For over five decades, Epic Opportunities has provided support, resources, programs and services to individuals living with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
During their long and important history, Epic Opportunities has focused on delivering holistic, person-centred service with the ultimate goal of empowering people in community and improving overall quality of life.
Epic – A Noteworthy Name
From 1972 to 2010, we operated under the name Hope Centre Inc. In June 2010, we began using the name Epic Opportunities. This new name reflects our goal of Empowering People In Community – advocating for people with intellectual disabilities and providing meaningful opportunities for them to participate and connect to their communities.
The Christian Reformed Churches of Winnipeg founded Hope Centre Inc. in 1972 to provide ministry and outreach to people living in the north end of Winnipeg. The first programs included Sunday school for children and Bible studies for women.
The original location on Alfred Avenue was torn down in 1981. Using grant money from the City of Winnipeg, a new location was built at 240 Powers Street.
By 1983, the organization had grown so much that it was necessary to re-structure into Hope Centre Health Care, Hope Centre Ministries and Hope Centre Inc. (now Epic Opportunities). We share a common history and enjoy friendly relationships with these organizations, but we now operate independently. Eventually, our support services moved to 1644 Dublin Avenue, operating there for approximately a decade before moving to our current location at 200-1600 Ness Avenue.
In 1976, a needs assessment showed that people living with intellectual and developmental disabilities needed more support services and programs and would benefit from an informal church structure.
The Christian Reformed Church called in a pastoral team from their Home Missions Program and they began offering services at Hope Centre Church in September 1977.
In 1981, the board of directors worked with the Province of Manitoba to develop our first day service for adults. It was located in the basement of Aberdeen Mennonite Church until construction at the new location – 240 Powers Street – was completed.
Inclusive and person-centred services are now offered at two locations in Winnipeg. Each location offers:
- Self-development and life-long learning
- Connecting and contributing in the community
- Career exploration
Empowering People in the Community
In 1987, Hope Centre began supporting four people to live in a house of their own. By 2010, people were being supported in more than 40 homes in Winnipeg.
A unique aspect of our service is that we generally have fewer than four people living in one home. This has enabled us to provide individualized, person-centred supports in warm home environments, improving personal and medical care and overall quality of life.
Our services have expanded to include independent living advocacy and supports in 1991 and connections – support for individuals preparing to move into their own home – in 1995.