Accessibility Ministries

Disability Concerns Logo

Grant Forms

Links to Funding and Scholarship from the UMC DisAbility Ministries Committee

Accessibility Audit Form (2019)

Host a Disability Concerns Workshop (PDF File)

The IGRC Committee on Disability Concerns was formed by the 2010 Annual Conference session. In 2018, this committee merged with the IGRC Committee on Deaf and Hard of Hearing to form the Committee on Accessibility Ministries. In accordance with ¶653 of the Book of Discipline, this committee has responsibility for the following areas with regard to persons with disabilities:

  • Advocacy for the leadership role of persons with disabilities (both clergy and lay) in the local church and the conference.
  • Program development
  • Awareness of existing ministries within the conference for persons with disabilities.
  • Developing sensitivity and awareness.
  • Fostering cooperation among ministries focused on various specific disabilities.
  • Resourcing local churches to become both “attitudinally and architecturally accessible.”
  • Promoting full inclusion of persons with disabilities.
  • Sharing knowledge and resources through disability associations.
  • Identifying the need for ministry with people with specific disabilities, including deaf/hard of hearing people, and developing resources for such ministry.

The terms "deaf" and "hard of hearing" are descriptive of a wide range of people. Some are hearing-impaired due to conditions that have existed from (or near) birth; some have lost hearing due to age and/or other advancing physical challenges; some have experienced loss due to trauma.

The population for this ministry is scattered. Within the Illinois Great Rivers Conference, the Jacksonville community is home to a concentrated group, due to the presence of the Illinois School for the Deaf. However, throughout the IGRC there are churches trying to offer ministry with deaf/hard of hearing individuals. The committee seeks to be a partner in this endeavor.