Niagara Cerebral Palsy officials announced yesterday the nonprofit human services agency will now be known as Empower. The 61-year-old organization also unveiled a new logo and website to supporters last evening at a reception held at the Four Points by Sheraton in Niagara Falls.
Executive Director Jeff Paterson said the agency serves hundreds of people each year who do not have cerebral palsy, so it made sense to update the organization's name.
"When 'cerebral palsy' is part of your name, it's easy to assume that your agency exclusively serves people with cerebral palsy. Our services are much more inclusive than that," he said.
Empower operates a preschool for children with developmental delays and disabilities as well as typically developing children. The agency provides service coordination, job training and placement, day programs and housing for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Empower's community clinic provides podiatry, audiology, dental care and physical therapy for disabled and non-disabled adults.
Led by Community Development Coordinator Katharine Cassens, a team of employees and board members met for about a year to provide input to the rebranding process. Once agency leaders selected Empower as the new name, Orchard Park-based Riveter Design was hired to create a logo and visual elements of the new identity. Buffalo-based 12 Grain Studio is designing the new website, www.empower-wny.org. It will be live in early October.
With 300 employees and a $14 million budget, Empower is one of Western New York's 50 largest nonprofit organizations. The administrative offices, preschool, community clinic and service coordination program are located in the Town of Niagara. The vocational division is based in Niagara Falls, while residential facilities are located throughout Niagara County. Licensed by the New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities and the New York State Education Department, Empower is an affiliate of the Cerebral Palsy Associations of New York and is a member agency of the United Way of Greater Niagara.