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150 families needed for new research project

Want to be part of a research project designed to improve programs for all LOGAN families? Now’s your chance.

We’re looking for 150 families in the greater Michiana area, including southwest Michigan, northern Indiana and even Fort Wayne, to participate in the Supporting Parent-Adolescent Relationships and Communication project. The study will evaluate the effectiveness of an intervention program for families with an individual with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Over the course of several months, families will receive information about communication, conflict resolution and the role family conflict plays in child and adolescent development. LOGAN will use the results to develop and improve our programs and support services. Families will be compensated for their participation.

The study, known as the ND-SPARC project, is a collaboration between Mark Cummings, professor at the Shaw Center at Notre Dame, and Joshua John Diehl, Chief Strategy Officer for Autism Services at LOGAN.

Q & A

We asked Dr. Diehl a few questions to better explain the project.

How will families be chosen to participate?

We are looking for families who have an individual with a developmental disability (of any age) living in the family household.  The parents need to be living together, and there must be a sibling between the ages of 10-17. If you are close to meeting the criteria, but are too young by just a little bit to participate, please contact us and we will try to include you when you become eligible.

Do families have to be involved with LOGAN to qualify?

No. In the first stage of the research study, we will be developing and testing the support program for families of individuals with intellectual disabilities. So, all families (whether or not they are currently involved with LOGAN) may participate in the study if they meet certain criteria. In the second stage of the research study, we will attempt to implement the program as a regular LOGAN service. This will be through LOGAN, specifically. You can participate in the first stage without participating in the second stage.

How much time will a family need to commit in order to participate?

The study consists of a prescreen first, four visits as part of the study, and  follow-ups every three-to-six months for one to two years to see how your family is doing. If a family completes the entire study, they would receive $310.

Will families be paid for their time?

Families will receive money for each visit, and will receive up to $310 when (if) they complete the whole study.

What about privacy? Will my child’s results be shared?

We’ll explain in depth your rights as a participant before you start the study. We take the privacy of our participants very seriously. We are governed by federal, state, university, and LOGAN-specific rules to protect your privacy.

What is the impact the grant will have on the community?

Because of the grant, a tremendous amount of money and resources will be directed to our local community. The money will fund the implementation of this therapeutic research study. We hope it will have a very large impact on the way we design and offer programs for families. Our goal is to turn this research study into a program that continues in our community long after the study is over.

How often do opportunities like this come along?

Getting this level of federal funding is difficult and uncommon.  To my knowledge, it is the first grant of this type in which LOGAN has played this type of a role.  However, we hope this is the beginning of many such opportunities for LOGAN in the future!

Where do I sign up?

For more information and to apply for the ND-SPARC project, email NDSPARC@nd.edu or call 574-631-6009.