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Ability. . .Not Disability: A Historical Perspective

Society's Assets began in 1972 as an informal, grass roots effort led by people with disabilities and incorporated in 1974. One of the agency’s first goals was to expand home health care in Racine. Many individuals with severe disabilities were forced to spend their lives in bed in the evenings and on the weekends since home health care was provided on weekdays only, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. With funding from the Comprehensive Education and Training Act (CETA), which provided funds for non-profit agencies hiring people with disabilities, the group opened an office and established a home care service which operated 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Society’s Assets led the way in developing other services and resources for seniors and people with disabilities, e.g., information and referral, independent living skills, advocacy, peer support, personal care, household assistance, telecommunications relay system, try-out program for adaptive equipment, and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) consultation. Today the agency still provides most of the same services it offered in the early years. However, the scope, complexity, and volume has increased and continues to grow.

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