Advocates at the capitol

Day at the Capitol

In the Month of March, SAAC participates in Day at the Capitol. SAAC members bring developmental disability awareness to their legislators as their teams visit each one sharing their stories, talking about their concerns and asking how they can help their community. SAAC leads by example to be seen and heard: One Vision—One Voice.

Advocates exercising in a group.

Guide to Healthy Living

Let’s get moving with our Guide to Healthy Living (GHL). This program was shared by the self-advocates at the Eastern Los Angeles Regional Center in California. GHL teaches how people how to fill their lives with—as SAAC members say, “good thoughts, good exercise and good food.”

All About My Empowerment (ME) Meeting

Families, Friends, and Community Networks and Trainings

SAAC opens the door of opportunity for its members by networking with family, friends, businesses and community agencies. They attend network meetings and provide information about their to the organizations. SAAC is developing a tools kit on how to lead your own meeting with All About My Empowerment (ME). Members also provide
education to transition teachers and teach advocacy to high school students.

  1. Footsteps to Transition
  2. National Disability Employment Month
  3. Pathways to Employment Teachers Quarterly
Advocates presenting

Committees, Advisory Groups, and Boards

“Nothing About Us, Without Us” rings true for SAAC members. They participate in committees such as No Wrong Door; My Choice, My Way—the HCBS Final Rule; and Community of Practice—Charting the LifeCourse. Having a voice, informed decision-making and choice are important for members of SAAC. From participation on the Developmental Disabilities Council to the case management agency and other non-profits, SAAC members are leading the way in helping people understand their social value and dreams.

Community Engagement

SAAC focuses on access and opportunities for its members.
Events through the year offer a wide variety of activities that support members interests, talents, and ability to give back. SAAC members participate in Children and Youth Day, Abled Hawaii Artists (AHA) festival, Hire Leeward Job and Career Fair, Pacific Rim International Conference.

Advocates at KITV news station.

Exploring Opportunities

Career and Business Club

SAAC Members arrange a visit to a business in the Community. They learn about the work environment and different jobs. Visits included: KITV Television Station, Subway, Kapolei Police Department.

Friendship Lunch

Created by a SAAC member who wanted to have friends, the Friendship Lunch offers members an opportunity to meet new people, participate in the community, and work on skills such as budgeting, making travel arrangements and socializing. Places to go and people to meet, the group has been to restaurants, botanical gardens, and other sites.

Make Art Change Lives

Discovering the joy of different forms of art is the heart of Make Art, Change Lives. Working with art galleries, local businesses and professional artists, SAAC members have the opportunity to explore their hidden talents in art, meet new people and participate in the community. Sites include: Impact Hub, Art+Flea—Mori Hawaii.

Feeling Safe - Being Safe trainer group photo.

Feeling Safe, Being Safe

Feeling Safe, Being Safe (FSBS) is an emergency preparedness program created by self-advocates in California and adopted by SAAC. There are 25 certified FSBS trainers throughout the state. The trainers provide education and interactive activities to teach individuals with developmental disabilities how to take control of their emergency preparedness.

Best Buddies at the bowling alley

Best Buddies – UH Manoa Chapter

Best Buddies Hawaii creates opportunities for one-to-one friendship, integrated employment and leadership skill building for individuals with developmental disabilities. SAAC helped to create the University of Hawaii Manoa chapter to offer its members opportunities for peer friendships and community engagement.


Advocacy in Action

The membership hosted their Leadership Summit on May 30, 2018. Over 130 SAAC members from all 7 chapters attended the event. During the activities, Office of Elections, provided the voting polls for SAAC to vote on their 3 Advocacy in Action Goals.

These goals will be the focus for each chapters advocacy work. Transportation Building Positive Relationships Community Participation SAAC hosts chapter retreats every year and has a Leadership Summit every 3 years with all of its members. SAAC has 204 members with Chapters on Oahu, Maui, Molokai, Lanai, Kauai, Hilo, and Kona.