The Arc of Union County Celebrates 70 Years and Counting

A leading provider of services for people with disabilities commemorates milestone year with a landmark event this October.

The Arc of Union County was founded in 1949 when a group of concerned parents of children with intellectual and developmental disabilities gathered by the collective desire for their children to lead fulfilling lives and thrive in their communities, instead of being subject to institutions with harsh living conditions. Seven decades ago, there was much to learn about intellectual and developmental disabilities (then referred to as ‘mental retardation’), the people, their families and the causes. There were virtually no programs or services to assist people with disabilities in the community or to support their families. It was a common occurrence for doctors to tell parents that the best place for their child was in an institution. This group of parents was granted a temporary charter by the “New Jersey Parents’ Group for Retarded Children”, and what is now known as The Arc of Union County was designated the Union County Unit of that Organization. Seventy years later, The Arc has become a local pioneer within Union County and its surrounding areas.

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To commemorate this major milestone, The Arc of Union County will hold their landmark event, "Celebrating 70 Years: Autumn & The Arc," on October 3, 2019 at Stage House Tavern in Mountainside. The event will feature three hours of unlimited food, wine and beer, live music, and high value raffle items, including a cruise to Bermuda. Over 100 community partners and supporters are anticipated to join The Arc in their celebration of 70 years of service. All proceeds of this event will benefit the continuation of programs and services provided by The Arc.

“Our 70th Anniversary has been a record-setting year for the agency,” said Frank Caragher, Executive Director of The Arc of Union County.  “We have a proud history of changing with the times. While the agency has been undergoing exciting new developments and an expansion of services, its core principles have remained constant. As we work to achieve our vision of creating productive and enhanced lives for people with disabilities, their families, and the community, we’re taking a moment to reflect on our past while also embracing our future.”

Since its founding, The Arc of Union County has played a major role within the community by providing a lifespan of programs and care to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Through quality services and by advocacy efforts to fight the stigma of disabilities, The Arc has a longstanding profound reputation for making change happen.

“As we celebrate our 70th Anniversary, we must anticipate the next 70 years. We must continue to grow, taking what has been positive about our history, and use it to improve what we do and how we do it.  The more we work together, the stronger we will get, and the better we will be for our consumers and their families.” (Frank X. Caragher).

About The Arc of Union County

The Arc of Union County is a non-profit, 501c(3) organization headquartered in Springfield, NJ, dedicated to enriching the lives of individuals of all ages with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The Arc of Union County serves more than 1,000 families throughout Union County. To learn more contact 973-315-0000 or visit www.arcunion.org.

 

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