Lawrence County Association for Responsible Care (LCARC), formerly P.A.R.C., began in the 1950’s as a grass roots group of parents who had children with physical and/or intellectual disabilities. The parents met monthly to discuss concerns and to promote education and services for their children.
In 1954, on a state level, the Pennsylvania Association for Retarded Citizens advocated for public schools to provide education for children with mental retardation. Locally, a self-contained classroom was established at Lincoln-Garfield elementary school with parents providing the transportation. The original group of parents continued to meet and developed pilot projects to provide other services for their children.
In the late 1950’s a vocational training center was established and shortly after, that group split away from P.A.R.C. to become their own organization. P.A.R.C. continued to advocate on behalf of the mentally retarded citizens of Lawrence County and in the 1960’s established a pre-school program called “Little Bird”, which was eventually renamed Lawrence County Growth & Development Center.
In the 1970’s there was a rapid growth of programs being offered, including:
- Adult Education, which taught basic living skills to adults
- Infant Stimulation Program where Special Education teachers worked with children under age 2.
- Summer Camp, initially a 4 week summer program, 2 weeks each for younger and older children.
- Recreation, which offered opportunities for individuals to participate in a variety of activities.
- Group Homes, which were first opened in 1977 with clients from Polk.
During the 1980’s and 1990’s, the services we provided for people with intellectual disabilities continued to expand and evolve. P.A.R.C. became Lawrence County's LCARC. Emphasis was placed on quality of care, individualized services plans and the inclusion of home-bound services.
Today, we work closely with families to identify and meet the needs of the people we serve. Throughout all, we strive for quality and excellence, while respecting the dignity and rights of each individual in our care.
We ARE Committed to Care!