The Mission

The Opportunity Knocks (OK) mission is dedicated to providing opportunities and resources for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities (DD) so they may pursue their educational, occupational and social interests.

The Vision

We envision a community where individuals with DD have an active and supported presence. Our socially interactive programming places consistent emphasis on the value of self-advocacy and community. The goal is to provide opportunities for self-enrichment in the life of the Warrior, in turn, giving the Warrior an Opportunity to enrich the fabric of their community.

Our Guiding Principle

Warriors have unique and exceptional abilities that diversify and strengthen their communities. OK will be guided by the interests of the individual. Our Warriors will be equal architects and their self-advocacy will serve as the foundation of all program development.



Morning Opps YELLOWMorning Opps

Morning Opportunities is a new Opportunity Knock’s program, launched in 2012, providing activities for the students in Oak Park River Forest High School’s TEAM (Transitional Education with Access to the Mainstream) classrooms. ‘Morning Opps,’ as we like to call it, is offered on late arrival Wednesdays throughout the school year when the OPRF faculty and staff participate in professional development training.

Life Shop GREENLife Shop

Presently The Life Shop is in the midst of the pilot phase and is limited to serving 10 participants. In the fall of 2014, we hope to expand the program, serving more individuals. The Life Shop strives to maximize opportunities for the older than 22 adult with developmental disabilities. The pilot is focused on the Warrior in three phases: health & wellness, improving life skills and community integration.

After Opps BLUE copyAfter Opps

After Opps is an after school/after work program that offers social and recreational activities. Opportunity Knocks holds 4 After Opps program seasons (winter, spring, summer and fall) consisting of one 5-week and one following 4-week session. Opportunity Knocks aims to stimulate the interest of various leisurely activities, participation within the community, and the continued engagement of these activities outside of programs.

Featured at The Knocks

Summer 2014 Registration BrochureAfter Opps Summer Session 1 Registration Now Available

What does After Opps have in store for the first summer session? Pool Party, Fabric Fun, gardening, Ettiquette 101, Bikes and Trikes, A Bug’a Life, Backyard Games License to Grill and Photography have all made it on the schedule of activities. Download the Summer 2014 After Opps Registration Brochure or register online.

IMG_0288The Life Shop Blog

Follow the progress of the Life Shop, Opportunity Knock’s new day program in its pilot phase. From Warrior-planned outings and volunteering in the community to health and wellness activities—you’ll find it here!


Warrior Spotlight: Maddy Gancer

Each session, we will put the spotlight on one of our Warriors who has best exemplified the Warrior 5-Point Code. The five point code is the set of expectations that we have for our Warriors throughout our programs. Those five points are safety, leadership, communication, teamwork, and respect. Click to learn more about what an incredible role model Maddy is!

DSC_0103The Weekly Warrior Blog

This winter session launched the second coming of Warrior blogging. Visit The Weekly Warrior blog to learn about fun happenings at After Opps and about what the Warriors find interesting or important. While given the opportunity to flex their creative muscles, the Warriors are also able to practice planning, organization, editing, internet safety and other essential computing skills. Comments welcomed!


Letter from the Director: Health & Wellness

Health and Wellness Director, Jeni Pierce, and Executive Director, Mike Carmody, report about the different ways Opportunity Knocks participants in all three programs are working to improve their health and well being! This past year marked the addition of at least two new fitness-based events including the Warrior Dash obstacle course and the Chilly Dash run that preceded the Chili Cook Off fundraiser.

Screen Shot 2014-03-25 at 4.01.43 PMAnnual Report: 2012 – 2013

“Every year seems to move just a bit faster than the last here at The Knocks.” Click to read about the achievements from the 2012 – 2013 year including Peer-Led activities and Community Opportunities projects offered through After Opps, the progress of Morning Opps and the launch of the Life Shop. You may also find OK’s financial summary, a list of donors and partnerships as well.

Facebook Feed

The OK staff and the Life Shop Warriors threw a surprise baby shower for Kim, our program director of Life Shop! Each Warrior decorated their own bib for the new baby as well as made cards to wish her all the best with her newest addition to her family! Good luck and congratulations to Kim and her family! #LifeShop #newbaby #OKwarriors ... See MoreSee Less

18 hours ago

Nancy Deuchler, Natalie Draper and 23 others like this

Kim Meares SurprenantThanks everyone! We are excited to meet our little guy tomorrow.6   ·  17 hours ago

Laura VoigtSo awesome!17 hours ago

Janet Arey WrightMax is very excited for you and your family!17 hours ago

Carolynn PowersSuch a fun day! GL tomorrow, Kim!! We will all be thinking of you! Xoxo13 hours ago

Comment on Facebook

During After Ops some of the Warriors continued working on their fabric fun projects and Karissa made an awesome Kermit the Frog while another group visited the Carleton Of Oak Park and experienced the set up for a black-tie affair for the Etiquette 101 program. #fabricfun #etiquette #okwarriors ... See MoreSee Less

2 days ago

MG Maloney, Nancy Deuchler and 23 others like this

Kim Meares SurprenantAwesome!!!!1 day ago

Comment on Facebook

The Photography group walked around Oak Park this week and made a special stop by our friends at greenline wheels! The bottom left picture shows some of the Warriors snapping some cool shots. The bottom right picture is taken by Patrick M. Great job photographers! #okwarriors #greenlinewheels ... See MoreSee Less

2 days ago

Anna Cavallo, Diane Diekman Mitchell and 23 others like this

David PoppeiLooking good!2   ·  2 days ago

Comment on Facebook

We are very proud to announce that there has been a changing of the guard atop the OK Board of Directors! Former Chairman & President, Phil Carmody has passed the torch to our previous VP, Joe Milburn. Phil will now serve solely as the President of OK. Joe was as excited to step in as Phil was to step aside. Congrats and big thanks to Joe! He is an original BOD member and a tremendous contributor. We would not be where we are without Joe! ... See MoreSee Less

6 days ago

Angela Kessler, Jarvis Hart and 23 others like this

Courtney VillariYay Joe Milburn!!!!1   ·  6 days ago

Bridget NortonOn the majority of boards, Presidents and Chairmans are the same sole function so what's the difference here? Change is always a good thing though.1   ·  6 days ago

Comment on Facebook

Had a great time at the ole ballpark on a beautiful afternoon for some White Sox baseball! Big thanks to our main man, the Godfather for donating the tickets and allowing us a chance to treat the Warriors to a great day. #gogowhitesox #gogowarriors ... See MoreSee Less

7 days ago

Elizabeth Schroeder, Kristyn Mary and 23 others like this

David PoppeiGo Cubs! :)7 days ago

Christina Birkentallyou all look like you had a blast!6 days ago

Barbara SmithWhat a wonderful day! Michael is still buzzed about it!5 days ago

Comment on Facebook

Opportunity Knocks updated their cover photo. ... See MoreSee Less

1 week ago

This is how Warriors get down in the summer! #bikesandtrikes #poolparty ... See MoreSee Less

2 weeks ago

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