The ARC Of Greater
The ARC of Greater Manchester (referred to in this document as “The ARC) is an organization of parents, siblings, and other interested persons who have concerns for people with developmental disabilities. We exist to serve those individuals. Normally people have inherent skills to deal with daily living. Our children, and others in our care, need help with many of these skills to help them survive. The needs extend further. Our children, young people and older adults need help in planning for the future when they have no family to depend on.
The ARC is affiliated with the National ARC. We can draw upon its resources, and share in the benefits of a large organization. The benefits include the availability of life insurance for our members and advocacy relating to laws and regulations regarding people who are developmentally disabled.
The goals of The ARC are to do “whatever is necessary” to assist in the provision of basic needs and improvement of the living standards of people with developmental disabilities. We endeavor to provide them with a life offering dignity and self-respect.
The ARC is not an area agency, and we do not wish to take the place of one. The efforts and goals of The ARC are primarily directed towards the members of the organization, although some of our activities extend into the larger community. Achievement of these goals can occur only with the participation of the membership. Financial support for meeting these goals will be solicited from the communities.
The goals of The ARC of Greater Manchester include the following:
One of the prime reasons for creation of The ARC is to serve as an advocating group. Laws and regulations concerning developmentally disabled people are constantly being created and changed. We MUST be aware of these to be an active force in ensuring maximum benefits to the developmentally disabled. Our efforts are primarily directed towards informing members of The ARC of pending legislation and changes to existing laws and towards the education of legislatures regarding the needs of our members.
Formal and Informal Social Activities:
A major goal of the ARC of Greater Manchester is to assure that the social lives of people with developmental disabilities are as complete as possible. Accordingly, the ARC of Greater Manchester will continue to sponsor, in conjunction with the Area Agency and other interested organizations, a series of dances during the year. We will continue to sponsor other activities such as a bowling league, summer camp scholarships, hayrides and Special Olympics teams that will enrich the lives of the developmentally disabled.
It is the belief of the ARC that people with developmental disabilities live in conditions that nurture dignity and self-respect. On a practical level, this means that they should have a place to live with bed, a chair and a table. There have been, and are, people with developmental disabilities living in the Greater Manchester area that do not have these basic amenities. A goal of the ARC is to provide these. In addition, there should be basic accouterments for those who live in independent settings. These could
include a radio, a TV, or even a tablecloth for a kitchen table. A goal of the ARC is to provide some of these items which can change a “place to live” into a “home.
Transition to Adulthood:
There are early intervention programs for the very young. There are programs to carry the child through the school years. The law requires these. At the age of twenty-one, entitlement ends, the laws mandating care stop. The young adult can get on a “Waiting List” for services, but there is no law requiring that services be provided. One goal of the ARC is to work with the school system, the Family Support Council and any others needed to develop a transition program for people who are close to leaving the school system and entering into adulthood. The intent is to smooth out the road they will be traveling, and lessen the stresses of the transition.
Some long-term goals (they might be considered to be dreams) are envisioned for the ARC of Greater Manchester. However, financial and legal circumstances and the lack of willing workers force the organization to keep them in abeyance. These goals include:
A “Drop-in: Center
Funding Dreams for individuals
Transportation for Individuals
Help for Low-income Individuals
The presentation of the goals for the ARC is not in any order of importance or priority. Some goals are more basic than others. We understand that the probability of meeting all the goals is doubtful. However, to be a viable organization, we must have a sense of where we are, and where we want to go. The goals listed here are not written in stone – They can and should be reviewed periodically and changed, added to, or eliminated, as circumstances require. They serve as a direction for our efforts, and give us a standard to measure our success by.
Robert A. Ramsay
President, the ARC of Greater Manchester, 2003-2006