Extraordinary People: CDS Life Transitions

Extraordinary People

Local organization Continuing Developmental Services (CDS) helps so many in this community — from those with developmental disabilities, to veterans and seniors. 

It’s a big operation with a lot of support– but it didn’t start out that way.

“It’s amazing to me what it has turned into,” said Bob Donahue, one of the six founding members of CDS Life Transitions. 

His son Sean, born with developmental disabilities, was his motivation as there weren’t many resources at the time. 

“Our actual goal of forming the organization was to provide other parents like ourselves with the hope that when their children got to be adults, they’d have the services that they needed,” said Donahue.

Motivated by personal experiences, the six founding members got to work getting a charter. They opened in 1977.

“It was a struggle month to month hoping we were going to meet payroll and hoping we were going to be able to put the new programs in that we wanted to,” said Donahue. “It’s so wonderful to see nowadays everything that we have here.”

With community support they’ve now been able to serve so many, with housing, day programs, jobs, physical and social activities. CDS is helping each adult achieve their potential, whatever it may be. 

“Here we’re kind of all like family around here,” said Dan Sulimowicz.

“I like to work here and i like the people around me,” said Marlene Clark. “I have lots of friends.”

“I lived in CDS housing before, but now I moved out into the community and I really enjoy that,” said Patrick Gabriel.

“To see what’s been done and the level of programs that have been developed, etc., it’s just way beyond what we could’ve imagined,” said Donahue. 

There are three benches dedicated to the six founding members in honor of this year’s 40th anniversary celebration. 

Click here to learn how you can help CDS Life Transitions with their work, and to learn more about all of their programs.

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