RUMFORD – The Hope Association in Rumford will host a discussion about the rights of individuals with disabilities at 3 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 23, at 85 Lincoln Ave.

According to Executive Director Catherine Johnson, the Hope Association is teaming up with Katrina Ringrose, the new head of the Disability Rights Center and Office of Advocacy in Augusta, to speak to families and educators about how young adults are falling through the cracks in terms of being cared for.

“The waitlist for state aid is over two years long,” Johnson said. “There’s around 500 people on the list, still waiting. We want to make sure there’s support for parents, places for them to talk about options.”

Johnson said she appreciates what the Disability Rights Center is doing because they’re independent and don’t work for the state.

“Part of the presentation will be Ringrose giving an overview of her department, the positions within it and how they’ve helped a diverse population,” Johnson said.

The presentation will be preceded by a meet and greet with Ringrose at 2:30 p.m., where light refreshments will be provided.

In addition to the discussion on Jan. 23, the Hope Association will host a winter fashion show to showcase the clothing available at the What Not Shop on Jan. 18, Johnson said.

“The fashion show is open to the public,” she said. “We’ll have tables set up everywhere, and people can bring in their lunches and watch the show.”

Johnson praised the What Not Shop for its personalized service.

“They’re the kind of place that you could call and say, ‘Keep an eye open for doilies, or for kilts,’ and they would take your name and number and call you if they ever received any,” Johnson said.

Donations will be accepted at the event, and the Hope Association Glee Club will perform.

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