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Community and Internet Resources

Arts and Culture: Adaptive Arts Programs:

Disability Specific: Developmental/Intellectual Disability


New Sign Developmental Disabilities Service Organization, Inc. is committed to enhancing the quality of life for persons with developmental disabilities using the arts as one of it's primary modalities. Their programs include adult activity and development centers, a repertory company, and a mural project. The programs are located in Sacramento and Stockton California. For more information, check out their website above.

First Street Gallery Art Center is a program serving adults with developmental disabilities in Claremont, California. The program offers instruction on painting, drawing, printmaking, ceramics, collage, assemblage, and creative writing. Many of the works completed by students are exhibited in the Center's gallery and at many national and international sites. Artists can even sell their work, receiving 60 percent of the sale price. In addition to art instruction, the Center also offers instruction in social skills, self-advocacy, activities of daily living, communication and independent living skills. For more information, call (909) 626-5455.

Hope University is a fine-arts facility for adults with developmental disabilities located in Anaheim, California. Hope University offers courses in music, drama, visual arts, dance and community living skills. It is their mission to "train the talent and diminish the disability through creative-arts therapy." For information on enrollment, call (714) 778-4440 or e-mail hopeuniversity@msn.com.


Kaleidoscope, a musical theater program located in Sarasota, Florida, offers adults with developmental disabilities classes in singing, movement, acting and art. Upon completing class instruction, all students are invited to perform at a local regional theater. For more information, call (941) 355-8808.


Special Music by Special People is a Chicago based music program for individuals with developmental disabilities. The program provides children, teens and adults with developmental disabilities the opportunity to compose, record and perform their own music. This program has been designed to stimulate each participant by encouraging teamwork and self-esteem. For more information, visit their website.


Passion Works Studio, located in Athens, Ohio, provides adults with mental retardation and developmental disabilities an opportunity to express themselves through their personal artistic creations. Each individual's accessibility needs are met through the arts program identifying the unique abilities of each participant. Art projects have included the creation of rubber stamps, original coloring books, window displays and even a parade float. For more information, call (740) 592-6659.


Lake Country Fine Arts School and Gallery 112 W. Capitol in Hartland, Wisconsin offers Adaptive Clay classes for people of all ages that have developmental or physical disabilities. The classes are offered two Saturdays each month from 11:00AM to 12:30PM and are wheelchair accessible. The cost is $40, all supplies included. For dates of classes for each month, schedule of clay pieces to be made, or to register, call (262) 367-2900.

International Listings


Centre for the Arts in Human Development is based at Concordia University in Montreal. "The Centre utilizes the creative arts therapies and applies them to promote growth and development, in people with intellectual and developmental disabilities." Participants are encouraged to move through their personal challenges toward the goal of increased self-esteem and social integration. For more information about this program, visit their website or call (514) 848-8619.

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Community and Internet Resources / FAQ / Guides / Books / News Publications and Media

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[Updated December 31, 2013]
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