About Ability Beyond

Today, over 3,000 people with disabilities benefit from services we offer across Connecticut and New York. Our mission to discover, build and celebrate the abilities in all people is steadfast, and we are at the forefront of innovation and best practices that are recognized and modeled on state and national levels.

OUR HISTORY AND FUTURE

  • Leading the way

    Recognizing an unmet need for support for children like their son Jim Jim, Mary and Jack Walsh gathered other parents in their living room in 1953 and a mission was born. Initial services were for children and included day care, school and recreation support with parents as volunteers.

  • Official Establishment

    In 1967 the first headquarters of Ability Beyond opened in Danbury, CT, and the not-for-profit corporation was officially established. A year later our first group home opened in Danbury, and we began offering employment services for ages 16 and older.

  • More Programs and Homes

    Ability Beyond was the first organization in Connecticut to achieve accreditation from CARF International. Programs and services were expanded to serve people with mental illness and physical disabilities. Three new group homes were added, and more than 200 people were served annually.

  • Leaders at the Forefront

    In 1982 we became the first agency in the northeast U.S. to offer day program services for people with traumatic brain injury (TBI). Five new homes were built for people with TBI, and 15 more homes were purchased and opened, expanding residential services to 23 group homes.

  • Branching Out

    In 1990 when the U.S. passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Ability Beyond was already serving people in 26 group homes, day and employment services. In 1995 we became the first agency in New York to serve those with TBI and opened our headquarters in Mt. Kisco, where we also housed an outpatient clinic for physical and occupational therapies.

  • 50th Anniversary

    We proudly celebrated 50 years in 2003. In 2005 we became one of the first to close sheltered workshops and transition people with disabilities into community-based employment. In 2007 we received federal recognition for our ‘state of the art’ programming for young adults with mental illness.

  • Growth

    By 2015 we were serving 2,100 people annually. Satellite offices opened in Norwalk and Waterbury, CT, our NY headquarters moved to a beautifully renovated facility at the former Reader’s Digest campus in Chappaqua, NY, and a successful merger with Interlude, Inc. expanded our mental health expertise. In 2012 our employment consulting arm Disability Solutions was founded, and in 2014 we opened Howland House in Beacon NY, creating a revolutionary model of care for our aging and medically frail population.

  • Today

    Now serving 3,000+ people annually, the Covid pandemic challenged us and our team bravely rose to the occasion to keep people in our care safe. Disability Solutions is earning success with Fortune 1000 companies across the U.S. and internationally, helping them meet disability hiring goals. Innovative tech solutions are improving quality and driving efficiency, and we are planning for the future with our Making Beyond Possible campaign to raise $20M.

Our Community Members

We work with thousands of people in Connecticut and New York, who are living with developmental disabilities, autism spectrum disorder, brain injury, mental illness, and often, accompanying physical challenges.

NEW YORK
  • Westchester
  • Putnam
  • Dutchess
  • Rockland
CONNECTICUT
  • Fairfield
  • New Haven
  • Litchfield
  • Hartford
  • Stories of Ability

    It came from the heart of these parents”

    On the occasion of our 60th anniversary, hear a message from the son of our founding family, an early volunteer and the many families whose lives have been changed by the supports we provide.

    By The Numbers

    • 500

      Residential Living Programs

      Residents live in our group homes, independent living and in-home supports

    • 1050

      Employment Programs

      Individuals are trained and employed through our comprehensive employment programs

    • 100

      Transition Services

      Individuals benefit from transition services and our Discover Learn Work program

    • 270

      Employment Programs

      Attendees benefit from experiences and activities in our day programs

    • 950

      Supplemental Services

      Individuals are empowered by our clinical supports, transportation, and service coordination

    • 500

      Residential Living Programs

      Residents live in our group homes, independent living and in-home supports

    • 1050

      Employment Programs

      Individuals are trained and employed through our comprehensive employment programs

    • 100

      Transition Services

      Individuals benefit from transition services and our Discover Learn Work program

    • 270

      Employment Programs

      Attendees benefit from experiences and activities in our day programs

    • 950

      Supplemental Services

      Individuals are empowered by our clinical supports, transportation, and service coordination