Commemorating the 70th Anniversary of Mary Cariola Children's Center on May 9, 2019

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Senate Resolution No. 1074


COMMEMORATING the 70th Anniversary of Mary Cariola
Children's Center on May 9, 2019

WHEREAS, It is the sense of this Legislative Body that the quality
and character of life in this great Empire State is greatly enriched by
the faithful and diligent work of those organizations which serve to
meet the special needs of the community and its citizenry; and

WHEREAS, Attendant to such concern, and in full accord with its
long-standing traditions, this Legislative Body is justly proud to
commemorate the 70th Anniversary of Mary Cariola Children's Center, to
be celebrated with an event on Thursday, May 9, 2019, at The Strong
Museum of Play in Rochester, New York; and

WHEREAS, For seven decades, Mary Cariola Children's Center has
served people with complex disabilities through personalized,
interdisciplinary, evidence-based education and life skill solutions
which inspire and empower them and their families; and

WHEREAS, Born in 1896, Mary Cariola and her family moved to an
Italian-American community in Rochester when she was a child; as a
teenager, she served as an interpreter and advocate for her immigrant
neighbors who had difficulty communicating in their new culture; this
was just the beginning of her fight for other people's rights; and

WHEREAS, Later, Mary Cariola worked as a deputy employment
certification officer for the Rochester Board of Education, and then as
a caseworker for the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to children,
where she observed the hardships of discrimination, poverty and
unacceptable treatment of children; and

WHEREAS, In the 1940s, children with disabilities were often placed
in institutions; Mary Cariola's nephew, Butchie, was born with severe
developmental and physical disabilities, and she could not imagine him
being institutionalized; and

WHEREAS, Mary Cariola took the initiative and joined forces with six
other families and business leaders, to raise the necessary funds, and
founded The Day Care Center for Handicapped Children, designed to
provide social, recreational and vocational experiences for children not
eligible for public school, within the limits of their capacity; the
Center opened in 1949 with eight students; and

WHEREAS, In 1977, the Center was renamed Mary Cariola Children's
Center, 10 years before her death, to honor her dedication to offering
the highest quality innovative educational programs and small group
homes for individuals with complex disabilities; and

WHEREAS, Mary Cariola Children's Center was the first in the nation
to open a group home for children and youth with significant behavior
management needs, and the first to offer a sensory room which uses
special lighting, music, and objects used as a therapy for children with
limited communication skills; and

WHEREAS, Today, Mary Cariola Children's Center serves over 450
individuals in both preschool and school age programs on two school
campuses; students come from 53 different school districts and 11
counties; and

WHEREAS, Students and families are offered numerous services
including nursing; OT/PT; behavior, music, Snoezelen, vision and speech
therapies; Telemedicine; assistive technology, psychological,
psychiatric, neurology and nutrition consults; adapted physical
education; transition programs, social work, Dental Desensitization, and
URMC Development and Behavioral Pediatrics; and

WHEREAS, The residential program provides 24-hour care in a family
setting to small groups of children and youth with multiple disabilities
and behavior management needs; the program's six residential facilities
located throughout Monroe County serve 44 residents, with six to nine in
each home; and

WHEREAS, The success of Mary Cariola Children's Center is in direct
correlation to the efforts of its staff, whose involvement is, and
always has been, characterized by an impressive commitment, an unbridled
enthusiasm, and an uncompromising standard of excellence in all
endeavors on behalf of the institution and the community it serves; and

WHEREAS, It is the custom of this Legislative Body that those
organizations which unselfishly devote their energy, talent and
thoughtful care on behalf of improving the quality and dignity of life
in the community, are worthy and due full praise and recognition for
their noble and dedicated efforts; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That this Legislative Body pause in its deliberations to
commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the Mary Cariola Children's Center
on May 9, 2019; and be it further

RESOLVED, That a copy of this Resolution, suitably engrossed, be
transmitted to the Mary Cariola Children's Center.


  • 10 / Apr / 2019
  • 30 / Apr / 2019
  • 30 / Apr / 2019

Resolution Details

Law Section:
Resolutions, Legislative


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