In studying processes of change in the life of persons with intellectual
disabilities our research team had to face many challenges. First we had to
clarify the concept of quality of life in a period with too many models and
too few clear principles to follow. In fact, the quality of life is a rather
subjective concept, based on personal satisfaction and therefore very
difficult to assess. This difficulty is even harder to overcome when your
subjects are persons with intellectual disabilities. That’s why we had to base
much of our assessment on the accounts from parents and staff members and
to focus on our own observations and insights.
For this we are in depth to several organizations, families and
individuals who shared their experiences and efforts and made us
understand that even with a lack of material resources, lack of space,
unavailability of information, inadequate guidance from professionals and
even with limited intellectual abilities, many things are possible.
And finally we had to clarify who the audience for this paper should be.
We hope that it will go beyond academia, on to the professionals who are
working directly with intellectually disabled persons. But we also hope that
it will be available to the parents and families of disabled people. We hope
that this product will contribute to the empowerment of parents and service
providers to seek and develop better and more appropriate services. We also
hope that those in charge of the administration of professional and other
organizations in the community that reach out to parents and persons with
intellectual disability will also access this paper. We hope that they will be
able to use this information and insight to bring about even more effective
programs and sensitize persons to existing conditions in the Romanian
context. And we hope that the book will be accessed by governmental
organizations that are indirectly and directly involved with policy making
regarding disabilities as well as funding such initiatives.