SPECIAL APPEAL: Reseda Ranch Home

Dear Family and Friends:

Over sixty years ago, New Horizons was founded by bold parents with a dream of a brighter future for their children who had Down syndrome.  At that time, children with disabilities were often sheltered, kept out of sight, and had little or no opportunity for education, social interaction, or life in the community. These parents shared the same hope for their children that any parent has: to be happy, fulfilled, and find their way to live a meaningful life. Those dreams took shape first as a pre-school and school, then as a job training center, and in the late 1970’s as a residential group home to promote independent living.

“In 1977, when we pooled our money together to purchase a residential home for the kids, many people thought we were unrealistic and taking a huge risk,” says Larry Diamond, a member of New Horizons’ Emeritus Council. He is also the father of Sheryl and is one of the founding parents. “In our hearts and minds, we believed that our daughters and sons should be like other young adults, be included in their community, and have the opportunity to live – with their peers. We parents were not going to be around forever, and they needed to be able to live on their own.”

The success of these homes, independence for the residents, and the peace of mind it brought to their parents, inspired New Horizons to open eleven additional homes over the next 40 years, including several homes recently adapted to accommodate those who are most medically fragile. With support from friends like you, over 500 individuals have benefitted from these homes, and the residential support New Horizons provides.

However, in recent years we have seen the aging of long-time family members and the clients who have been part of our community.  Nationwide, over 850,000 adults with intellectual disabilities over the age of 60 are living with a caregiver. New Horizons has joined the National Task Group on Intellectual Disabilities and Dementia Practices and partnered with the Alzheimer’s Society to address these aging issues. We have become aware that nearly 99% of those with Down syndrome will experience early onset of dementia/Alzheimer, sometimes as early as age 40.

In response, New Horizons has been inspired by our “founding parents,” and developed a specialized group home for individuals with intellectual disabilities and early onset of dementia or Alzheimer’s, one of the first of its kind in the Western United States. With an established waiting list of residents ready to move-in, we know this home will meet a great need.

We are excited to share with you that construction will be done in the Fall on New Horizons’ Reseda Ranch Home!  We will soon be providing specialized programming, so these residents will live in a caring and kind environment, assuring their “golden years” are happy and hopeful.

To fully prepare and furnish this home with medical equipment, furniture, therapeutic devices, patio furniture and exercise equipment, we are asking for your help. The budget for these items is $45,000. Your gift of any amount is needed now, and will help make this house a home.  

Please join us in continuing the dreams and hopes of New Horizons’ founding parents, to provide a special home where aging people with special needs and dementia will live with dignity, as independently as possible. Their “golden years” will be lived out in a place that is safe, suited to their unique needs, and where they are surrounded with care and compassion…they will be home.

Thank you for your support, we look forward to receiving your donation!

Sincerely,

John D. Bunzel
Chairman, Board of Directors

Roschell Ashley
Interim CEO

Larry and Sheryl Diamond,
father and daughter.