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History and Governance


Family SHADE was established in 2011 with funding from the Delaware Division of Public Health Maternal and Child Health Bureau. Family SHADE was formed in response to a needs assessment of families and service providers conducted by Delaware’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau. The results of the needs assessment indicated the need to strengthen, expand, and coordinate a system of family supports that are easily accessible, avoid duplication, use resources efficiently, and prevent gaps in services to families of Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs (CYSHCN) throughout Delaware. To address these recommendations, organizations, agencies and family members came together to form Family SHADE, an “umbrella” organization that is specifically dedicated to sharing information, resources and expertise to benefit and support families of CYSHCN. The Center for Disabilities Studies at the University of Delaware serves as the administrative home, fiduciary agent and convening agency for Family SHADE.


Family SHADE’s original Bylaws were officially adopted in November 2011 by an interim Advisory Board.  The Bylaws describe the governance structure of Family SHADE in detail. The Bylaws have since gone through some revisions and the most recent version is available for download below.

Family SHADE Bylaws BYLAWS 120716 Adobe Acrobat document [238.9 KB]

Strategic Plan

The  Advisory Board developed a strategic plan for the organization that outlines goals and objectives for Family SHADE through 2022. The strategic plan is available for download below.

Family SHADE Strategic Plan


The current members of the Advisory Board and Family SHADE staff are listed on the Board, Staff and Partners page.