The Program Lifecycle:
Assessing your program to reduce risk and maximize success
Spend two days learning, sharing, and getting inspired by others in the DSUSA chapter network, as we celebrate 50 years of providing sports and recreation opportunities to individuals with disabilities across the country.
This conference will take attendees through a Program Life Cycle and will discuss best practices through all phases — preparation to implementation. The agenda will feature hands-on, practical risk assessment and crisis management exercises.
Don’t miss this wonderful opportunity to enjoy camaraderie and learning in a casual environment, with numerous opportunities for professional development and networking. You’ll go home with fresh ideas and new strategies to take your program to the next level!
If you have questions about the conference, please email Julianne Mills or call 301-217-9839.
Click to learn more!
• If space permits, DSUSA partners and other community organizations will be invited to register for a fee July 1-5. The fee for conference registration, meals, and lodging is $500 single occupancy or $300 double occupancy. The fee is $100 for registration and meals only. Fees can be paid online or by check. Registration will be confirmed upon receipt of payment (no later than July 7).
• If the conference reaches capacity, additional registrants will be placed on a Waiting List and be permitted to attend as space allows.
• DSUSA Chapters are invited to send 2 attendees to the conference who will receive complimentary registration, meals, and lodging (if traveling from out of the area). Attendees should confer with the leadership of their organization prior to registering for the conference.
• Additional attendees from a DSUSA Chapter may be placed on a Waiting List and be permitted to attend as space allows for a fee. The fee for conference registration, meals, and lodging is $500 single occupancy or $300 double occupancy. The fee is $100 for registration and meals only. Fees can be paid online or by check. Registration will be confirmed upon receipt of payment (no later than July 7).
• Conference capacity is limited. Registration is limited to 2 attendees per chapter to ensure we can serve a larger number of chapters.
• Cancellation Policy: As a courtesy to others who may be on a Waiting List, please notify DSUSA if you can no longer attend the conference.
• Nearby Airports: BOS, MHT, PSM
• Airport Transportation: The C&J bus is an option to travel from Boston Logan Airport to Dover. The Hampton Inn operates a free local shuttle that will pick up on request at the C&J Dover terminal (1 mile from hotel).
• Attendees are permitted to drive their own vehicles, but please note that DSUSA does not provide reimbursement for travel expenses parking, tolls, or mileage reimbursement.
• Free parking is available at all venues except for the University of New Hampshire campus. Limited parking is available on campus for a fee.
Please note, shuttle times are subject to change.
6:15pm – shuttle departs hotel for opening reception
8:45pm – shuttle returns to hotel
7:00am – early bird shuttle departs to UNH campus
7:30am – shuttles depart to UNH campus
5:30pm – shuttles return to hotel
6:15pm – shuttle departs hotel for dinner
8:45pm – early bird shuttle returns to hotel
9:45pm – shuttle returns to hotel
7:00am – early bird shuttle departs to UNH campus
7:30am – shuttles depart to UNH campus
5:30pm – shuttles return to hotel
• Lodging arrangements for attendees traveling from out of the area will be shared in a double occupancy room (2 queen beds, 1 bathroom). Attendees are responsible for their incidental expenses.
• Attendees requiring lodging should indicate this in the registration form.
• Please note, complimentary lodging is not provided for local residents.
• Free parking is available at the hotel for all conference attendees.
• Guests of the Hampton Inn are provided with a free shuttle service within the local area: Wednesday 7am-5pm; Thursday 7am-9pm; Friday & Saturday 7am-11pm. Contact the front desk for more information.
• Complimentary breakfast buffet is available daily 6-10am for guests at the Hampton Inn.
• Lunch is hosted at the Holloway Commons Dining Hall on the University of New Hampshire campus.
• For dinner information, see Evening Activities.
• Please specify dietary restrictions and allergies in your registration form. We will make every effort to provide a variety of food selections and make accommodations for meals when the request does not present an undue burden or cost.
Location: Strafford Farms Restaurant (58 Rochester Road, Dover, NH 03820)
Special Guests: Kirk Bauer (Executive Director of Disabled Sports USA) and Jill Gravink (Executive Director of Northeast Passage)
Heavy hors d’oeuvres will be served.
Thursday, August 17 6:30-9:30pm BBQ, Fun, & Games!
Location: Hilltop Fun Center (165 New Hampshire 108, Somersworth, NH 03878)
Special Guest: Connor Hogan (Member of Disabled Sports USA E-Team)
Buffet dinner followed by your choice of mini golf, go karts, and more!
• Please note, some sessions are interactive and will take place outdoors on varied terrain, grass, and gravel. Please dress comfortably and wear a shoe appropriate for fieldwork.
• We encourage you to bring literature about your program to share (brochures, flyers, manuals). Please bring these items with you when you register on site.
Essential Eligibility Criteria for Adaptive Sports & Recreation
Presenters: Crystal Skahan & Joe Moore
Thursday, August 17 8:00-9:15am at University of New Hampshire campus
In this session, we will review the Integration Mandate of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and discuss how Adaptive Sports programs may utilize this information in the promotion and planning phases of programming opportunities, to safely serve qualified individuals with disabilities. We will also demonstrate how the concept of seamless integration can be incorporated into your programming. Essential Eligibility Criteria will be defined, followed by an examination of how these vary based upon the type of service or activity involved. Lastly, we will consider actions to take in the absence of such standards.
Protecting Your Participants, Staff, Volunteers, and Organization by Asking the Right Questions
Presenter: Bill Snyder
Thursday, August 17 9:30-10:45am at University of New Hampshire campus
As providers of adaptive sports and recreation opportunities for individuals with disabilities we have a heightened level of responsibility to provide them with the safest experience possible. It is critical that we ask the questions that will help us make the right decisions about how best to deliver that experience. Whether determining if a particular activity is appropriate for a participant, if an instructor trainee is ready to independently conduct lessons, if a venue is safe for the activity to be conducted, or if your organization is adequately insured – asking the right and sometimes difficult questions is paramount. During this session we will identify the types of questions that should be asked and ways to incorporate them into your programming.
Remote Venue Access Evaluation
Presenters: Joe Moore, Crystal Skahan, David Lee, Mike Henry
Thursday, August 17 12:15-5:00pm at University of New Hampshire campus; site visits will occur in various locations throughout Dover, Durham, and Rye, NH
Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), recreation programs must include individuals with physical disabilities whenever participation can be made safe without fundamentally altering the nature of the program. Remote venue selection is one the most significant challenges to ADA program compliance. Often forced to make decisions in the absence of published design standards, entities need a framework to evaluate the sites they use for programming. This training will provide decision makers with a framework to understand what factors make remote sites functionally usable to the greatest number of people. The content of this session was developed by Adaptive Expeditions with support from Coastal Community Foundation. AE provides this training and other consulting services to businesses, clubs, and organizations to increase the availability of adaptive sport and recreation opportunities around the world. This session will be delivered in 3 parts: classroom lecture, field work activity in small groups, and conclude with a guided discussion.
Always By Your Side: Best Practices to Engage, Develop, and Retain Volunteer Support
Presenter: Megan Ellis
Friday, August 18 8:00-9:30am at University of New Hampshire campus
Get ready to think strategically about the lifecycle of a volunteer! Volunteers are a key component to building the capacity of an organization beyond what staff alone can accomplish. Building on best practices like role descriptions and processes for onboarding/training, take the next step to explore ways to support long-term volunteers, including ongoing assessment of their fitness for duty and management of changing roles, motivations and needs of volunteers throughout the cycle. Attendees will discuss how they incorporate valuable volunteer resources into the organization’s strategic plan, and engage with one another in small group discussion to synthesize theories in volunteer management into practice in various types and sizes of programs.
Volunteer Management Panel Discussion
Facilitator: Megan Ellis
Panelists: Barbara Schneider (Executive Director at Maine Adaptive), Gail Barille (Chief Executive Officer at National Ability Center), Joe Hurley (Executive Director at Bart J. Ruggiere Adaptive Sports Center), Katie Joly (Program Manager at Sports Association at Gaylord Hospital)
Friday, August 18 9:45-10:45am at University of New Hampshire campus
Adaptive sport programs share common issues when it comes to volunteer management, regardless of their location, operating budget, and a multitude of other factors that make each DSUSA chapter unique. Join a panel of representatives from DSUSA chapters to gain insight into “lessons learned” when it comes to best practices in volunteer management. Participants are encouraged to ask questions and contribute their own challenges (and success stories!) to the conversation.
Risk Management Plans
Presenters: Crystal Skahan and David Lee
Friday, August 18 12:15-1:00pm at University of New Hampshire campus
A comprehensive risk management plan is essential to minimize legal liabilities, personal injuries, and financial risk to the organization. Risk management is an on-going process and its effectiveness must be systematically evaluated and adjustments made as necessary and appropriate. In this session, we will review an integrated risk management model which follows four basic steps in the development of a plan. By identifying types of hazards and risks common to recreation programming, we can understand the process of risk assessment to determine the severity of a harmful event, probability, and impact an occurrence will have on the organization.
Implementation of Emergency Action Plans
Presenters: Crystal Skahan, David Lee, & Mike Henry
Friday, August 18 1:15-5:00pm at University of New Hampshire campus
In the event of an incident, accident, or emergency, a recreation leader or organization needs to assist the victims and minimize potential negative impacts. An emergency action plan (EAP) is a plan of action that an organization enacts once an incident occurs including managing the incident (i.e. rescue, emergency medical plan, and communications) and long term functions involved with the post incident (i.e. dealing with the victim, family, participants, employees, and community). In this session, we will review the components of an EAP, with an emphasis on managing an incident and crisis communication. We will apply these principles in small groups utilizing discussion and role play scenarios in the context of cycling and kayaking programs.
Disabled Sports USA, Chief Financial and Operating Officer
Bill Snyder joined Disabled Sports USA in 2010 and splits his time between financial management and overseeing operations, including human resources and administration. Bill holds an undergraduate degree from Penn State University and a graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Studies from Johns Hopkins University. Additionally, he brings 25 years of experience in nonprofit management to DSUSA.
Northeast Passage, Director of Education & Training
Crystal oversees training and development opportunities for staff and volunteers at Northeast Passage. She is also a Recreation Therapist and contributes to the academic curriculum of the University of New Hampshire through teaching and supervision of Clinical Labs within the Recreation Management and Policy Department. Crystal is an Adaptive Paddling Instructor Trainer through the American Canoe Association and maintains additional Instructor certifications available through USA Archery and USA Waterski.
Northeast Passage, Associate Director of Programs
David is responsible for managing the disabled sport program operations and the adaptive equipment program at Northeast Passage. This valuable resource makes 350 pieces of adaptive equipment available to people with physical disabilities in New England. David also oversees the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Adaptive Sports Grant and administers all of the Veteran sport and recreation opportunities. With support from Disabled Sports USA and the VA, David served as the author/editor of the Adaptive Cycling Instructor’s Manual in 2015.
Adaptive Expeditions, Executive Director
Joe is the Founding Executive Director at Adaptive Expeditions in Charleston, SC. Ten years after becoming an amputee, he left a law career to share his love of an active outdoor recreation lifestyle with others. Adaptive Expeditions provides sports and recreation opportunities to the local community, including adaptive watersports and yoga, among others. Joe is recognized as a leader in the Adaptive Sports and Recreation Industry and travels the country teaching best practices and promoting access for individuals with disabilities. Joe is also the American Canoe Association Adaptive Paddling Committee Chair.
High Hopes Therapeutic Riding, Program Director
After volunteering herself for many years, Megan pursued a career in the field of therapeutic horsemanship through St. Andrew’s University in North Carolina, where she earned a degree and then served as Assistant Program Director of the school’s therapeutic riding program. Megan holds an Advanced Instructor Certification from the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl.) and has presented on the topic of volunteer management to various audiences through workshops for non-profit professionals, therapeutic horsemanship instructor-in-training programs, and at PATH Intl. conferences. Prior to her work in therapeutic horsemanship, Megan graduated from Wake Forest University, served 4 years on active duty in the U.S. Army, and 6 years in the Army National Guard. In her current role as Program Director for High Hopes Therapeutic Riding in Old Lyme, CT, she is responsible for providing services to 250 riders each week with the assistance of 600 volunteers.
Registered Maine Guide, sea-kayaking
Mike has been involved in adaptive sports through past work with Northeast Passage and Maine Adaptive Sports & Recreation. He is a Wilderness First Responder and Registered Maine Guide specialized in sea-kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, and outdoor education. Mike is also a guide and instructor at the LL Bean Outdoor Discovery School in Freeport, ME. In addition to his expertise in sports and the outdoors, Mike is currently a full-time Business instructor at Central Maine Community College.
• Essential Eligibility Criteria for Adaptive Sports & Recreation – The session content has been approved for 75 minutes.
• Best Practices to Engage, Develop and Retain Volunteer Support in Adaptive Sports & Recreation – The session content has been approved for 90 minutes.
• Remote Venue Access Evaluation – The session content has been approved for 4.5 hours.
Cocheco Arts Festival Free Outdoor Concert at Henry Law Park (1 Washington St, Dover, NH)
Friday, August 18 7:00pm
The Friday Night Headliner Concerts are the signature Series of the Festival, with average crowds ranging from 750 to 1,500 people per night. Music lovers of all ages flock to Henry Law Park with picnic blankets, lawn chairs, friends and family to enjoy music in a setting that truly epitomizes the charm and sense of community found only in New England cities as vibrant and historic as Dover. On the banks of the winding Cochecho River, and surrounded by 18th and 19th century mill structures of brick and granite, the park boasts a gently rolling lawn, gigantic shade trees, pristine manicured gardens and walkways, and the beloved Rotary Arts Pavilion.
Portsmouth Harbor Cruise (63 Ceres St, Portsmouth NH)
Come aboard for a tour of the New Hampshire seacoast’s waterways on a 1963 60′ Deltaville Deadrise. Friday night features the Sunset Tour (7:00-7:30pm) or Lights Cruise (8:30-10:00pm). Purchase tickets online.
Dover Bowling Alley (887B Central Ave, Dover, NH)
Need to beat the heat? Reservations are recommended for Friday night Rock n Bowl – call 603-742-9632.