S.D. & G. Developmental Services Centre provides services to individuals who are developmentally and/or physically challenged and their families/caregivers in the counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry and the City of Cornwall. Established in 1987, S.D. & G. Developmental Services Centre is unique in Canada in the number of programs and services that are available to our community « under one roof ». The programs/services are delivered in French and English by a multi-disciplinary team of professionals who offer people with disabilities needed support.
S.D. & G. Developmental Services Centre presently provides services to individuals who are developmentally and/or physically challenged and their families/caregivers in the counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry and the City of Cornwall. The entire area comprises of a population of approximately 110,000 people with almost 55% living in mostly rural areas.
Services are also provided to children from 0 to 5 years of age who are at risk for developmental delay due to established, biological or pyschosocial factors.
While the Centre’s programs serve both children and adults, children make up 70% of the active case load, and the need is growing.
Over the last few years, the needs of developmentally challenged children and adults have become more complex, making the Centre’s service delivery a challenging task.
Being disabled presents enormous challenges – for the individuals themselves, their families and the communities in which they live.
Until recent years, disabled children and adults have not received any kind of acceptance within their communities. People with disabilities, particularly developmental disabilities are too often ignored, sometimes feared and seldom welcomed. They’re left « on the outside ». In most communities, limited access and ignorance or lack of understanding are common problems.
Families face the constant pull between trying to cope with their child who has a disability and trying to hold a family or marriage together. Everyday activities like getting enough sleep, finding time to help your other children with their homework, doing the groceries become major struggles.
This father agrees:
« Our son was born with Angelman’s Syndrome. Having a developmentally challenged child changes your life in ways you can’t begin to understand, unless you’ve been there. From the day he was born, John never slept well. He’s six now and often sleeps only an hour or two at a time. That means twenty four hours a day, constant care. I’ve steered my career so I can work from home. I’m John’s primary caregiver, and at times, I get so tired I can barely see. »1
Government cutbacks have touched most healthcare and social service organizations. Community programs are experiencing difficulties and some have disappeared altogether. While the Centre is primarily funded by the government, there is no monies available for capital projects such as the construction of a new group home. The Centre is becoming more and more responsible for raising funds to better meet the needs of its clients.
In addition, institutionalized care is becoming a thing of the past. Long term care facilities are closing. Parents of developmentally challenged children and adults have very few options and therefore must take care of their children with very minimal support from community agencies.
S.D. & G. Developmental Services Centre was established to help meet the needs of children and adults with developmental and/or physical disabilities within their own community.