History of The Epilepsy Center of Northwest Ohio
Mouse over the timeline to display important dates in The Epilepsy Center's history:
The group of parents incorporated in June 24, 1977 as The Epilepsy Association Center of Northwestern Ohio, hereinafter called "The Epilepsy Center" serving the Counties of Erie, Sandusky, Ottawa, Wood, Lucas, Henry, Fulton, Williams, Defiance and Paulding. The Epilepsy Center was organized by and was part of the Epilepsy Association of Ohio in Columbus. The newly formed Epilepsy Center's location was on 2023 Collingwood Blvd. 3rd Floor just above the old Flower Hospital.
Based on the first recorded Board of Trustees Meeting minutes from September 9, 1977 the first Executive Director was C. Lynne Halbert and the first Board President was David McDonagh who was also the Director of Adult Program at Lucas County Board of Mental Retardation.In October 1978 the Epilepsy Center became affiliated with United Way and the first counselor, Virginia King was hired to provide services to people with epilepsy living in the community independently or with their families.In 1979 the Epilepsy Center opened the first group home, the Barbara Jean McDonagh Home on Parkside Boulevard, in memory of the daughter of Bernard and Juanita McDonagh who were instrumental in the growth of the Epilepsy Center. Within a short period of time the home was certified as an Intermediate Care Facility (ICF) receiving Medicaid funding. Today, the home houses eight adult men and women with epilepsy/developmental disabilities. In August 2, 1980 the Epilepsy Center moved to a new location on 1830 West Bancroft near the Ottawa Tavern. During the same time, the Center became the recipient of two Title XX contracts through funding from federal block grants. This funding allowed the center to offer expanded services to people with epilepsy and starting a socialization support group for people with other developmental disabilities as well.In 1984 the Center became an affiliate of the Epilepsy Foundation of America (EFA). The Center started to expand its services by opening a satellite office in Henry County and by hiring a second counselor, Lyn Doll, as the Parent and Child Coordinator.In May 1985 the Center moved to a new location on 151 N. Michigan, Suite 315 in Davis Building. Only one year later, in May 1986 the Center suffered extreme fire damage and financial losses valued to over $15,000.00 as a consequence of the bombing of the Center of Choice situated directly under the Epilepsy Center in Davis Building.In September 9, 1986 the Epilepsy Center opened a second group home, the Jean Scott Furney Home on Glendale Avenue, named in honor of the Congresswoman Linda Furney's mother. Within a short time the facility was licensed as an Intermediate Care Facility receiving Medicaid funding. Today the home houses six adults with epilepsy/developmental disabilities.In 1989 the Epilepsy Center offered the first Family Camp for children with epilepsy and their families providing to all an opportunity for fun, socialization and education in a warm and accepting environment. This event was created by Kathy Sanks, a former Toledoan and an active Board Member of the Los Angeles County Epilepsy Society. The Family Camp continues to grow every year. This year the "Pirates of Lake Libbey" family camp was attended by 89 people.
By far the most successful was the PGT (Practically a Golf Tournament) event that started in 1989. The next year the event expanded and each golf hole was designed by architects built by local builders and sponsored by major corporations in town.In 1991 Supported Living/Individual Option Waiver was added as a new program offered by the Epilepsy Center. This program offers another avenue of providing services to individuals while they live in their own homes or with their parents. The flexibility of this program allows the client to choose services from a provider for as little as a few hours to as much as 24 hours a day. In 1993 the PGT was moved to Franklin Park Mall which brought greater visibility and increased our revenues.In 1996 the Epilepsy Center moved to 5405 Southwyck Boulevard, Suite 100.In 2001 we added another fund raising event called a Funky Formal Gala "Grazing on the Greens" that included food grazing donated by major restaurants in town, dancing and a Silent Auction.The PGT and the Gala continued until 2005 when we moved both events to the Erie Street Market.The Vocational and Adult Day Services Program began in 2007. The mission of the Vocational Program is to provide stimulating services and employment opportunities on an individual basis to promote choice, education and independence resulting in greater community inclusion. Currently, Adult Day Services running at capacity almost daily, since then we have added Supported Employment for clients working in our community and finally just recently began our Non Medical Transportation service, providing transportation to and from work or Adult Day Services. The Vocational Program has and will continue to benefit so many individuals. This has only added to our wonderful programs administered in your community by the Epilepsy Center.
In 2007 The Epilepsy Center celebrated 30 years of providing services with a formal gala at Stone Oak Country Club.The Epilepsy Center moved to its current location at 1545 Holland Road in Maumee in 2009.May 2, 2011 - The Epilepsy Center purchased a new/used bus and showcased its new marketing look by wrapping the bus.
May 20, 2011 - The 23rd Annual PGT moved outside for the first time in its history. This year it was located at Levis Commons by the clock tower and was a fun filled event, complete with drink tent, 18 holes, DJ and raffles.
About The Epilepsy Center of Northwest Ohio
The roots of the Epilepsy Center started with a small group of parents concerned with their children having epilepsy. They formed a support group that started to meet on the campus of what was then known as MCO (now known as UTMC).
They incorporated in June, 1977 as The Epilepsy Association Center of Northwestern Ohio, now known as “The Epilepsy Center”. The Center’s goals were to promote, support, and encourage activities for the prevention and the treatment of epilepsy, to educate the general public about epilepsy to eradicate misconceptions, to promote economic opportunities for people with epilepsy, and to provide programs, activities, and support for people with epilepsy.
We have seen many changes over the years and have been blessed to be able to continue to provide quality services in our communities. We have grown to see the inclusion of people who have developmental disabilities in our residential program. Our residential program has grown to see the development of an Adult Day Services Program that includes non-medical transportation. We are offering new programs for the community starting in February, 2013 and we continue to offer free educational programs through our Living with Epilepsy series.
Statistics show that 1 in 10 people will have some type of seizure in their lifetime. Some may have only one mild seizure that they never knew they had. Others will have seizures that reoccur—epilepsy—and will need support, education, and understanding to help them achieve their highest quality of life.
We are proud to be able to serve those with epilepsy and those with developmental disabilities and their families and friends. The work we do at The Center is not “just a job”, it is an opportunity for us to “fulfill a vocation”. While we aim to enrich the lives of others, they, too, are enriching our lives.
Funding for programs and services outside of the residential stream are obtained through our fundraising events—The PGT (Practically a Golf Tournament) and our Annual Celebration—and through general contributions to The Center. Please remember The Epilepsy Center when you decide on your charity giving as we continue to live our mission.
The Mission of the Epilepsy Center of Northwest Ohio is to improve the lives of people affected by epilepsy and those with developmental disabilities.
People with epilepsy and those with developmental disabilities will attain the highest quality of life and gain full acceptance and understanding from the community.