From WENY, Cara Demers
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (WENY) -- The Arc of Schuyler is making a 1.75 million dollar investment in hopes of better serving the community. The organization's Transform 2020 plan would expand and create new opportunities for residents, despite whether or not they have a developmental disability.
The entire transformation plan comes as New York State is requiring developmental disability provider agencies, such as the Arc, to close or transform their sheltered workshops by 2021. A sheltered workshop is a supervised work place, typically for those with disabilities.
The Arc of Schuyler already runs a food manufacturing service, employing residents to help package food. It also allows them to learn and practice safe food handling techniques.
"In today's standard, a sheltered workshop is considered segregating those with developmental disabilities from the rest of the population," explains Jeanette Frank, Executive Director.
To meet these new standards, The Arc will now expand its Glen Copack service to employ people both with or without developmental disabilities.
It will also offer an inclusive job training program with the Watkins Glen School District.
"The integration allows everyone to learn on a level platform and compete in the workplace," says Frank.
There are also plans to develop a new Neighborhood Center, offering space for meetings, socialization and classes in wellness, cooking and the arts.
The entire capital project is on track to be finished by the year 2020.
If you'd like to help with The Arc's fund raising campaign, you can donate online or call The Arc directly at 607-535-6934 to learn more about the project.