CREATE relies on the expertise of those active in the disability community to help guide our efforts and shape solutions around the needs and limitations of accessible technology. We are always looking to connect our researchers, faculty, and students with organizations interested in sharing their knowledge, expertise, and lived experiences.

CREATE’s increasingly robust partnerships with the community touch all stages of our work:

  • Listening to the needs of those with lived experience to identify future projects
  • Collaborating with impacted communities during the research process
  • Gathering feedback from users when that research is translated into real-world applications

How community partnership works

CREATE strives to support the missions of our community partners in ways meaningful to the goals of each individual organization. This support can take many forms including, but not limited to advice on accessible technology, subject-matter expertise, and special invitations to a wide variety of events.

To provide guidance for students and early career researchers in their interactions with the community, we have clear engagement protocols. Frequent check-ins and feedback checkpoints help ensure that the voices of the community are authentically represented and provide opportunities for continual improvement. 

Image of a PDF listing the benefits of and commitments in community partnerships

A downloadable PDF that lists the benefits and commitments for community partnerships.

CREATE community partnership benefits

We have three levels of engagement for community partners:


  • Resource sharing and event cross-promotion
  • Connections to other organizations
  • Invitations to events
  • Recognition on our website


All benefits from the Connector level, plus:

  • Forum to voice community needs
  • Accessibility advice
  • Access to subject matter experts


All benefits from the Connector and Stakeholder levels, plus:

  • Accessibility reviews and recommendations
  • Content on accessibility topics to share
  • Other support as appropriate

CREATE community partner commitments

We request that our community partners commit to the following forms of collaboration with CREATE:


  • Share resources and cross-promote events
  • Provide connections to other organizations
  • Act as a resource for students


All commitments from the Connector level, plus:

  • Provide feedback on at least one project that affects their community
  • Provide subject matter experts when able
  • Participate in annual Community Day partner meetings to provide feedback and insight


All commitments from the Connector and Stakeholder levels, plus:

  • Provide mentorship on student projects
  • Participate in an annual advisory council planning session
  • Other support, as appropriate

Our community partners

American Parkinson Disease Association – Northwest

The APDA Northwest Chapter supports and empowers people impacted by Parkinson’s disease in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington states. We promote hope and optimism through innovative services, programs, education, and support, while also funding vital research. We are here to help you and your loved ones every step of the way.

American Parkinson Disease Association, Northwest Chapter logo with the tag line, "Strength in optimism. Hope in progress."

Disability Empowerment Center

The Disability Empowerment Center empowers people with disabilities to improve their lives by providing a friendly and welcoming setting to learn new skills, join a peer support group, get help transitioning into independent living, or find other community-based services.

Disability Empowerment Center logo.

Hearing, Speech & Deaf Center

The Hearing, Speech & Deaf Center offers a comprehensive array of programs that foster effective communication for individuals and families affected by hearing or speech differences. 

Hearing, Speech, and Deaf Center logo, a blue circle with the HSDC acronym.

The Here and Now Project

The Here and Now Project connects and empowers the paralysis community in the Pacific NW. A fellowship who encourage and inspire each other to “Do Life” ​in the ​here and now.

Logo with the words Here and Now and a red digital map marker.

Hope Vision Foundation

Based in the South Sound area, the Hope Vision Foundation serves over 40,000 people with low vision by providing individualized resource connections and education services to patients and their care partners.

Hope Vision Foundation logo and name with a graphic of an eye

King County Library System

King County Libraries work to make sure that all library services are accessible, including website and apps. They offer assistive technology and reading materials, accessible computing, meeting rooms with Loop systems, and a catalog of closed caption media.

King County Library System logo with a graphic combining an open book and the letter K.

Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc.

The Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc. is a private, not-for-profit social enterprise providing employment, support, and training opportunities for people who are blind, DeafBlind, and blind with other disabilities. The Lighthouse has provided employment and support to people who are blind in our community since 1918.

Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc. logo, with a graphic of a lighthouse in front of wavy water and faint blue sky and clouds.

NW Center for Assistive Technology Training

Northwest Center for Assistive Technology Training (CATT) is a collaboration, supported in part by the Washington State School for the Blind, that provides assistive technology training to teachers and caregivers of blind/low vision children, utilizing a “train the trainer” model.

Logo for the Washington State School for the Blind, one of the collaborators in the Northwest Center for Assistive Technology Training. Green outline of Washington state with the letters WSSB.

Open Doors for Multicultural Families

Open Doors for Multicultural Families supports and partners with individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and their families. They serve a diverse range of communities, including immigrants, refugees, people of color, and other individuals who may face barriers in accessing support and resources.

Open Doors for Multicultural Families logo with 5 door images in multiple colors and the words Disability, Community, Opportunity

Partnerships for Action | Voices for Empowerment (PAVE)

Partnerships for Action | Voices for Empowerment (PAVE) provides support, training, information and resources to empower and give voice to individuals, youth and families impacted by disabilities. 

Logo for Partnerships for Action | Voices for Empowerment, with the acronym PAVE.

Seattle Adaptive Sports

Seattle Adaptive Sports builds and supports recreational and nationally competitive teams — a powerful vehicle for personal growth & development for people with disabilities.

Seattle Adaptive Sports logo: a shield with the Seattle skyline at the top and sports icons

Summit Community Center

Summit Community Center seeks to create a place for young adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities to recreate, socialize, and connect with their community in a supportive environment that facilitates autonomy, independence, and true engagement. 

Summit Community Center logo with a graphic of mountains, valley and a sun.

Washington Assistive Technology Act Program

Washington Assistive Technology Act Program (WATAP) helps persons facing challenges related to disability and aging and their family members, caregivers, employers, service provider professionals, educators, and others to select and use assistive technology. 

Washington Assistive Technology Act Program logo, with the shape of Washington state and a magnifying glass over the acronym WATAP.