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Community Engagement for Disability and Aging Research (CEDAR)
Winter 2022
CEDAR Midwest is a Disability and Rehabilitation Research Project funded by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research. This research project is exploring the participation needs of people aging with a physical disability and how community organizations can best meet those needs.

Project Updates

Project 1: Community-Based Research Network—The Missouri Aging and Disability Research Network

The Missouri Aging and Disability Research Network (MADRN) held its first meeting of the year on February 9. The network shared manuscript and project updates and discussed plans for a focus group on fall prevention for people aging with long-term physical disabilities.
Rachel Heeb presents data on physical activity from the cohort study to MADRN members
MADRN members also discussed the ongoing analysis and findings from the longitudinal cohort study of people aging with long-term physical disabilities (Project 2). Rachel Heeb, OTD, OTR, of Washington University in St. Louis presented her analysis of physical activity in this cohort to the network. We look forward to sharing these findings with a wider audience through presentations and/or publication.

Important Dates:
  • The next MADRN webinar is scheduled for March 29, 2022. (See What's Coming for more details.)
  • The next MADRN meeting will be held on May 17, 2022.

MADRN Member Spotlight:

Missouri AgrAbility

Two women stand in the entrance to a barn, with farm equipment in the background. The woman on the left lifts a bag of feed as they talk.
Karen Funkenbush (left), of Missouri AgrAbility, co-hosted our most recent MADRN meeting. Missouri AgrAbility supports farmers with disabilities and their families.
This quarter's MADRN meeting was co-led by Karen Funkenbusch of Missouri AgrAbility. Missouri AgrAbility is part of the National AgrAbility Project, whose goal is to "enhance quality of life for farmers, ranchers and other agricultural workers with disabilities."

Missouri AgrAbility has operated for 25 years and serves 60–100 farmers per year in the state of Missouri. The program uses a multidisciplinary approach, engaging occupational therapists, physical therapists, social workers, vocational rehabilitation, educators and volunteers to support agricultural workers with disabilities. Services include providing assistive technology, peer support, resource referral, education and training, and assessments to find solutions and remove barriers to work and life activities for farmers and agricultural workers across the state.

Learn more about Missouri AgrAbility on their webpage!

Project 2: Longitudinal Cohort Study

Data collection for this study is complete, and we are now analyzing the data we've collected over the past three years.

We looked at the first year of the study to see how our cohort compares with other studies of people aging with disability and published our findings open access. A plain-language summary and infographic for this paper are available.

We also compared sociodemographic characteristics of our participants with their choice to take the Year 2 survey over the phone or via web link. We found that several personal characteristics did associate with participants' survey format preferences. An infographic (also shown below) and summary of this paper are also available.
Infographic showing data from our paper on survey format preference and characteristics of people aging with long-term physical disability

Project 3: Developing and Pilot Testing an Intervention to Reduce Environmental Barriers and Promote Participation for People Aging with Disability

The goal of Project 3 was to develop an intervention to teach self-management skills and remove barriers to participation for people aging with long-term physical disabilities. Project 3 is complete; the resulting intervention, Removing Environmental Barriers to Independent Living (REBIL), is now being tested in a sample of people aging with disabilities (Project 4). See our website for more information on the development of REBIL.

Project 4: Testing the Efficacy of the REBIL Intervention

Project 4 consists of conducting a randomized waitlist controlled trial to test REBIL, the intervention developed in Project 3.

Due to the COVID-19 surge, we had to suspend in-person visits, which meant that we could not provide the intervention to our study participants. At the end of January, we were able to resume visits, and we are now continuing to provide the intervention to remaining individuals in the treatment group. We are also preparing to transition members of the control group into the REBIL program.

What We've Been Up To...

Webinar: Demystifying Hoarding Disorder

On Dec. 1, MADRN welcomed Eileen Dacey, MSW, LCSW, who shared her presentation "Demystifying Hoarding Disorder." Ms. Dacey dispelled myths surrounding hoarding disorder and provided information and resources for community organizations serving individuals who may be struggling with hoarding. Check out this and additional webinars on our website or YouTube channel!
Eileen Dacey discusses hoarding disorder with MADRN members 

What's Coming

Webinar: Diverse Aging with Disability Pathways Among Middle-Aged Adults

The next MARDN webinar will be held onMarch 29 at 12:00 p.m. Central. Margaret Campbell, PhD, of Campbell and Associates Consulting and Szu-Wei Chen, PhD, of Washington University in St. Louis will talk about the diverse experiences of people aging with disabilities.

Margaret Campbell retired from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) in 2016. She now works as a consultant to individual policy advocates and organizations at the intersection of aging, disability and technology research and policy. Szu-Wei Chen is a postdoctoral researcher at Washington University in St. Louis; her primary research focus is on leisure participation for older adults.

We look forward to exploring this topic with our network!
For technical assistance with any part of this project including information, resources, and data, please call 314-289-4270 or email us at cedarmidwest@paraquad.org.
Find out more at cedarmidwest.org.
Copyright © 2019 Community Engagement for Disability and Aging Research Midwest, All rights reserved.

The contents of this newsletter were developed under a grant from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR grant number 90DPCP0001-01-00). NIDILRR is a Center within the Administration for Community Living (ACL), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).  The contents of this newsletter do not necessarily represent the policy of NIDILRR, ACL, or HHS, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.

Our website is:

For technical assistance or more information, please call 314-289-4270 or email us at cedarmidwest@paraquad.org.

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Participation, Environment and Performance Lab · 5232 Oakland Ave. · Saint Louis, MO 63110 · USA

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