What started as a small group of concerned parents and friends has grown to the largest provider of person-centered supports and specialized training for adults with developmental disabilities in Polk County.
Alliance for Independence was established by parents and friends who formed the Polk County Association for Retarded Children in March of 1954. They believed in the abilities of individuals with disabilities and the importance of them becoming an integral part of their community.
The Sheltered Workshop was started for adolescents ages 16 and over.
The Polk County Association for Retarded Children changed its name to the Polk County Association for Retarded Citizens. This name change brought the program in line with the needs of the community as special education programs were introduced into the public school system. The inclusion of developmentally disabled children in the school system refocused AFI’s program toward adults.
The Polk County Association for Retarded Citizens changed its name to the Polk County Association for Handicapped Citizens.
PCAHC changed its name to Alliance for Independence (AFI).
AFI Celebrates 60 years of Excellence!
For over 60 years, Alliance for Independence has provided a wide array of services to thousands of developmentally disabled adults in Polk County. AFI is a highly recognized multi-service community association with a well-defined mission that promotes personal independence. AFI’s curriculums and materials are being modeled across the district and state by other organizations serving the disabled.
As the individuals we serve dream of employment, relationships, community involvement and a more independent way of life, the services provided by AFI are more important than ever.