‘My American Dream’ Contest Empowers People with Disabilities


What’s Your American Dream?

It’s time for people with disabilities to fire up that video camera and share your dreams for the future—take the first step in making that dream come true!

The National Disability Institute kicked off its 4th annual “My American Dream—Voices of Americans with Disabilities” Video Contest on August 5. The contest solicits videos wherein people with disabilities share their dreams. The grand prize is $1,000, a tablet computer, and the opportunity to work with a mentor towards making those dreams come true.

The National Disability Institute is the first nationwide nonprofit in the country that is dedicated to creating a brighter economic future for people with disabilities, and the organization is committed to improving and fighting for economic empowerment and economic independence for people with disabilities. Its goal is to use public education, policy development, and advocacy through policy development and training to increase awareness and create positive change across the nation.

So far, the NDI has helped to gain nearly $2 billion in tax refunds and credits for people with disabilities, and is constantly pursuing more opportunities for financial stability and asset development for people with disabilities.

Michael Morris, executive director of the NDI, said, “Like all Americans, people with disabilities strive for and are working tirelessly toward realizing their American dreams. National Disability Institute launched the My American Dream Video Contest to help raise awareness that having a career, starting and running your own business, succeeding in college, purchasing your first home and achieving financial independence are the dreams of all people.”

Morris goes on to say, “The powerful stories shared by people with disabilities entering NDI’s My American Dream Video Contest highlight the amazing dreams people have for their futures and underscore the need for us to continue to work to ensure people with disabilities can achieve greater financial capability and have access to the economic mainstream to live those dreams.”

The deadline to post your entry on the contest web site is September 9, 2014, and entries must be in the form of a three-minute video in which the entry shares the contestant’s story and what he or she plans to do in order to achieve this American dream. There are few limitations on the video itself, which can be creative, serious, funny, or just straightforward, so long as the story comes through and is the centerpiece.

After the deadline, five finalists will be selected by an independent panel, and the people of America will cast their votes for the best of the five starting on September 29. The grand prize winner will be announced by November 10, 2014, via the contest website. The video you’re about to see was submitted by last year’s winner, Lucia Rios. What’s YOUR dream?


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