Why One Is Sometimes Better Than Two
When SunUp and ARC joined forces last year, some locals doubted the merger would work. How wrong can you be?
photography by Denise Ritchie
The Arts and Crafts room at SunUp ARC’s west campus is a hub of activity and creativity as Nick Holthaus and Robert Garcia demonstrate their painting skills for Mary Beth Vallar, longtime volunteer and chair of the nonprofit organization’s board of directors.
Some questioned the wisdom of the merger when SunUp and the Abilities Resource Center (ARC) announced they were joining forces in March of last year. They needn’t have. Since the two organizations that provide programs and services for developmentally and intellectually disabled adults officially became one, SunUp ARC has proven to be a unified, strong and effective agency that impacts the lives of 180 individuals daily.
“The time was right for them come together,” says executive director Chuck Bradley. “Over the years there had been talk about merging but nothing ever came of it. ARC, which dates back to 1975, was the older and larger of the two; SunUp got its start in 1992. I think the impetus that finally made it happen was when ARC board members realized they desperately needed to renovate their building. That meant raising money. SunUp’s purpose has always been to create a campus that would include housing opportunities. The education center got built but they never got into a capital campaign to fund building the residences.”
Read the entire article in the September/October 2013 issue