Lisa is a certified lifeguard and swim instructor at the YMCA in Fairfield, Connecticut. After much success as a competitive swimmer in the Special Olympics, Lisa transferred her skills to a career at the YMCA. As a lifeguard, Lisa tests chemical levels in the water and looks after swimmers by surveying the pool during swim sessions. As a swim instructor, Lisa prepares for class sessions and teaches group swim lessons. With support from her supervisor, coworkers, and family, Lisa earned and maintains the necessary certifications for her job, successfully carries out her work responsibilities, and has earned the reputation of being a responsible, detail-oriented, and dedicated employee at the YMCA.
Reid was one of the first people hired through the Work Independence Network (WIN)* pilot project. Reid has great social skills but limited communication skills. Prior to becoming involved with the pilot project in 2004, he was deemed "unemployable" by administrators in the school and vocational rehabilitation systems. Thanks to his own initiative and to some creative thinking by his job developer and job coach, Reid now works approximately 16 hours per week at the Rehabilitation Clinic at Harrison Hospital, where he cleans equipment, maintains the pool, play, and therapy areas, and stocks linens.
Allison has worked at Crate & Barrel, a retail store selling furniture and houseware, for over six years. Allison’s employment support staff has used a variety of strategies to foster a good relationship with Allison and her employer over the years. The match between Allison and Crate & Barrel was effective due to positive communication and combined supports from both co-workers and her supported employment staff.
Carrie works in the kitchen of a small private school. This is her first job in the community. She enjoys reciprocal, caring relationships with several of her coworkers. The natural support of her colleagues has enabled her to be successful at her job and form friendships that extend beyond the workday.
Although Michael has held several jobs in the past, he has struggled with retaining them. This success story illustrates how identifying shortcomings in previous on-the-job supports can lead to an improved understanding of current needs. Michael's needs were met by supplementing his job coach with supports from his co-workers and supervisor. Michael now works four days per week as an assistant for the maintenance team at a local rest home. He performs janitorial duties and assists with small maintenance jobs such as plumbing, repairs, and landscaping.