The History of Easterseals Southern Georgia & Northwest Florida
In March of 1941, Mr. and Mrs. Carl Huie raced against time to carry their daughter, Carlton, to Dr. Lawson Thorton and his orthopedic team at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. This was the beginning of the eight-year treatment for Carlton. It was then that Mrs. Huie made a vow that nothing would stop her until she had activated a rehabilitation center in Albany, Georgia to serve people with disabilities in South Georgia. After years of steadily reaching out to the community, Easterseals Southern Georgia opened in 1957 and began as a traditional medical rehabilitation program, founded by Mrs. Mildred Nix Huie.
Over the next years, Easterseals Southern Georgia grew very responsive to the unmet needs of its region and realized that there was always more that could be done. In 1992, the organization launched an aggressive plan to establish the 4 major program lines that are still prominent today: family support services, residential services, respite care, and job programs/vocational training.
In 2017 Easterseals Southern Georgia expanded its services beyond Southern Georgia by adding 14 counties in the Big Bend of Florida with an additional 4 counties in the Panhandle of Florida during 2023. At that time, our Easterseals organization began operating under the name of Easterseals Southern Georgia and Easterseals Northwest Florida.
Easterseals Southern Georgia and Northwest Florida creates solutions every day that change the lives of children, adults, and families with disabilities or special needs. Our mission is to provide exceptional services to ensure that all people with disabilities have equal opportunities to live, learn, work, and play in their communities.
We continue to live out our mission by offering a variety of programs and services that enable individuals to lead lives of equality, dignity, and independence. The motto that guides our work is “creating solutions… changing lives.”
For over 66 years, Easterseals has continued to be an organization with a constant presence for families in need. Easterseals Southern Georgia and Northwest Florida focuses on both children and adults diagnosed with developmental disabilities, a diagnosis of autism, or considered medically fragile. Easterseals Southern Georgia consistently serves thousands of individuals annually throughout 64-counties in Southern Georgia and 18-counties in Northwest Florida.