In the 1970s in Ontario, it was common for people with developmental disabilities to live in institutions. In fact, the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services noted in 1976 that more than 10,000 people with developmental disabilities were provided with “residential care” in 16 facilities across the province. The families that came together to build the New Dawn and H.L. McQuarrie schools wanted something different for their children.
On July 9, 1971, KW Habilitation was incorporated with members being equally elected from the KW Kinsmen and from the KW Association for Community Living. The programs established at the time were the Development Centre for Children, the Kinsmen Training Centre and David Fisher Residence. These two forward-thinking organizations were integral in building the integrated services we provide today and the growth and changes that came from the 1970s were laid the groundwork in developing our vision statement, a community where everyone belongs and participates.
Looking back through some of our archives, we thought we would share a portion of the message shared by Arthur A. Kunza in January of 1970.