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  • Formed in 1982, the Special Leisure Services Foundation (SLSF) works with local corporations, civic groups, and individuals to help residents with disabilitites. Through various fundraising events, SLSF is a resource provider to both the Northwest Special Recreation Association and Area 18 Special Olympics.

    Funds are raised through private grants, special events, and corporate funding. Provate grants are solicited on an ongoing basis from foundations and civic organizations that support programs for people with disabilities. Fundraising special events are a year round commitment of the foundation. These events benefit and fulfill a large portion of the $750,000 fundraising goal.

    There are 5 major program areas supported by the Special Leisure Services Foundation:
    • Accessible Transportation - Through various grants and foundation events, SLSF helps to provide funding for the vehicles necessary to provide transportation for the various recreation programs offered through the Northwest Special Recreation association.
    • General Program Support - The Foundation purchases equipment which makes recreation activites or social progams accessible for individuals with special needs. These items allow the participant to overcome barriers caused by a disabling condition.
    • Inclusion Programs - Programs of inclusion represent a commitment to allow an individual with a disability to mainstream into a park district program. The foundation provides funding so that necessary training, additional aids and adaptive equipment can be provided to make this transition successful.
    • Scholarships - The foundation subsidizes scholarships for those in economic need to provide funds for participation in the programs offered by the Northwest Special Recreation Association.
    • Special Olympics - Special Olympics represents approximately 1,000 athletes competing in their local community, giving them the opportunity to advance to district, state, and information competition. The foundation provides funds to help cover the fees for tournaments, travel, transportation, uniforms and equipment.