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About Us

showing off the medals

In 1954, a group of concerned parents and relatives of individuals with developmental disabilities began seeking solutions to the lack of services for their children. In October 1957, the group was incorporated as the East Middlesex Association for Children.  In 1974 it became the Association for Retarded Citizens reflecting the Agency’s provision of services to all age groups and a new focus on adult services.  Soon after, EMARC began to focus its attention on the over 22 population which, to this day, are not entitled to guaranteed services after 766 programs. 

Today, EMARC annually serves over 1,000 families from Everett, Lynn, Lynnfield, Malden, Medford, Melrose, North Reading, Reading, Saugus, Stoneham, Wakefield and surrounding communities.

The following is an overview of the services EMARC provides:

Life Choices, is a Medicaid Day Habilitation program supporting adults in developing their life skills to increase independence. This innovative program has distinct focuses for various age groups. Locations in Reading, Beverly and Burlington.

Residential Supports in 10 homes and five apartments staffed by EMARC and for individuals living independently.

Job Training including literacy and computer classes.

Employment Opportunities at supervised sites in the community including REI.

Job Placement services for individuals seeking competitive employment.

Food Pantry for low income adults with developmental disabilities and low income families of people with developmental disabilities.

Respite Care to support families caring for their sons and daughters with developmental disabilities at home.

Family Support Groups for parents and siblings of people with disabilities.

A Successful Parenting Program for parents with cognitive limitations.

Support for Seniors, a monthly education and support group for elder caregivers of people with developmental disabilities.  Guest speakers cover topics including health care coverage, depression and Social Security benefits.

Recreation Programs held independently and in cooperation with local schools and youth serving organizations. Diverse activities include integrated sports, Special Olympics training and teams, crafts, music therapy, cooking, outings and special events.

EMARC continues its outstanding record of accreditation from CARF International for Community Integration Services and licensure and certification from the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services.