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The Arc of Durham County is a non-profit agency dedicated to serving people with developmental disabilities and their families. The Arc strives to create and improve opportunities by providing leadership in and advocacy for quality human services, family support, information and referral, and public awareness.
The Arc of Durham County was started in 1954 by a small group of parents seeking appropriate services for their children in the public school system. It was a membership organization and part of a national network of local organizations under The Arc of the United States. The Arc of Durham members were advocates for their children and many were very involved in social and civic groups, particularly Civitan Clubs. Over the next twenty years, The Arc was instrumental in raising public awareness, fundraising, improving educational supports (including the purchase of accessible buses), and in developing a network of supporters and donors. By the early 1980s, the first part-time Executive Director was hired and in her role encouraged more parent participation and ownership of The Arc. Today, the agency supports over 400 people annually with direct supports and linkages to services. An additional 200-300 people participate in special events, parent group meetings, and social and recreational activities.
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