Over the last several years Douglas ARC was asked to enter into a contract to provide transportation services for the senior citizens of Douglas that participate in the noon meals, and meals on wheels program at the senior site. Douglas ARC is responsible to pick up the seniors for lunch and take them home afterwards. On Tuesday after lunch the seniors are given rides to and from medical appointments. On Thursday after they have eaten they are given rides to the local grocery stores to purchase needed items, before they are taken home.
Due to a lack of funding from the state contracts, Douglas ARC has found it necessary to broaden its funding sources. The City of Douglas and Cochise County are now co-funding this project.
In 1976 Douglas ARC started a whole new adventure. For the first time the individuals that attended the day program were going out into the community and doing things. Not just to be seen, but to actually go into people’s homes and yards and do yard work. These people that society thought should be warehoused into the unknown were now working, getting paid and being taxpayers.
These people became customers to local businessmen. They became consumers who were going to the movies, buying lunches, purchasing work clothes, and even donating money into their church collection plates. Instead of being separated from Douglas they became part of Douglas
The male adults were taught how to use power equipment such as lawnmowers, string trimmers, gas blowers, rototillers, riding lawn mowers, gas sidewalk edgers, etc.
For the first time people were given control of something with power. to use something they were told they should stay away from.
Today the Douglas ARC Chore Crew receives 3-4 calls per day to perform work. By the first of May the Chore Crew has a full schedule of work through the end of October. Most of these customers are repeat customers from many years. The success of the Chore Crew encouraged the Douglas ARC to accept a contract with the City of Douglas to perform the grounds maintenance for all the low income housing for the City of Douglas. This contract is still going strong today. (over twenty five acres)
The success of the chore crew encouraged the Douglas ARC accept a contract a few years later to cook meals for the area seniors. This became a huge success and is still in existence for more than twenty years later.