1. MCH Workforce Development
  2. Funded Projects

Funded Projects

Virginia Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities and Other Related Disabilities

Project Website

Grant Status: Active

Training Category: Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Other Related Disabilities (LEND)

Project Director(s):

Jennifer Accardo, MD
Virginia Commonwealth University
P.O. Box 980405
1000 East Marshall Street
Richmond, VA  23298
Phone: (804) 827-2100

Goals and Objectives:

The Virginia Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (Va-LEND) program is requesting funding to prepare the next generation of leaders in health care and related disciplines to 1) be experts in interdisciplinary, family-centered, culturally and linguistically competent, ethical, genetically informed, evidence-based, and community-based approaches to serve children and youth with Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (CYND; 2) apply the life course model as a framework to better understand health, disabilities, and disparities; and 3) have the skills to provide leadership in effecting systems change in health care at the national, state, and local levels. For 25 years, Va-LEND has addressed critical and emerging issues related to maternal and child health by providing interdisciplinary leadership training involving faculty and trainees from 16 disciplines with 12 credit hours of graduate coursework along with clinical and practicum experience that can be used toward a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Disability Leadership. Va-LEND has the depth and spread of knowledge and best practice to innovatively and comprehensively address pressing needs for Virginia's CYND and their families and to do so more thoroughly than ever before through the expansion proposed as a truly statewide LEND program. Va-LEND will accomplish this by the following:

  1. Training the next generation of MCH leaders in culturally competent, family/person-centered, interprofessional teaming to improve the health and address the needs of all CYND and their families across the lifespan.
  2. Expanding and deepening awareness, partnerships and participation in Va-LEND among MCH programs and stakeholders from currently affiliated and unaffiliated academic disciplines, ethnic and racially diverse groups, and a broad range of geographical regions across the Commonwealth of Virginia.
  3. Grounding Va-LEND activities in family and self-advocate voices, wisdom and lived experiences.
  4. Engaging in continuous quality improvement that ensures everyone in Va-LEND is involved in the effort.