About Us

  

Our mission is to serve people with disabilities and their families through
employment, social, and respite opportunities. Our goal is to empower people with disabilities to discover and achieve their own 'I CAN' statement.

ICAN is a nonprofit organization that has been serving the community for over 40 years. We provide quality recreational, employment, empowerment, and socialization programs for Southern California’s adults with physical and developmental disabilities, meeting the needs of not just the individual, but his or her entire family.

 



 A Legacy of Servicedivider

 

1975: Pat Hammond Launches Acampar Organization

Pat Hammond, a schoolteacher for the physically disabled, saw the need for increased relational support and investment in persons with disabilities. He launches the organization Acampar with the intention of providing a recreational experience that is emotionally engaging, relationally meaningful, and spiritually uplifting. Acampar runs a summer program facilitating 8 to 10 camps each year.



1980: Pat Entrusts Acampar to Hope Chapel

Pat entrusts Acampar to Hope Chapel, where it becomes "Special Ministries". Under the leadership of Howard Mayeda, this ministry expands to provide year-round services including weekly Sunday school, weekend programs, and winter camps in addition to the already existing summer camps.



 

1996: Scott Elliott Becomes Director

When leaving to pastor his own church, Howard hands over the ministry to Scott Elliott. The ministry continues to expand, working with both youth and adults with developmental disabilities. A biweekly Saturday program is established.



2012: The ICAN Vision

Special Ministries becomes "ICAN", creating a vision in which its clients will discover and achieve their own "I Can" Statements. ICAN becomes a distinct 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.



2015: ICAN Introduces Supported Employment Services

In May, ICAN establishes its supported employment services, a program designed to facilitate job placement and job coaching for individuals with disabilities in their local communities. This effort also results in the establishment of "Print with a Purpose", a microenterprise that employs people with developmental disabilities.



 

2016: Life Skills Day Program Launches

In January, ICAN launches its own brand new life skills day program with the goal of helping participants develop social, fitness, and transportation skills. These clubs are designed to reflect our mission of supporting individuals with disabilities and their families.