SWSRA was formed in 1981 to provide year-round quality recreation programs and services for individuals with disabilities or special needs. SWSRA programs are designed to increase independence and enhance the quality of life for each individual. A wide variety of programs are available for individuals from early childhood through adulthood. The programs are designed to meet the individual recreation needs of any person who is in special education classes, participates in a sheltered workshop, is referred to SWSRA from a local hospital or rehabilitation center, or whose special needs restrict or prohibit their participation in traditional park district or recreation department programs. This would include individuals who have varying degrees of physical or mental disabilities, learning disabilities, behavior disorders, attention deficit disorders, and hearing or visual impairments.