While we had hoped to hold the 2021 FOP Family Gathering in Dallas, Texas, USA, to ensure the safety and well-being of the FOP community during the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic, the IFOPA's Board of Directors has decided to hold this year's FOP Family Gathering as a virtual event November 19-21, 2021.
While it is obviously disappointing to not be able to gather in person, the IFOPA's Board and Staff are excited about the opportunities for greater inclusion that the virtual format provides. We hope you will take full advantage of this opportunity to participate from the comfort of your home with the support of translation services for those that need it.
FOP Family Gatherings are an incredible opportunity to learn from FOP experts and one another as a community. After the first-ever virtual FOP Family Gathering in 2020, we have seen the strengths and the limitations of a virtual meeting. In 2021, we are excited to focus on the many ways meeting virtually allows us to support the global FOP community. Opportunities for connection, learning and growth will be possible for attendees all over the world despite the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic.
We hope you'll enjoy this message from a few of the members of the FOP community who are sharing their time and experience to make the event a success!
You can look forward to these exciting additions to the 2021 Virtual FOP Family Gathering:
- A pre-conference session specifically for families who have been diagnosed in the past several years or families who have recently discovered the IFOPA will be offered on the Thursday before the start of the Virtual FOP Family Gathering.
- This pre-conference workshop will provide an opportunity for attendees to experience a more gradual introduction to the FOP community from a panel of experienced parents who want to share their knowledge with others. Similar to the Family Gathering, there is no cost to registering for this session and attendees can sign up to participate with one click when they register for the Family Gathering.
- Start your mornings off by joining one of our self-care sessions featuring a combination of yoga, meditation and/or mindfulness practices to help you get centered for the day of learning and connecting that lies ahead.
- More community social events including the ever-popular Bingo and several new additions including a cooking class and trivia game!
- Joining the conversation in one of three afternoons of small group discussions led by members of the community on topics including:
- Young adulthood
- Adaptive tools and home modification
- Higher education and career choices
- Advocating for yourself and FOP
- US-specific session on Medicaid and waiver programs
- More topics to be announced
- Hearing from subject-matter experts and community members in joint panels on new topics such as comfort and care with FOP and treating the whole person.
- Engaging interactive activities for community members under 18 including live storytimes, more Kids Contests with IFOPA staff and additional teleplay sessions facilitated by outside play experts!
- A special closing ceremony highlighting members of the community who want to "show and share" their Virtual Family Gathering experience from their home in the United States or around the world!
Stay Tuned for More Information and Watch for These Important Dates:
- Preview the Agenda - July 1
- Registration Opens - August 1
Questions about the Family Gathering?
+1 (785) 294-1607.