March is Developmental Disabilities Month – yet we celebrate individuals with developmental disabilities every day at PRIDE Industries. Approximately half of PRIDE’s employees with disabilities have developmental disabilities. We are proof positive that individuals with developmental disabilities are capable of great accomplishments given supports and opportunity.
It seems amazing that only 50 years ago, individuals with developmental disabilities were routinely institutionalized in this country. Much progress has been made in how we see, include and respect individuals with disabilities – yet we still have far to go. Today, individuals with developmental disabilities live and participate in our communities. Gradually, but too slowly, they make progress toward having the opportunity to work, contribute and experience the pride that comes with earning a paycheck.
PRIDE was founded in the basement of a church in Auburn, CA some 45 years ago by a group of parents who wanted greater opportunity for their adult children with developmental disabilities. Today, PRIDE serves individuals with a wide range of disabilities and obstacles with an unchanged mission: creating jobs for people with disabilities. Together, we have built a successful social enterprise that creates opportunity for others. We look forward to the day when the labels and need for special months are put aside, and we can all see people for what they a really are: individuals with unique capacities and gifts.