to their communities. For 20 years, Sheldon has been an integral part of the Toronto Summer Institute, helping to facilitate connection and community with diverse groups of participants. Sheldon has utilizedthe knowledge and skills he gained throughout his career to ensure the supports a person receives are focused on the unique preferences and needs of the individual and those who know them best. During the last decade, Sheldon’s work has been associated with The Center of Positive Living Supports (www.positivelivingsupport.org) in Michigan. The Center's work is dedicated to providing training, technical and mobile response assistance to those who support individuals with complex behavioural challenges across the state. The work of the Center has been concentrated on the importance of relationships in supporting people by creating what they call a Culture of Gentleness. This work focuses not only on supporting the individual with a disability but on supporting all of the team members as well. Sheldon’s wish is to bring his broad experience to bear in helping individuals, teams and organizations the best individualized supports to those who are the most broken hearted and present significant challenges to those who provide assistance. He believes that with the correct training and support, anyone can be supported and thrive in a community setting.