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American Therapeutic Recreation Association ATRA
"The American Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA) is the largest national membership organization representing the interests and needs of recreational therapists. Recreational therapists are healthcare providers who use recreational therapy interventions for improved functioning of individuals with illness or disabling conditions. ATRA, was incorporated in the District of Columbia in 1984 as a non-profit, grassroots organization in response to growing concern about the dramatic changes in the healthcare industry. As a result of this response, ATRA has grown from a membership of 60 individuals in June 1984 to 2,100 in 2009.
ATRA was formed in response to recreational therapistís demand for an independent organization solely representing the needs and issues of the therapeutic recreation profession within the healthcare delivery system. Since the inception of ATRA, the organization has emphasized the importance of grassroots involvement with the membership. As such, the formation of chapter affiliates is a very important feature within the association, relying on the individual chapter affiliates to provide constant feedback and information on the issues facing the profession to the board of directors. In addition, the organization places significant emphasis on consumer input into the professional direction of the organization and relies on a consumer advisory network for information related to the consumer's perspective.