About Us

History of The Arc of Ohio-Stark County

The Arc of Ohio-Stark County was formed in 1952 by a small group of parents who met and organized to inform the Morning exercices 1953community about the educational, emotional, and physical needs of individuals with disabilities and their families. The Arc was responsible for organizing and operating the first educational programs for children with developmental disabilities in Stark County. Classes began in June of 1953.

Today, The Arc of Ohio-Stark County is an advocate and source of support    for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD), their families, and the professionals who work with them. It is a diversely funded membership organization that is dedicated to promoting the welfare and development of the potential of all people with developmental disabilities. Increasing public awareness and educating the general public about ID/DD remain important aspects of The Arc of Ohio-Stark County’s mission.

Mission of The Arc of Ohio

The mission of The Arc of Ohio is to advocate for human rights, personal dignity and community participation of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, through legislative and social action, information and education, local chapter support and family involvement.

Who is The Arc of Ohio?Lunch under the trees 1954

The Arc of Ohio-Stark County, formerly known as The Arc of Stark County, merged with The Arc of Ohio in January of 2014. The Arc of Ohio is a statewide membership association made up of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, their families, friends, interested citizens and professionals in the disability field. Together with our individual members and local chapters, we represent more than 330,000 Ohioans with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. Ohio law recognizes The Arc of Ohio as the organization to represent families in Legislative decisions.

What does The Arc of Ohio believe in?

Our values are based on the concept that all people, regardless of ability, have the right to be productive, interdependent members of their respective communities and the society at large. We recognize the fundamental role of families in making choices and decisions for their minor children. We also hold that individuals, who are adults, have the right to make their own choices concerning where and with whom they will live, and how they will spend their time, regardless of ability.

To read The Arc’s Position Statements, please click here.