Each year our members donate toward Major Projects when they
submit their dues. What is our Major Projects?.
In the late 1940's, parents of children with cerebral palsy and
other disabilities were constantly frustrated by the lack of
services to meet their children's special needs. A number of these
parents banded together to advocate for solutions and founded
United Cerebral Palsy Associations of New York State, Inc.,
(UCPA/NYS). Upon sharing their mutual concerns, it became
apparent that hundreds of people with disabilities were
homebound due to a lack of knowledge and experience in
providing for their needs and that ultimately, the heaviest burden
of day-to-day care was borne by families in their homes. Hence,
UCPA/NYS resolved to seek out and develop the necessary array
of community based services to support persons with disabilities
and their families.
On March 15, 1964, representatives of the New York State Elks
Association and the UCPA/NYS met to discuss a joint venture
that would benefit children and adults with disabilities and their
families. As a result, the NYS Elks Service Program was adopted
as an Elks Major Project. Since that time, the New York State
Elks Association has contributed over $10 million to the UCPA/
NYS for the Home Service Program including $460,000 in the
On April 1, 1966, the first two Home Service Directors began
mobile services to persons with disabilities and their families.
Since 1966, the program has grown and expanded to every county
of New York State with 27 Home Service Directors serving over
12,000 individuals with disabilities. They provide referrals for
individual evaluations, counseling, follow-up and program
development for adults and children with disabilities and their
families the home communities.
In addition, from our donations toward Major Projects, our
NY Sate Elks Association provides several grants each year to
help purchase vehicles for use by Home Service Directors.
In 2001 UCPA officially changed their name to Cerebral Palsy
Associations of New York State. In Western NY, Empower
and Aspire are the chapters for Cerebral Palsy. There are so
many home care services that are provided because of us and
we need to continue so these children and young adults can
continue to live and thrive in the community as we all do.