Our History

A Legacy of Care

The National Center on Institutions and Alternatives (NCIA) was founded by Dr. Jerome G. Miller and Herbert J. Hoelter, two of the country’s leading experts in developing alternatives to institutionalization and incarceration. 

Since 1977, we have worked to better the lives of persons with disabilities as well as returning citizens and SNAP recipients involved with  human service and correctional systems. We use an individualized, person-centric support model that prizes customized care, concern, and treatment.

NCIA programs are far-reaching, helping persons with disabilities as well as those involved in the criminal justice system. We partner with community groups, businesses, government organizations, and families to provide fulfilling opportunities for our recipients.

Our mission is to help create a society in which all persons who come into contact with human service or correctional systems are provided with the care necessary to live their lives to the best of their abilities and the critical social acceptance to achieve this. To this end, NCIA continually develops high quality programs and professional services that advocate timely intervention and unconditional care.

Through an innovative approach to service and care, we connect individuals with the community to benefit everyone. All are welcome, and we encourage all without judgment to build their best lives according to their unique goals. 

We take pride in helping individuals achieve productive, socially acceptable lives. NCIA’s family of services helps individuals discover a world of possibilities as unique as they are—where they can expand their experiences, exceed their potential, and excel in their lives.



We cannot help adults with disabilities expand their experiences, youth with disabilities exceed their potential, and returning citizens and SNAP recipients excel in their lives without you! Your donations help fund the critical programs that enable participants to flourish, embrace their independence, and build an even stronger community.

We are grateful for the support that our NCIA family has provided over the years, and we look forward to continuing to provide these life-bettering—and life-changing services—to our recipients.

We welcome your donations and thank you sincerely for your heartfelt help and support. Your gifts make a real difference in real lives every time. Thank you.