In 2006, Algoma University, with funding provided by the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Canadian CED Network, undertook research to identify areas for policy improvement on social enterprises that employ individuals in receipt of the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP). This is one of four case studies developed as an outcome of this initiative.
Like many social enterprises, the Jarrett Value 2 Cooperative grew out of an existing social service agency, Sudbury Developmental Services (SDS). SDS is a transfer payment agency for the Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS) which began in the early 1950s with several parents of developmentally disabled children who were concerned about their education. The parents came together and built a school, which over the years evolved into an association providing day, respite and residential services for developmentally disabled individuals. These services offer life skills and vocational training to individuals who are often marginalized. SDS began providing job skills and readiness training, initially through the Jarrett Resource Centre (JRC) in the 1950s, and more recently through the Jarrett Value Centre (JVC), both of which began as "sheltered workshops".