Bancroft is a leading provider of programs and supports for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, autism and acquired brain injuries. Our services include special education, vocational training and supported employment, structured day programs, campus and community living programs, short-term behavioral stabilization services for children, in-home and outpatient services.
A private, nonprofit organization, Bancroft was founded in Haddonfield, N.J., in 1883. Over the years, we have grown to become the fifth-largest private employer in Camden County. We currently serve more than 800 children and adults in settings throughout Camden, Burlington, Gloucester, Ocean, Middlesex and Salem counties in New Jersey, and in Delaware. In October 2009, the organization began operating a Philadelphia, Pa., program—The Walker Center at Bancroft—which serves adults.
For over 125 years, Bancroft has been making a difference in the lives of many. The organization is well known for helping people with disabilities achieve fulfilling lives while improving their function, activity and participation in society. Bancroft’s reputation for excellence is based on its commitment to providing a spectrum of individualized services, treating each person with respect and dignity, and providing services in an encouraging and supportive environment.
Bancroft was founded in 1883 as one of the nation's first private schools for children with developmental disabilities. Today, this leading nonprofit organization helps people of all ages reach their full potential for fulfilling and productive lives.
It all began with one remarkable woman — a young Philadelphia teacher named Margaret Bancroft. At the time, children with developmental disabilities weren't usually given the benefits of an education. But Margaret realized that such children have the ability to learn and succeed if given individualized attention, patience and love. She decided to devote her life to this purpose.
Margaret started her school with one pupil in a rented house just a few blocks from the current Haddonfield campus. As word of her success spread, her school grew and acquired another Haddonfield property, as well as a summer site in Maine.
After Margaret died in 1912, she was succeeded by a series of skilled leaders, most of whom served Bancroft for decades. Dr. Ernest Farrington, sisters Jenzia and Miriam Cooley, Dr. Clarence York, Dr. George Niemann, Joseph Hess, and Dr. Robert Martin all made lasting contributions to the organization.
Over the years, the organization became a leader in helping people live as independently as possible, through jobs, homes and leisure activities in their local communities.
Currently, Bancroft is again helmed by an accomplished woman and outstanding leader. President Toni Pergolin helped stabilize the organization's economic condition in 2004 and 2005, after severe financial challenges threatened its very existence. While she initially joined the organization as chief financial officer, Pergolin soon assumed larger responsibilities. She became a vice president, then chief operating officer. In 2006, she was appointed president. Along the way, Pergolin has built a strong leadership team in the areas of both clinical and operations management.
Bancroft celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2008, and is well-positioned for a bright future. Combining rich tradition with an advanced vision, Bancroft continues to lead the way in its field - helping people with disabilities learn, grow and flourish.
Bancroft’s mission is to ensure that every person is given opportunities for lifelong learning and fulfillment.
We do this by altering perceptions, and by supporting those with intellectual and developmental challenges and acquired brain injuries in achieving their life goals as valued and respected members of our world.
RESPECT encompasses an array of attributes that clearly define who we are at Bancroft. It is our core value that helps unify the organization around our brand essence and provides the framework for supports and services, decision-making and working together.
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