A Long History of Innovation

The Arcadia Institute was founded in 1994 to make it possible for people with disabilities to participate fully in all aspects of community life that they choose. Throughout our history we have approached this mission through a variety of projects and programs throughout Michigan. We have had a leading role in advocacy efforts for educational reform and systems changes in the mental health system. We have been an incubator to nurture other people’s ideas to fruition, including Parent to Parent of Southwest Michigan which began under our auspices and later became a separate nonprofit corporation. We have developed new and creative ideas to support both people with disabilities, including the creation of the parent run Community Connections Council which provided peer support and funding for individuals and families. We have conducted leadership training for professionals through our Leadership Colloquium, a national workshop on dialogue and published a number of booklets on new programs.

We have been a source of information and guidance to others in three basic areas: • Information and training • Leadership development • Demonstration projects and ongoing programs

The Community Participation is our largest program thus far, but in the sweep of our history it is one of a long line of ‘initiatives’. Visit our web site www.thearcadiainstitute.org