Determined to keep their children out of institutional care in 1984, a group of parents initiated a grassroots effort to keep their children with disabilities in private homes and community settings. This initiative gave birth to the parent agency of Access of the Red River Valley.
Our goal for each person we serve is directed by values which include daily interaction with other community members, making informed choices, taking risks, and planning for the future. Today, Access’ clients continue to enjoy living independently in their own homes where they receive support from trained staff that assist them with daily living skills.
Throughout the nineties, Access continued to embrace the mission of providing home and community-based services to individuals with disabilities. In the late 1990’s, in response to the requests of parents, daycares, and schools, Access broadened its lines of services to include younger children with developmental and behavioral disabilities. At that time, the behavior specialist championed quality care for these children, focusing on the strengths of both the child and his/her family. The goal of our children’s services continues to augment the skills children and families need to help their children cope with daily challenges. Families continue to reap the benefits of Access’ trained staff that come into their homes and daycares providing their children the one-on-one support needed to be successful.
The growth of Access continues due to many success stories. In 1997 a grant from United Way allowed us to provide services to families whose children need behavioral support in daycare and school settings. In 2001 the Harbor Achievement Center was created to allow a safe place for all Access clients to gather for crafts and entertainment. In the spring of 2002, the agency began offering Spring Break activities to all of its school age clients. Our professional staff plans a fun week that includes snacks, community tours, and crafts. In 2007, Access broke ground on a tri-plex unit at 910 9th Ave. S. in Moorhead. It houses 6 clients in three apartment units, as well as the Michael Czitchotzki Learning Center (MCLC) which is a place that staff and clients can come for different classes and activities. The MCLC includes board games, video games, art supplies, computers, and exercise equipment. There are now organized activities every week in addition to other events. In 2013, we broke ground again, this time to build a twinhome at 3601 and 3603 11th Ave. S. in Moorhead. It will house a total of six clients, and it is a handicapped accessible home.
Access currently has over 170 employees providing both professional case management and direct care to adults and children who live in the area. All of us at Access of the Red River Valley are proud of the support we give our clients that enhances each person’s independence and ability to live meaningfully and successfully in the community. Access of the Red River Valley is an Equal Employment & Affirmative Action Employer.