Community Employment in Fayette County
Fayette County has found broad support for community employment. The efforts to integrate the people served into community employment have been very well-received and successful due to the “buy-in” by employers. One successful individual is an employee who has been hired for more than two years at Lowe’s. He has had opportunities to grow professionally both in technical and interpersonal skills. Management has been proactive in providing natural supports, and he is currently being considered for advancement. Fayette County has diligently worked to create several policies and processes to support community employment.
Through the ACE program, people are able to rotate between over 15 different sites. With the wide variety of supported employment experiences, individuals meet with their support team to express what kind of work they are interested in and are placed in positions that best fit their wants and needs. Some of the community employment positions in Fayette County include food service, retail, and maintenance. Other programs in Fayette County include an Employment First collaboration with Pickaway County as part of the Local Leaders grant. This has allowed for the counties to explore demographics, size, industries, job opportunities and perceived barriers to employment. The teams have created comprehensive action plans with this information. One of the major takeaways has been transportation and they are actively pursuing solutions, such as developing trainings for different transportation services about how to best serve people with disabilities. With this training, there would be multiple transportation options for the individuals they serve.
Another partnership opportunity has been through the Business Advisory Team which is comprised of local businesses. This group discusses what job skills businesses are looking for and builds awareness throughout the community. It has also been particularly helpful for job developers to share resources through the Job Opportunities Group where providers discuss job leads, successes, and potential barriers.
The newest partnership is with Ohio Means Jobs at Southern State Community College. This program will consist of a job club, which will meet every Tuesday at SSCC. Topics which are to be discussed are team work, professionalism, work ethics, and attitude. At the conclusion, more trainings will be held for knowledge of how to stock, scan and run a cash register along with basic money skills.
So much is being accomplished in Fayette County to help prepare the people we serve to realize their dreams, to find the job that best suits them and to actively contribute to their community.
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