This week we are especially inspired by LifeStyles, Inc. and the work that three of their programs (Supported Employment, College Living, and Supported Living) are doing in the community. These incredible programs offer members of our community the assistance they need to succeed. They are dedicated to ensuring that every client served feels a sense of accomplishment and success! How inspiring is that?! Check out these three amazing stories of success, confidence, and empowerment:
“Frank* has been a wonderful addition to the supported employment program. He started out working on pre-employment skills to teach him what is expected of an employee and how to find a job. He soon became employed at Walmart as a cart pusher and was recently promoted to the maintenance department. As a cart pusher, Fred always put his very best into his job. He worked in all conditions of weather such as rain and snow, but that never deterred him from showing up to work with a positive attitude. It has been said that Frank is always there to greet customers and co-workers with a smile. Frank was recently elected as employee of the month. His manager says that Frank is great to take initiative on his own. When he first started his job, he had a routine that he would follow to complete all of his tasks. Frank and his job coach would work on his routine until Frank felt that he could accomplish the tasks on his own. If something changed for that day, Fred would sometimes become stressed over the change. However, after Frank became more comfortable with his work and he developed his skills, he would ask his manager if he could add tasks onto his list of things to complete. After adding on tasks, his manager says that the front end of the store has become cleaner and looks more presentable than ever before. Overall, everyone at Fred’s job agrees that Frank is a great member of their team. The support of United Way NWA has made the difference between Frank finding a job and keeping it. He learned how to deal with stresses and who to talk to when he needed assistance. When he changed jobs the job coach was able to go back in and retrain him. Funding from United Way NWA made possible a smoother transition for Frank.”
“AL* is a young woman in the Launch Program. This young woman was incredibly shy when she first began attending classes and in her three years with the program, she has blossomed! She has made numerous friends, has become a mentor of sorts for the freshmen students, and even offers to help her teachers as a Teacher’s Assistant as needed. She enjoys the educational aspect of the program so much that she asked to extend her program from three to four years so that she could take one more year of educational classes before beginning her internship rotations, where she will learn skills to become gainfully employed! She is a joy to be around and we are so proud of the growth we’ve seen in her independent living skills and social skills! Her attendance in the Launch program has helped her to develop into a mature young lady with higher self-esteem and motivation.”
“When John* came to Supported Living, he was a shy, scared young man. He worked in a sheltered workshop, and then went home each evening to hibernate in his apartment. He did not want to participate in activities at all. His weight was becoming a problem due to his poor eating habits and sedentary life. Through long hours of building trust, teaching with patience and taking tiny steps towards his goals and objectives, John has blossomed. He now has a job in the retail industry, plans his meals around healthy food choices, exercises, and has lost 30 lbs. He has conquered his fear of getting lost on public transit and rides the bus regularly to access the community. The first time he put his hand out, gave me a strong handshake and told me ‘thank you’ for my help with something, I could not believe it was the same man.”
*The name of the individuals have been altered as a privacy protection measure.
If you’re interested in helping this program, so that you can assist individuals like this as they work to move forward on the path to success, check out what your gift can do:
$5/week ($260/year) will provide one of the following:
3 individuals with taxi transportation to/from their workplace.
Ten pairs of skid proof shoes for ten clients who would not be able to afford them.
Classroom school supplies (pencils, paper, etc.) for the year.
$10/week ($520/year) will provide one of the following:
Dinner food for 16 individuals for one month.
Transportation to or from work one time per week for a year.
A partial scholarship for a Launch student.
$20/week ($1,040/year) will provide one of the following:
Utility assistance for 16 individuals throughout the year on an as-needed basis.
The opportunity for a client to attend an evening cooking class once per week for one year.
2 hours a week of job coaching for one year.