If you haven’t heard about us, it’s ok. You will.
Florida Disability Access and Awareness Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that does things differently. We want to share our vision for an inclusive society where physical and intellectual challenges never overshadow the strength of the human spirit. We want to use the power of media to promote understanding and empathy.
We want to take on stereotypes and negativity through optimism and positive storytelling. To keep with the times, we develop new technologies and video projects. The medium is changing but the human story at its core will always remain.
Our team members want to use the same type of experiences they gained in the commercial sector- developing video games, interactive applications and video productions- to change the way people see, think and feel about disability and to help the idea of charity advance in an impactful way in the XXI century.
We are headquartered in Florida, but the problems we tackle are universal. Spread throughout the world, working with experts passionate to volunteer, interns eager to learn and veterans, we look for new ways to highlight and empower disability communities around the globe. This is the future and we know how to build it.
For the disability community, about the disability community and by disability community. Even a locally-made application can have a huge impact all around the world. Even a small team can launch a product that can change many people’s lives. That is what we stand for. Based in Gainesville, Florida, our foundation is working with specialists, engineers and volunteers from all around the world who want to add new meaning to their amazing and creative ideas. At the same time, we want to give people with disabilities the skills and training to succeed in the technology and media industry. Because what we do matters just as much as how and why.
Using entertainment to educate, raise awareness and sneak in important values, we fight with ignorance, bullying and misinformation. We believe that everybody can change their point of view, if the story is told in the right way. Instead of complaining about how meaningless the interactive content is, we prefer to take action and start changing it slowly.
We focus on interactive video projects, where the audience can participate and grow in understanding about more than 50 shades of disabilities. We create video games, which though entertainment we speak about important problems and real world obstacles. We give people with disabilities the voice and a way to channel their perspective and the interns that assist us get a newfound understanding of important human issues.
Our goals are to provide content, products or an entertaining piece that will force our audience to think and wonder about problems surrounding them. We don’t scare people nor leave them in guilt that they didn’t do anything about real world problems. Taking action is a joyful thing. Our project will leave you with a smile on your face, thinking that you know what to do next.
President Ralph Strzalkowski – an immigrant born with Cerebral Palsy who never let his wheelchair stop him from becoming a lawyer, wanted to find a new way to talk about disability. Building the team for years, finding the right people with the right skills, and dedicated to the mission. Some of us have a disability, some of us don’t, but we all have a common goal, and we all know life’s obstacles. Our team is diverse. From the hearing impaired, to immigrants and cancer survivors. We know the problem, we understand the struggle, and we have a solution.
We have a physical address, but you won’t find us there. We work online, connecting to talent all around the world. We develop projects with the same values and principles that they are meant to promote. For us it’s not only about finalizing the projects, but promoting empathy, understanding and disability issues as we develop them under the guidance of some of our Directors: Ralph Strzalkowski, Paul Brophy and Jazzy Trafficano.
We don’t believe in large corporate structures, excessive salaries and overhead. In fact, currently we rely mostly on volunteers and interns who appreciate the experience of being part of an experiment driving social change. Still, we count on your support to help push our projects further. In times when nonprofits generate a lot of bad press our goal is to be open and transparent, sensitive and sensible. For us, it’s about the passion. We see the world not for what is, but what it could be. More accessible, more understanding and kinder. But we need your help. We are registered to solicit donations in the State of Florida. Please check the bottom of this page for important information*
FDAAF creates opportunities for students who want to put their idealism and passion to good use. By learning about every aspect of developing video and software projects they work with us side by side but also develop their own awareness of the disability issues and the community we feature. We started at University of Florida, where Brooke Kaplan runs FDAAF Gators student group and Beth Roland of the Disability Resource Center is the faculty advisor. If you’re a student, join our team and email firstname.lastname@example.org
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