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people at table using toolkit

Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and their families recovering from the devastation of the Maui wildfires are receiving vital assistance through a free toolkit consisting of trauma-informed workbooks and resource cards.

person helping another person use the toolkit

A collaboration between the Center on Disability Studies (CDS) at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa College of Education (COE) and the Hawaiʻi Department of Health Developmental Disabilities Division (DOH DDD), the toolkits are utilized in workshops designed to offer practical solutions to supporting the mental health of individuals with I/DD.

“Together with the DOH DDD, we have been conducting workshops in adult day health programs such as Easterseals and Arc of Maui,” said CDS Associate Director Maya Matheis. “Participating adults with I/DD and support staff have found these sessions immensely beneficial and cathartic.”

The toolkit was developed by Matheis based on evidence-based practices. Matheis, who is a licensed clinical psychologist, has experience treating traumatic stress in this population.

CDS and DOH DDD have also been meeting individually with families of individuals with I/DD affected by the wildfires. These personalized sessions provide tailored support, ensuring that families have access to the assistance they require during this difficult time.

The toolkit was introduced on October 25 to families, mental health professionals and more in a free webinar, Maui Relief: Supporting Mental Health for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. A recording of the webinar will be available on the CDS website.

The toolkit is free and available for download to anyone in the community. Requests for printed materials can be sent to Matheis at

Read more at the COE website.

people at table using toolkit

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