News | Written By Northwest Center Staff

One Month Of Awareness, A Lifetime Of Inclusion

Colorful marker artwork from mixed media artist Eileen Schofield shows bright green, red, purplem and blue organic and geometric shapes bouncing around on a light blue background.

Artwork from mixed media artist Eileen Schofield at the Art Enables studio in Washington DC.

From the very start, Northwest Center has led the inclusion revolution. In the early 1960s, four Seattle moms started their own schools where children with disabilities could learn and grow. Their goal was to provide education to children who were barred from public schools. It didn’t take long for other parents to join in, and in 1965 Northwest Center officially opened its doors to students with disabilities from across Seattle.

Our founding mothers spent the rest of their careers as advocates working towards a future where people of all abilities can receive an education, find meaningful employment, and reach their full potential.

As we kick off National Developmental Disability Awareness Month, we’re proud to be an organization that helps build inclusive communities for people of all abilities, from Early Learning classrooms where kids with and without disabilities share learning and playtime, and in employment services where we find employment opportunities that are meaningful and beneficial to both our clients and their employers.

And because 33% of our own organization is made up of people with a documented disability, we understand that not only are inclusive workplaces great for business, bringing better efficiency, retention, and other benefits, but also that working with people of all abilities builds strong friendships, connections, and partnerships that last for life.

Stories like that of Preston, Laethan, Sandra, Jackson, Anna, and Sandy are just the tip of the iceberg. Their experiences show the strength our community gains when people of all abilities learn and work together.

Our founding mothers started an inclusion revolution. But we’re just getting started.