C-HOPE’s goal is to meet the vocational and social needs of adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities and provide them a path to greater independence.
Developmental disabilities are severe, long term disabilities that can affect cognitive ability, physical functioning, or both. These disabilities appear before age 22 and are likely to be life-long. The term “developmental disability” encompasses intellectual disability but also includes physical disabilities. Some developmental disabilities may be solely physical, such as blindness from birth. Others involve both physical and intellectual disabilities stemming from genetic or other causes, such as Down syndrome and fetal alcohol syndrome. Autism, cerebral palsy and some other conditions are also developmental disabilities.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), as many as 15% of US children have a developmental or intellectual disability. Up to 7.7 million US adults have at least a mild developmental disability that affects their life in some way. The US unemployment rate for adults with developmental or intellectual disabilities is 82.2%. As a result, over 28% of adults with a developmental disability are living in poverty right now in the US.
With over 28% of adults with developmental disabilities living in poverty, there are over 2 million of these adults without the financial resources to participate in vocational and social programs like those offered by C-HOPE. This is why we focus here on funding scholarships to C-HOPE programs for adults with disabilities that have the need but not the means.