Past to Present

Southwinds’¬†Founder’s Legacy

Southwinds, Inc. had its beginnings with Parent to Parent South Hills, a group of parents of persons with mental retardation who offered one another support in the special problems of in-home care for their sons and daughters.

In 1983, the group broadened the scope of its activities, and a committee of fifteen began to study the problems faced by adult children with mental retardation who required an out of home residence.

The group decided that the greatest need at that time was for an increase in community residential facilities for persons reaching adulthood. Such facilities, while providing much needed family relief, would grant their sons and daughters the opportunity to develop their abilities and live more independently in the community.

After acquainting mental retardation professionals and legislators with the great need for an expansion of community services, and exploring the possibility of becoming an incorporated service agency, Southwinds, Inc. became a service provider in November 1983 with objectives and goals identified as:

Establishing 24-hour residential programs that protect individual dignity and health.
Serving as a base from which individuals can develop the skills necessary to lead productive lives in the least restrictive environment.
Enhancing the individual’s self-worth, self-care capabilities, interpersonal skills, and the understanding of the responsibilities of community living.
Maximizing the individual’s integration into the community and use of generic services.
These objectives and goals are implemented through the combined efforts of the Board of Directors, the executive director, and trained staff. Achievement of these goals is evaluated internally as well as by the Allegheny County Department of Human Services and the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare.

Southwinds Inc, Today

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As the program expands, it remains committed to the belief that all individuals are capable of continuing development. Southwinds, Inc. offers the following services to assist each person in learning more complex skills and independent behaviors:

Help for each individual to set and pursue goals for personal growth.
Supervision of personalized training plans in daily living skills to supplement intregration into the community.
24-hour professional staff at each home.
Transportation to employment, workshops, therapeutic activity centers, recreational activities, and personal appointments.
Community relations and volunteer programs designed to assist in integrating individuals into their communities.
Public education in acceptance and support of these individuals as members of the community.