Our Unique Approach
In 1996, two professionals and a parent, who each had over 30 years experience in the field of developmental disabilities, met to discuss issues they had faced as both employees and parents of consumers of services in this field. They came to the consensus that individuals and families coping with developmental disabilities needed more options, and thus decided to develop a program with services tailored to address the unique needs of this population.
Our founders believed it was time to advance the standards of care through a creative and collaborative approach. Their aim was to provide an alternative person-centered approach for families and individuals to receive a personalized care program, instead of a pre-determined program that allowed little room for individual preference. They agreed that the individuals and families seeking services should be able to voice their needs regarding what kind of services they receive, as well as how they are provided. They also felt strongly that families should know their loved one’s caretakers both personally and professionally. In addition, the founders believed in a family-like environment. To attain this, all agency staff members are encouraged to get to know the individuals and families being served. The ultimate goal was to create an environment where the individuals are treated with dignity and respect and the staff are regarded as professionals.
These concepts served as the basis for which Services for the Developmentally Challenged was developed and implemented. In November of 1996, Services for the Developmentally Challenged, also known as SDC, was incorporated. SDC is a small, progressive agency which began by providing Medicaid Service Coordination to twenty-five families in the Bronx. During that same year, we started a monthly family support meeting to provide education to families. In 2001, we opened our first two homes and opened a third home in 2005. To date, all of our residences are located in Riverdale in the Bronx. In 2012, SDC opened a Day Habilitation and Prevocational Program that provides an academic and prevocational program to individuals who see a future in the work force.
SDC is a progressive, energetic agency that remains excited and optimistic about meeting the ever-changing needs of its community. We are currently in the development stage of opening a residence and day program for six individuals with Prader-Willi Syndrome. Through our years of providing services, we have become familiar with this unique population, which has presented a growing need for services tailored just for them. We are active members of the New York State Prader-Willi Association and the National Alliance for Prader-Willi.
Our staff receives ongoing professional training, expert leadership, a comprehensive benefits package, and top compensation, which allows them to stay with SDC in a long-term career capacity. When anticipated programs are developed, the implementation of these programs lends itself to both agency and employee growth. SDC supports the growth of its staff by providing professional leadership training. At SDC, we value our employees by offering opportunity for career growth and development as we recognize the benefit of having staff continuity and longevity. Therefore, we prioritize the promotion of existing employees, while also welcoming and embracing new employees, who can provide our team with a fresh, new perspective.