FAQ: Accessibility and Inclusion Ministry (AIM)
FAQ: Accessibility and Inclusion Ministry (AIM)
Disability & Accessibility
- What is AIM? Accessibility and Inclusion Ministry (AIM) is a certification program created by EqUUal Access in partnership with the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA).
- What is the purpose of AIM? Guide congregations who want to better welcome, embrace, integrate, and support people with disabilities and their families in our communities.
- Who can participate in AIM? Any congregation that wishes to do this sacred work and complete the requirements of the AIM program.
- What are the requirements to be AIM Certified? The three phases to becoming certified are:
- Phase I: Form an AIM Team and obtain congregational approval.
- Phase II: Conduct AIM Assessments, set priorities, and create your AIM Plan.
- Phase III: Implement your AIM Plan.
- See AIM Application Process for detailed requirements
- How long should it take to get certified as an AIM Congregation? We estimate two-to-three years from when you file the first packet of information at the end of Phase I. Some congregations will take more and some less depending on the nature of the plan and the ability of the congregation to carry it out.
- Who should be included on our congregation’s AIM Team? Each congregation’s committee should reflect the diversity of the congregation as much as possible, and should include people with disabilities, people without disabilities, and parents of children with disabilities. In keeping with the philosophy of “nothing about us without us,” people with disabilities participate in the leadership of all congregational AIM Teams. (see Participation by People with Disabilities)
- Why do we need to get recertified every 3 years? The intent of the program is to meet each congregation where it is and move it forward at a reasonable pace. This is a recognition that it is not possible to have perfect accessibility and inclusion, and that this program provides a way for a congregation to move forward from where it is continually.
- Can we include disability-related work we already have done in our plan? Workshops, worship service, and projects conducted before completing Phase I are not eligible for inclusion in your plan. This program moves forward from where you are, guided by the congregation’s assessment during Phase II.
- What are the organizing elements of AIM?
- AIM Program—Accessibility and Inclusion Ministry certification program for congregations
- AIM Program Materials—Web-based handbook for use by congregations seeking AIM certification through AIM program
- AIM Coordinating Committee—Committee overseeing all aspects of AIM Program, including revision to certification requirements and AIM Program Materials
- AIM Review Team—Team of two-four volunteers who will review congregation’s AIM Plan
- AIM Administrator—UUA staff person who supports AIM Program and is primary point of contact for congregations. (aim [at] uua [dot] org)
- AIM Team—Congregation’s steering committee for AIM Program. They have overall responsibility, within the congregation, for leading the effort for certification.
- AIM Plan—Congregation’s plan for achieving certification, submitted to AIM Program Administrator who will assign it to one of the AIM Review Teams
- What if I disagree with the assessment of our plan? Contact the AIM Administrator (aim [at] uua [dot] org). Administrator will consult with AIM Coordinating Committee and AIM Review Team for help in resolving disagreement.
- How do I share information with other congregations going through certification?
- Ask the AIM Administrator to post stories, resources, photos, video clips and other information on the website.
- AIM Administrator sets up an AIM meeting at GA open to all congregations pursuing (re)certification.
- AIM Coordinating Committee will be making an internal chat available for AIM Congregations.
- What if I have corrections or suggested additions to the AIM program materials? Contact the AIM Administrator. (aim [at] uua [dot] org). Administrator will direct your ideas to the proper AIM team member for review and will apprise you of the outcome.
- How should we put accessibility information on our congregation’s web site? On your congregation’s home page, you need to have a link to a file that describes in detail about what your congregation provides in terms of accessibility and inclusion. See Accessibility Info on your Website. You will also be able to use the AIM logo on your website once you are certified.
- Where do I go if I have more questions? First visit the many AIM Certification Program pages on the UUA website. If you still have questions, contact the AIM Program Administrator (aim [at] uua [dot] org).