The ARC Mercer History In 1950, a group of 12 parents met in a Trenton, New Jersey home to talk about a common concern, which was how they could provide their children with developmental disabilities with a quality education, enjoyable recreational activities, and a well-rounded social life. In other words, the basic things all parents want for their children. But these parents also wanted something else—they needed a way to support and empower themselves and their children as they faced the special challenges of raising a child with a developmental disability. As a result, they banded together and began what would become The Arc Mercer. From its humble beginnings involving a living room meeting, The Arc Mercer has grown to serve more than 1,000 children and adults with developmental disabilities through a myriad of programs and services that empower them through opportunities for personal development, job training, fun and recreation, and independent living.