Support NQCA 2021-2022
North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy (NQCA) is a non-profit organization that initiates and supports relationships for people who will benefit from guidance, companionship, and/or advocacy. In each relationship, one partner (the protégé) has a mental disability or disorder. The other partner (the advocate) has skills and interests that match the needs and interests of their disabled friend.
Why is NQCA’s work good for our community?
Informal community support allows disabled people to be less dependent on programs funded with state, federal, and local tax dollars.
Communities work best when we know, care about, stand by, and help each other. The web of mutually beneficial relationships helps hold a community together.
Communities work best when the web of people and relationships include us all—the poor, elderly, and disabled side by side with the rich, young, and able-bodied.
NQCA expands the web of community caring to more fully include our disabled neighbors, and in doing so strengthens the web for us all.
Why is NQCA’s work vital for disabled people?
Advocates bring disabled people, and their gifts, into the fabric of community life. Many—even most—disabled people are not part of the community’s informal, mutually supportive web of relationships.
Advocates are committed friends who have made a commitment to be there. Many disabled people do not have friends from outside the circles of family, paid staff, and other clients in their programs.
Having friends and being part of the community bring opportunities in all areas of life. Most disabled people have fewer opportunities for the good things in life.
Ordinary citizens monitor how human services, schools, doctors, landlords, employers, and others treat our neighbors with disabilities. Advocates are encouraged to speak up on behalf of their disabled friend. Disabled people are more vulnerable to bad things happening to them, and are less able to speak up for themselves.
The relationships are rewarding to both disabled people and their advocates. Disabled people’s gifts are central in the relationship—not just their needs.
Does NQCA’s work have an impact beyond the North Quabbin area?
Through newsletters, presentations, and discussions, NQCA’s work invites others to call forth more neighborly caring in other communities.
Lessons from working with hundreds of people in caring relationships serve as a guide to others on the “how to” questions of initiating and supporting freely-given relationships.
Our community needs Citizen Advocacy to engage us personally in assisting our disabled neighbors. In doing so, NQCA builds community one relationship—two people—at a time. NQCA works toward a vision of a genuinely caring community where all of us are welcomed, included, and valued. Please help NQCA to fulfill its mission as we build toward this vision.