Raise Your Voice: Succeeding Through Self-Advocacy  

Living with paralysis –– and any disability –– requires a certain amount of self-advocacy as you learn to navigate a world not necessarily designed with your needs in mind. Although at times overwhelming, self-advocacy can be an empowering experience that leads to change for yourself and your community.  

To guide you in your self-advocacy journey, we’ve partnered with the Shepherd Center to bring you a seven-part video series, Raise Your Voice: Succeeding Through Self-Advocacy. Videos offer expert advice and testimonials from community members.  

From exploring the history of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to navigating healthcare, employment, housing, transportation, and education, these videos provide you with the tools you need to be a successful self-advocate.   

A History of Our Community 

 As a person with a disability, you are part of a unique community with a rich history of self-advocates working to create a more accessible world. In this video, explore the history of disability rights and the progress made in building an inclusive society.

Mastering the Skill of Self-Advocacy 

While self-advocacy can at times be challenging, it can also be an empowering experience that leads to change –– for yourself and your community. This video will identify tools to help you develop a successful, assertive approach to practice self-advocacy in any situation.

View further resources at:

Advocacy & Disability Rights

Become a Self-Advocate

Advocate for Change

Introduction to Advocacy

Protection & Advocacy Systems


5 Elements of Successful Advocacy

 Navigating Healthcare   

Accessing quality healthcare, whether primary or specialized, presents various challenges for those living with paralysis. In this video, learn how to navigate the healthcare system to ensure you receive the care you need, and gain tools to address challenges along the way.

View further resources at: 

Accessible Medical Healthcare

Access to Medical Care for People with Mobility Disabilities

Medicare, Medicaid, and Other Insurance

Insurance Appeals

Overview of Insurance Options

Women with SCI Resource Videos

Seeking Employment   

This segment will explore the challenges of seeking employment or returning to work as someone living with paralysis. You will hear expert advice from a certified rehabilitation counselor and a vocational specialist to assist you in preparing to enter or re-enter the workplace. 

View further resources at:

Employment for People with Disabilities

Employment for People with Disabilities Factsheet

Vocational Rehabilitation

Pre-Employment Benefits Analysis (scroll halfway down page)

Work and Benefits

Reentering the Workforce After Disability

Protection & Advocacy Systems

Job Accommodations Network

   Join Our Movement

What started as an idea has become a national movement. With your support, we can influence policy and inspire lasting change.

Become an Advocate

Equal Access to Housing 

Whether you want to rent, sell, or purchase a home, being aware of your rights and resources is essential when looking for a place to live. In this video, discover the tools needed to effectively secure safe and stable housing. 

View further resources at:

Housing for People with Disabilities Factsheet

Reasonable Accommodations and Modifications in Housing Settings Factsheet

Home Modification Factsheet

Home Modification

Fair Housing Act

Equal Credit Opportunity Act

Emergency Preparedness for People with Paralysis

RESCUE Program – Emergency Preparedness

 Accessible Education  

For people living with paralysis, going to school –– whether K-12 or college –– requires extra preparation. This video is designed to simplify this process and streamline your educational journey, making it more accessible, manageable, and rewarding. 

View further resources at:

Education for People with Disabilities

Navigating and Transitioning to College with Paralysis

College Transition Counseling with Accessible College


Transportation and integration into your community is important for your quality of life. In this segment, explore your rights related to pedestrian travel, public transportation, driving and operating a car, and air travel, and learn practical tips for navigating transportation barriers.  

View further resources at:

Find a Certified Driver Rehabilitation Specialist

Adaptive Tools for Independence: Public Transportation Options

Top Travel Tips

Traveling with Your Wheelchair

Travel Factsheet

Traveling with a Disability – U.S. Department of Transportation

Video Series: Accessible Travel

Cars and Driving

Air Travel for Wheelchair Users

Federal Transit Administration – Paratransit Frequently Asked Questions

Air Carriers Act

 View the full series on our YouTube channel. 

Check out our previous video series with the Shepherd Center, Cultivating Resilience After Spinal Cord Injury Trauma

 Check out ChristopherReeve.org/FreeResources for more free resources. 

About the Author - Reeve Staff

This blog was written by the Reeve Foundation for educational purposes. For more information please reach out to information@christopherreeve.org

Reeve Staff

The opinions expressed in these blogs are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation.

The National Paralysis Resource Center website is supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $10,000,000 with 100 percent funding by ACL/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement by, ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.