It is the mission of Austin Special Chicago to meet the needs of individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities, especially those with severe and profound mental retardation; to provide training and education so that they may have more fulfilled and enriched lives; and to assist their families to keep them in the community.
Established in 1953 as a 501c3 nonprofit, grassroots, community-based, social service agency, Austin Special Chicago was founded by a group of parents who chose not to institutionalize their children with disabilities. Although our organization has changed and grown since then, we continue to honor the founders’ vision and make real their dream of providing essential services to individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities.
Austin Special Chicago is governed by a voluntary board of directors that is committed to provide oversight, guidance, and leadership in the pursuit of the Agency’s mission. Board membership is a diverse representation of professionals from various fields of interest and business, community representatives, and parents, siblings and friends of individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities.
Licensed and funded by the Illinois Department of Human Services, Austin Special Chicago is supported by foundations, charitable organizations, private individuals, and the business community. Today, the Agency operates the Austin Special Developmental Training Center and the Austin Special Residential Program.
Click here to learn about our Developmental Training Program
Click here to learn about our Residential Program