Ebensburg Center is a licensed intermediate care facility which provides supports to people with Intellectual Disabilities. The people living at Ebensburg Center receive support in many aspects of life, including activities of daily living, recreation, vocational service, habilitative treatment, and health management.
Ebensburg Center utilizes best practices to create a healthy and safe environment which supports people with intellectual disabilities as they develop and implement the skills needed to have an Everyday Life in the community.
This scenic campus is located in Cambria Township, near the borough of Ebensburg, in central Cambria County. The campus is situated along Route 22 on 70 acres of beautiful landscape. Ebensburg Center is comprised of numerous modernized buildings that offer a comfortable and home like setting. These buildings are used for residential living and skill development which enhances and promotes an Everyday Life.
Ebensburg Center provides individualized supports reflecting each person’s goals and desires, specifically tailored to his or her needs. These supports include: 24 hour supported living, on staff physicians, pastoral care, therapeutic/vocational services, psychology support, registered/licensed dieticians, and participation in local community events and organizations. Various other ancillary departments provide services to ensure successful outcomes.
It is the mission of Ebensburg Center to provide supports which will afford people the opportunity to live the principles embodied in an Everyday Life.
Promoting compassion, respect, and valuing one another. Working together as a team and as part of the community to provide a home and a family way of living, respecting, and exercising rights and choices, and acknowledging each person’s needs, dreams, and desires.
The people living at Ebensburg Center are assured that their rights are both respected and protected. They exercise their inalienable rights as a citizen of the United States. Ebensburg Center is committed to ensuring that each person is provided the opportunity and encouraged to use their rights every day. These rights include:
In the early 1900’s the land was owned by a local family and housed an orphanage. In the 1950’s, the land was sold to the Department of Human Services, and the orphanage closed. The children were transferred to other orphanages in the area. The initial phase of construction for the Ebensburg State School and Hospital (now Ebensburg Center) began in 1956 and the facility opened in 1957. Ebensburg State School and Hospital was an annex of Selinsgrove Center, and initially 150 people were admitted in Ebensburg due to epilepsy. Ebensburg State School and Hospital became an independent facility in 1961.
The facilities population grew rapidly and a second phase of construction was completed in 1963. The people admitted to Ebensburg Center ranged from age 3 to 18. From 1961 to 1972, the Ebensburg State School was a medical and custodial care facility. After the implementation of the Right to Education Act of 1972, the model of Ebensburg State School converted from medical based to education based. In 1972 the census of Ebensburg State School was over 1200. In the late 70’s, the facility’s name was changed to Ebensburg Center. During this time period, many changes began to take place. The facility transitioned from a medical and custodial care facility to a person centered facility. Education, environmental improvements, community involvement, and the focus on rights became the priority. There was also an increase emphasis on family inclusion into the individuals every day life. During the late 80’s, Ebensburg Center successfully challenged a U.S. Department of Justice law suit. This suit alleged that inadequate services were being provided to the residents who resided at Ebensburg Center. Ebensburg Center and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania clearly demonstrated that the allegations were unfounded and the law suit, in its entirety, was dismissed in a U.S. Federal Court as unfounded.
The 1990’s brought about further positive changes with the implementation of the principles of “Everyday Lives”. This philosophy became the foundation for the changes which greatly enhanced each person’s self esteem and dignity. In this era, there was a focus on community living. Ebensburg Center continued and improved its habilitative training, and education to enhance the community living skills of each individual. This training afforded the individuals the skills needed to become integrated into their home communities.
As “Everyday Lives” evolved, several key elements of this philosophy became the guiding principles of Ebensburg Center. Some of these elements included: person centered planning, dual diagnosis (treatment of both mental health concerns in conjunction with intellectual disabilities), family empowerment, and community integration.
The late 90’s saw increased focus on the use of positive approaches regarding mental health supports leading to better diagnosis and treatment for individuals. A Quality Improvement department was added to augment the services being provided and ensure that each person’s desires and dreams for an every day life were achieved. Increased emphasis on Assistive Technology provided each individual with improved opportunity for communication and independence.
Early in the new millennium, Ebensburg Center’s population increased due to the admission of the individuals from the former Western Center and Altoona Center. Ebensburg Center’s community integration training provided opportunities for the newly admitted individuals to transition into their local community. The Individual Support Plan was also introduced, which used a team based approach to focus on each individual’s needs, desires, and dreams.
Today, we continue to improve our services and create new opportunities for the individuals to seek community employment. Community involvement and inclusion remain an important aspect of each person’s life. Ebensburg Center, using the guiding principles and philosophy of “Everyday Lives”, continues to move forward on the path of achieving a safe, happy, and healthy home like setting.
From the East:
From the West:
Ebensburg Center provides a variety of employment opportunities. For specific information regarding current and future openings please contact:
Human Resource Department
4501 Admiral Peary Highway
Ebensburg, PA 15931
Visit the State Civil Service Commission website at www.scsc.state.pa.us for additional information.
Contact Ebensburg Center at 814-472-7350
Nicole Ferrebee-Phillips, Facility Director