Formerly known as the Scottsdale Foundation for the Handicapped, STARS was founded in 1973 by a small group of parents concerned with the lack of resources for their developmentally disabled children. Affectionately referred to as “Las Madrinas” (the Godmothers), what started in a small, donated trailer with only a few participants and volunteers has become an organization with two thriving locations that serve 200 individuals everyday.

During our 40-year history, STARS has committed itself to providing an array of high-quality, integrated services to adults with disabilities in the metro Phoenix area. Three primary program areas: Day Programs, Vocational & Employment Services and Transition Services, continue to create a lifetime support system for our participants and their families.

STARS’ Timeline

1973: Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped and the Scottsdale Foundation for the Handicapped forged a collaborative service contract with their Board of Directors. The first of its kind in Arizona.

1973: Las Madrinas, or the Godmothers, 80-member auxiliary was formed, laying the foundation for STARS. They are considered the founders of the agency.

1974: The first STARS Work Center opened at the JayCee Clubhouse, now the Scottsdale Stadium.

1977: Plans for a residential facility, the Villa de Las Madrinas, get underway with the Arizona State University Architecture and Interior Design departments adopting it as their special Project.

1980: STARS moved to its current headquarters at 7507 E. Osborn Road and began offering Day Programs in addition to Work Center opportunities.

1982: Villa de Las Madrinas opened its doors at 1350 N. 77th Street with 16 participants gaining housing and supportive services.

1995: The supportive employment enclave at Fry’s Food Stores, where many participants work, is established.

1999: A second facility providing Day Program and Work Center Services opened in the Scottsdale Airpark.

2004: Scottsdale Foundation for the Handicapped (SFH) adopted its new name, Scottsdale Training & Rehabilitation Services, or STARS.

2010: In partnership with the Scottsdale Unified School District, STARS established the Cholla Special Needs Community Campus in north Scottsdale to provide access to a continuum of supportive programs and services for individuals with special needs ranging in age from pre-school to adult aged. STARS’ programs include the Community Resource Center and Transitions Program.

2011: STARS establishes supportive employment enclaves at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn and Shea within the Environmental Services Department.

2011: STARS began providing Transitions Services to teens in high school and hosted our first Summer Camper to introduce teens to the Young Adult Training and Transition Program.