Pine Castle's Story

As one of the first organizations in Florida to serve children with special needs, Pine Castle helped pioneer the philosophy that individuals with intellectual/developmental (I/D) disabilities have the right to live full and productive lives.

Pine Castle was founded in 1952 by a group of 33 families of children with I/D disabilities. No local programs or schools existed at that time to provide support services, except for a few distant residential institutions run by the state. Parents were forced to choose between institutionalization or keeping their children at home.

In 1965, the public school system initiated a program for students with special needs. At that time, Pine Castle transitioned to a work and life skills training and activity center for adults with disabilities.

Pine Castle’s mission is to empower adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities through opportunities to Learn, Work and Connect.

Today, Pine Castle is a leader in serving adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and providing support to their families across Northeast Florida. More than 300 clients come through our programs daily learning valuable skills. From basic academic training and hands-on job experience to leisure activities and life skills coaching, Pine Castle provides a wide range of opportunities to adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.