The Power of Parents that came together in 1950 to act as Voices of change for People with Disabilities is still going strong today
The Arc Mesa County has been working successfully with Families to provide Advocacy, Education, Empowerment thru Education, and Self Reliance since 1979. Our success can be attributed to working with families thru early intervention in enabling them to navigate the system and provide support as needed.
In 1979, The Arc Mesa County received a Grant of National Significance from the United States Department of Human Services to begin the Effective Parents Program. This program brought parents and professionals to the table as equal partners in the treatment and education of children with Developmental Disabilities.
In 1987, thru a grant from the State Department of Human Services, ARC Grand Mesa expandedRespite Services into the counties of Garfield, Moffat, Rio Blanco and Routt in Western Colorado .
The 90's saw the first New Ways Conference in 1993. The conferences main topic was the beginning of "INCLUSION" of Children with Developmental Disabilities in "REGULAR EDUCATION." Thisconference started the "ball rolling" for INCLUSION of these Kids into regular classrooms in schools on the Western Slope...a movement that is expanding throughout the Western Slope today!
The Arc is the Power of Parents
The Arc is a 65 plus year old nationwide organization comprised of parents that wanted their children to lead fulfilling lives out in the community and not shuttered away.
From the beginning, The Arc was committed to altering the public's perception of children with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Their goal was to educate the public and to secure legislation that guaranteed their children the right to an education, attend preschool, and the right to work.
The Arc was instrumental in supporting passage of the American with Disabilities Act guaranteeing equal rights for their kids. The Arc participated at key points in the drafting of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
The Arc worked to expand Medicaid support for low and middle-income families. Additional information can be found on The Arc National website www.thearc.org.
As Parents, we have the power to define the destiny of our children. It takes patience, due diligence, persistence, a network of other parents and resources, and sometimes the assistance of The Arc to succeed. By working together with The Arc, Therapists, Education, and Community Services, we can devise a lifelong plan that will lead to their success in the community.