2 Wyoming companies expect merger will expand social services for the disabled

2014-04-09T08:00:00Z 2 Wyoming companies expect merger will expand social services for the disabledBy TOM DIXON Casper Star-Tribune The Billings Gazette
April 09, 2014 8:00 am  • 

CASPER, Wyo. — Officials at two Casper-based social services organizations say a July 1 merger will increase the variety and availability of resources for people with disabilities and brain injuries.

“We’ve known each other a long time, and we’ve come to the conclusion that our strengths could serve people better by us joining forces,” said Chris Boston, executive director of NOWCAP Services.

NOWCAP opened in 1985. It provides therapy, rehabilitation, nursing and employment opportunities for people with disabilities and brain injuries.

Their businesses include custodial contracts for local federal buildings and BLM campgrounds, as well as an electronics recycling business. All told, NOWCAP programs support 130 people statewide and employ 190 people.

The staff is also heavily involved at the state level, working with both the Legislature and the Department of Health.

Eagle Ability Services Inc., co-owned by J.D. Wolfe and Lacy Knight, opened in 2008 and works mostly with people who require less support, Boston said.

The company began as a residential program but soon expanded into employment services.

Eagle now owns and operates Movie Buff near downtown Casper and A Cuppa Joe on the east side. The company also operates programs in Douglas, Cody, Rock Springs and Worland.

Combined, the businesses employ 70 people with disabilities and 225 people statewide.

“Employment is a really big portion of any person’s life; it gives people an identity, accomplishments, and lets us earn a paycheck and have money to do what we want,” Boston said. “This merger just expands on those things.”

The merger with Eagle Ability will also allow NOWCAP to serve a wider spectrum of people, from those who need intense care to those who are mostly independent.

Boston said all Eagle Ability employees are being offered positions with NOWCAP, and everyone being provided services by Eagle Ability will be able to continue those services.

Officials with Eagle Ability did not return an afternoon phone call request for an interview.

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