Sparc is the largest and oldest local nonprofit organization in the region working with individuals who have intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families to restore humanity to their daily lives. Sparc accomplishes its mission effectively through programs in concurrence to the unique potential of each individual we support. These programs are designed to build self-confidence and independence so that people with intellectual and developmental disabilities become contributing members of the community. The support services Sparc provides through our programs currently benefit approximately 300 persons with disabilities. We operate 21 Community Integrated Living Arrangements, or group homes, providing 24-hour residential care and supported living. In addition, Sparc provides workforce development and life skills development training, supported and competitive employment, and job placement support to the folks supported by Sparc.
The Work Center provides work training opportunities to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The program seeks to enhance the people we support and their ability to engage in productive work activities through a focus on cooperation, attendance, productive capacity and task completion. In addition to paid work opportunities, the folks we support will also receive instruction in physical fitness, computer skills, workplace relationships, volunteerism, self-advocacy, personal care and other hobbies.
Individualized support is provided those receiving supports, who live in their own homes or apartments. This program provides ongoing instruction and oversight in budgeting, shopping, community integration, taking medications, meal planning, public transportation and more. The level and type of assistance is based on individual needs and abilities.
Our group homes are staffed 24-hours a day, 365 days a year. Staff assists the people supported with daily activities including laundry, meal preparation, personal hygiene, taking medications, budgeting and using public transportation. Together, those receiving supports, family members and staff work to set goals to reach the greatest degree of personal independence. Participation in community activities is encouraged and events are regularly scheduled.
Sparc's Summer Kamp program, was established in 1996. It was created to provide children with development disabilities, ages 5 through 22 years old, the opportunity to experience a fun summer camp with their peers, while at the same time helping to prevent summer learning loss.