Founded in 1959, in Middletown, New York by the Isaacs Family, Crystal Run Village first operated as a summer camp and then as a private residential school for children with disabilities. Today, CRVI programs serve more than 700 people with developmental and intellectual disabilities and their families in three counties in New York’s Mid-Hudson and Catskill regions. CRVI with an operating budget of $37 million, employs approximately 700 employees to carry out its mission of providing services for the integration and empowerment of people with disabilities.
Expansion of CRVI began soon after the 1972 exposure of the unacceptable living conditions that people with disabilities were faced with at institutions like Willowbrook. The Isaacs purchased and renovated a former Catskill resort, the Flagler Hotel in Fallsburg in anticipation of the deinstitutionalization of people with developmental disabilities.
On December 27, 1973, approximately 150 individuals arrived at the renovated Fallsburg Campus. Many of these individuals came from huge institutions like Letchworth and Wassaic and others came from private schools like Devereaux and Greenwood.
In 1979, a group of parents established the facility as a non-profit corporation, after purchasing the school from the retiring Isaacs Family. The children in the school grew-up, stayed, and by 1985 the agency became a residential program primarily for adults.
In 1990 the agency now called New York Office for People With Developmental Disabilities issued a call to agencies to apply for the responsibility of providing care to people living in the bankrupt institution at Greer-Woodycrest in Pomona, New York. As lead agency in a consortium of caregivers in Orange and Rockland Counties, CRVI was awarded the contract to oversee the transition to new and vastly improved care for the children and adults of Greer-Woodycrest.
In what has been described as an “incredible feat of skilled management and astute provision of care,” all 108 Greer-Woodycrest people were in new homes within two years with 65 coming to live in programs directly managed by CRVI. The special needs of individuals whose disabilities presented significant challenges, resulted in the design of a unique system of habilitation.
By the beginning of 2002, all of the people living on the three CRVI campuses relocated to 44 residences in the communities of Orange, Rockland and Sullivan Counties. At the time of the agency’s 50th anniversary in 2009, its Residential Program was compromised of 50 separate community homes and numerous supported apartments.
In addition to residential services, the agency offers Vocational and Skill Development Programs, Service Coordination, Respite House and Community Habilitation. Most recently CRVI has been awarded the opportunity to open residences for individuals living in the community with their families. These individuals have parents who may be getting on in years and become unable to care for their children, or they’re young people who have come of age and have the desire to live more independently and experience a life of their own.