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The Virginia Microboard Association (VMA) was incorporated in 2012

The Virginia Microboard Association, Inc. (VMA) started in the Tidewater area but has expanded throughout the Commonwealth. VMA is dedicated to providing education about what microboards are, and how they can be used to establish “safety nets” for managing the continuity of care for an individual with a disability. VMA regularly invites guest speakers to general meetings who have experience and expertise (local and nationally), to share with the general membership and the public. VMA continues to explore how Virginia law affects the use of microboards, and how they can interface with various state and federal disability related programs and services.

2012

  • Statewide concept developed (established governing board, potential charter, defined membership and intended services), brain stormed to help identify as many things that could possibly be included to help with education and training programs.
  • Met with representatives from NOVA to share how microboards are developed, benefits of microboards to individual and family and how concepts have been explored and developed in Hampton Roads.
  • Committees formed to help fulfill mission: Health/Medical, Education, Parent Resource, Legal Resource, Financial/Taxes, Accounting, Web Design, Insurance, Advocacy/Legislative
  • Worked on tax exempt status and brochure
  • Shared announcement of the first microboard in Virginia appointed as Guardian for the individual with a microboard
  • Participated in the state Arc convention and the Virginia Beach Community Resource Fair
  • Presentation at general meeting: “What is a Microboard”

2013

  • Created an action plan for long and short term goals for development of the website, budget, membership application, dues structure, bylaws, amendments, tax-exempt status and brochure.
  • 501(c)(3) application filed and letter received tax exempt status letter from IRS.
  • VMA President agreed to serve as a board member on the National Association of Microboards
  • Speakers at general membership meetings:

Ruthie-Marie Beckwith, Ph.D., Executive Director and founder of the Tennessee Association of Microboards and Cooperatives. Her discussion, “History of Microboards in Tennessee” addressed the development of microboards serving as natural circle of support and, for individuals with Medicaid funding, as licenced Medicaid Waiver providers.

David Wetherow shared his experience with microboard support models, “Microboards in British Columbia and the Star Wrap Model”. He and wife created the first microboards and are independent facilitators and consultants who conduct planning, training and design sessions for government and community agencies, schools, parent associations and self-advocacy groups. They’re involved in innovative service development, training, management consultation and facilitation in the field of community living.

2014

  • Explored function of microboards in Georgia, Wisconsin and Tennessee
  • Reviewed Medicaid Waiver re-design in Virginia and where microboards can “fit”
  • Establish goals: website development, strategic planning committee focusing on raising visibility and power-points created for future presentations.
  • Previewed a power-point on creating a microboard prepared by Juanita Coleman. She chronicled researching the concept and creating microboard to meet needs of person with a disability (including finding a home with opportunities for community integration).
  • Grant received to offset costs of website development
  • ByLaws revision approved
  • VMA bank account activated

2015

  • Launched virginiamicroboards.org website. Some areas still under construction
  • Redesigned and disseminated new VMA brochure.
    • discussed geographical challenges to insure information is available throughout Virginia
  • Plan to have all power-points available in Dropbox
    • microboard concepts
    • circles of support
    • guardianship
    • home ownership
  • MailChimp activated to facilitate mailing announcements of meetings
  • PayPal function still under review
  • Explored participation on Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and other social media
  • Gmail (virginiamicroboards@gmail.net) set up
  • Speakers at geneal membership meetings:
    • “Microboards, Assisted Decision-Making and Guardianship”. Mac McArthur-Fox discussed options giving the person as much “choice and voice” as possible, alternatives to guardianship, how the microboard functions to support self-determination, and having the microboard serve as legal guardian.