All services offered by the Developmental Disabilities Association are accredited by CARF. CARF accreditation certifies that the practices and policies of the Developmental Disabilities Association meet or exceed a comprehensive list of international standards that can be applied to Community Service Agencies. Accreditation is achieved following a review of practice by a qualified team of surveyors.


In June of 2015 a team of 4 CARF Surveyors rated the Association on more than 900 Standards and the result was outstanding!

The 2015 Survey resulted in the Association’s fifth 3-year accreditation award.

(The others were in: 2003, 2006, 2009, and 2012)

The CARF survey report recognizes the Association for quality and innovation in creating person centered services that achieve meaningful results for individuals and families.

Some of the key strengths of DDA as identified by The CARF Survey team are highlighted below:

  • The organizational culture at DDA appears to be strong and healthy. The principles and core values of the organization are clearly articulated and consistently honoured in all relationships and throughout all program activities.
  • The leadership at DDA is highly respected, both inside and outside of the organization. DDA is considered a leader in the sector in the Vancouver area and beyond, due in large part to the exceptional level of leadership at the organization, from both an executive and governance perspective.
  • DDA has developed excellent plans related to critical areas of operations, including the risk management, accessibility, cultural diversity, technology, and strategic plans.
  • DDA has managed and invested resources wisely and established a sound base of finances to operate from. This has permitted DDA to take on initiatives not funded by government, such as the Family Support program, a proactive and preventative service that is highly valued by families and individuals in the community.
  • DDA is active in provincial initiatives, making it a valued and influential player in discussions, strategic planning, and policy development at the provincial level. This is an excellent example of how the organization pursues advocacy initiatives on a larger scale.
  • By maximizing/organizing services, DDA has reduced and even eliminated wait lists as it affords different types of services to allow families to have help soon after applications are received in the form of group services, consultation, and trainings in addition to the most desired one-to-one service provision.
  • Families express high satisfaction with the services as well as the dedication of staff members and contract providers they have encountered. This is, in part, also due to the longevity of staff members throughout the organization, the multiple choices offered to families, and the ease with which families can move from programs as their family members age out of the various programs. The idea of a “tweenies” program to serve children who reach the age of three has been a great way to have children continue to receive services from infant programs to preschool programs.
  • The use of integrative and innovative technology allows the organization the opportunity to identify the unique preferences of individuals and match those needs with a response that promotes participation in daily services almost seamlessly.

The 2015 Accreditation survey results speak both to the quality of the services provided, and the dedication and abilities of employees and volunteers in providing those services.

The CARF Survey team summarized the survey outcome as follows:

On balance, DDA provides highly valued services and supports to individuals and families in the greater Vancouver area. For decades, DDA has evolved to be a responsive and innovative organization and is considered a leader in the developmental services sector locally and throughout the province. The leadership at DDA is highly respected and has been instrumental in developing and nurturing a culture of commitment and excellence based on the core values of the organization. Staff members at all levels are dedicated and creative, continually designing and implementing individually tailored supports that respond to the unique needs of individuals and families. The organization is especially strong in the area of rights and advocacy, going above and beyond all expectations to create innovative ways to promote inclusion and citizenship, all with the direct involvement of the primary stakeholders of the organization. The overall financial health of DDA has put it in the envious position of being able to develop initiatives and supports that benefit individuals, families, and the community in general. This is an impressive achievement within a constrained economic environment. The organization’s commitment to continuous quality improvement means that it will not simply rest on past accomplishments but will likely continue to pioneer new ideas, remaining current with the needs of the community it serves. This is an organization that has an impressive history of service, advocacy, and community development that remains determined to achieve further levels of excellence.”

Click here to view the 2015 DDA Survey Report from CARF

The Association’s next accreditation survey will take place in the spring of 2018.

The work that leads to continuous improvement and enables future successful accreditation is ongoing. The contributions of everyone at DDA, volunteers, employees, Board Members and community partners, in support of the mission of the Association, enable us to achieve such outstanding accreditation results.

Our Accredited Programs

Learn more about our programs accredited by CARF.

DDA’s CARF Report

View the latest full CARF survey report for DDA’s services and programs.

Our Latest Survey Results

Download our survey results from our clients and families.