The start of a new decade brought with it a new name for our organization: The Easter Seal Society for Crippled Children and Adults of Montana. Speech therapy, audiology services and adult training emerged as the primary services provided during the 1970s. This decade also saw the start of our affiliation with Goodwill Industries.
Speech and language services in schools
In the fall of 1972 our organization began fulfilling new speech and language contracts in six public school systems in the state of Montana. Early in 1973, 40 additional contracts were signed with Montana school systems. This marked the start of a more than decade-long relationship with Montana schools, that included audiology services and hearing conservation programs, as well as speech and language therapy. During the 1980s and 1990s as school districts began hiring their own therapists, our focus shifted more toward our programs serving adults with disabilities.
First Accreditation by Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF)
During 1976, our adult training program in Great Falls was serving 42 clients, providing a sheltered work experience that enabled them to learn woodworking, assembly, manufacturing, and other skills. At this time, we sought and received the first of what would be many subsequent accreditations of our programs for adults with disabilities by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF).