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History

Founded in 1946, 1st Cerebral Palsy of New Jersey has a long and rich history. Click any of the photos below to see a larger image.

1946

1946

The first cerebral palsy campaign is conducted in Newark by a group of parents and friends determined to raise awareness of cerebral palsy and neurological disabilities.

1948

1948

The group opens Essex & West Hudson's first Cerebral Palsy Treatment Center and Dental Clinic in a single room in the Hospital for Crippled Children in Newark.

1950

1950

An organized county campaign is launched, raising enough funds to operate the treatment center. Cerebral Palsy of Essex and West Hudson grows from seven to hundreds of members from all walks of life.

1951

1951

Cerebral Palsy of Essex and West Hudson’s Board of Directors joins with six major health and welfare organizations, known then as the Combined Cooperative Campaign and now as the United Way.

1952

1952

The mailmen of Irvington conduct "Operation Walkathon" and make a second trip around their respective routes, collecting and contributing $7,000 to the organization.

1953

1953

A ground-breaking ceremony marks the opening of the school and treatment center in Belleville, which offers programs aimed toward increased services for disabled infants, school age children and adults.

1957

1957

Actor Art Carney joins the crusade. Pictured here with Richard Sarno, age 4.

1960

1960

The Adult Day Care Program is formed.

1973

1973

Cerebral Palsy of Essex and West Hudson receives NJ Department of Education approval to start a private school serving disabled school-aged children.

1979

1979

A second wing opens at the school, bringing the number of rooms available from twenty to forty-two.

1980

1980

Approval for a pre-school handicapped program is obtained.

1984

1984

The Experienced in Independent Living Program begins, preparing and enabling disabled teenagers and young adults to live in group homes or in individual housing for the handicapped.

1985

1985

The center is licensed by the New Jersey Department of Health to offer a Medical Day Care Program for physically disabled adults, giving homebound clients the ability to continue services to age 55 without limitations.

1988

1988

The Supervised Apartment Program is launched.

1994

1994

Construction on our first group home begins. The adult program expands to include two group homes and two supervised apartments.

2003

2003

The new handicap-accessible, adapted playground opens, including wheelchair-accessible swings and jungle gym.

2006

2006

The outdoor pool is renovated and a retractable roof is added to allow for year-round aquatic therapy.

2012

2012

Through an Essex County Community Development grant, the facilities undergo important renovations. The building also increases its technology presence with the additions of Smart Boards in most classrooms.

2015

2015

The school's adapted playground is renovated with help from the Belleville-Nutley Kiwanis.

2016

2016

1st Cerebral Palsy of NJ celebrates 70 years of service.