The Arc of Pennsylvania was started 68 years ago by parents of children with intellectual and developmental disabilities who fought against society’s expectation that their children be sent to state institutions. Thanks to their work, and the movement they created, life for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families is far better than it was in the early 1950’s.
In affiliation with The Arc of the United States, The Arc is the largest nationwide advocacy organization for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The Arc of Pennsylvania has 33 local chapters and represents over 8,000 members. Our state office coordinates strategic, grassroots advocacy efforts; provides policy analysis and trainings and implements the statewide Include Me and the Arc Discovery Employment Transitions (ADEPT) programs that serve children and adults. The Arc of Pennsylvania focuses on systems advocacy and governmental affairs, demonstrating leadership and guidance among all disability organizations in Pennsylvania. Our local chapters of The Arc provide a variety of critical services, including advocacy services, Early Intervention, residential and day supports, home-care assistance, and job training.
We are governed by a volunteer board of directors; a majority of which are required by bylaws to be individuals with disabilities or family members. The board, with our staff, work passionately to uphold our vision that every individual with disabilities and their family have access to the information, advocacy and resources they need to participate as active members of their community.