It is with great sadness that we tell you of the passing of our longtime friend and most passionate advocate, Ms. Eleanor Elkin. Much of Ms. Elkin’s lifetime was dedicated to advocacy and steadfast support for the disability community. Ms. Elkin was among the group of parents who, in 1948 created The Arc of Philadelphia as an answer to the mistreatment and marginalization of individuals with disabilities. The parents who created The Arc labored tirelessly for the equal rights and human dignity of people with disabilities. This was a time when children with disabilities were sent to institutions and left with little to no resources. Ms. Elkin served in her long career as president of both The Arc of the United States and The Arc of Pennsylvania. She was also active in the movement to close Pennhurst and move people with developmental disabilities out of institutions. Ms. Elkin’s son, Richard, was a long-time participant in SpArc Services’ cultural arts program. Ms. Elkin will be missed by our organization and by the disability community as a whole, but her legacy will live on and be celebrated for years to come.
In lieu of flowers, donation are requested to support the Cultural Arts Center at SpArc Services. Donations can be made online at SpARc Services' website or via the USPS at 2350 W. Westmoreland Street, Philadelphia, PA 19140.