”Study the past if you would divine the future”
Society has placed a high value on providing appropriate education, training and opportunities to enable citizens with mental or physical challenges to live more independently. Morrow County acknowledged and accepted the responsibility of providing the services and programs needed by its citizens with disabilities many years ago. Formally beginning in 1958, seven dedicated parents and interested individuals established the Council for Retarded Citizens of Morrow County, a non-profit organization. This organization, supported by contributions from individuals, local industries, churches and other interested groups, conducted a public education program for individuals with disabilities. The program outgrew its first location in a church annex, and with the passage of an operating levy in 1964 and Senate Bill 169 in 1967, the transformation to the Morrow County Board began. The need for services beyond school-age educational programs led to the creation of an adult activity center in 1971 to provide continuing education focusing on vocational training.
The Morrow County Board of Developmental Disabilities (Board of DD) has experienced many changes over the past fifty years. Expansion to serve the growing demands of an advancing population led to separate buildings for children, adults and seniors. In 1999, the Board of DD took advantage of a state grant to renovate and expand its current children’s building with 90% of the costs covered by the grant. Only a few years later, a transition from school-age services to the provision of pre-school and early intervention programs for infants and toddlers began as families chose the inclusion opportunities public education provided. This transition proved to be very difficult and ultimately lead to the Board losing support, connection and awareness within the community. Unfortunately, it became necessary for the Board of DD to make significant cuts to its programming and major changes were made by the agency including budget and staffing cuts exceeding 50% , closing of two buildings, as well as suspension of early intervention, community support and job coaching services
Today, the staff and board members remain untiringly committed to maintaining the support for the core services that individuals with disabilities desperately seek. We are dedicated to serving individuals with disabilities and promise do all that is possbile to provide them with opportunities to lead fulfilling, productive, engaging and happy lives! Morrow County is a very caring community and while it is important to understand and learn from the past, we look foward to an even brighter future. Thanks to the growing levels of community support and the invaluable relationships the individuals served by the Board share with their community we proudly say, “We Are Morrow DD!”