Community Outreach

InfoAble Portal

Librarians in front of InfoAble Portal poster at conference

The Creating the InfoAble Portal project was a collaboration with Family Connection of South Carolina, a community-based, family-focused organization for families who have children with special needs. During this project, librarians created the InfoAble Portal web site and purchased computer equipment for the Columbia Family Connection office’s Family Center.

The InfoAble Portal, a customized information resource that pulls together information from MedlinePlus, Clinical, PubMed, and the Center for Disability Resources Library, was developed to improve access to disability information. The InfoAble Portal features a Topics section, which provide deep links to topic level content. These topics, including Asthma, ADD/ADHD, Autism, Down Syndrome, Fathers, Preemie, and Siblings , were based on support groups at Family Connection of South Carolina. 

Project funding was used to purchase two workstations and a multi-media projector for the Family Center. One workstation is available for parents to use in performing research and accessing the InfoAble Portal. A multi-media projector and second workstation were installed in the conference/training room. Using the projector and workstation, parents can access the InfoAble Portal and share information during support group meetings and in-house training sessions.

The Library received an InfoAble Portal follow-up award, which was used to interconnect the six Family Connection of SC offices with a videoconferencing system to use for training sessions, support group meetings, and staff meetings. Project funds were used to purchase projectors and all-in-one conference cameras, which were distributed to each of the offices. Two tutorials about the InfoAble Portal and the Center for Disability Resources (CDR) Library were developed to promote and educate users about these resources. A training session covering how to use the equipment, Google Hangouts, the InfoAble Portal, and the CDR Library was held at the Columbia Family Connection of SC office.

This project has been funded in part with federal funds from the National Library of Medicine, the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Health and Human Services, under Contract No. NO1- LM-6-3502 with the University of Maryland, Baltimore.