This time of year, parents worry about teens building job skills and work ethic through summer gigs, but meaningful employment means the world to adults with disabilities and their families, too. One local employment expert sheds light on the power of meaningful work – for the employer and the employee
Contributor: Avi Glickman M.Ed, BCBA, Director of Adult Employment Services at Bancroft
Monday, July 18, 2016
We’re officially in midsummer, which means by now, you’ve likely witnessed area teens and young adults folding clothes at the mall, stocking shelves at the grocery store and serving ice cream at your favorite local spot. Summer is prime time for young people to explore job opportunities and discover roles and responsibilities they love, and will likely remember throughout their careers.
And like young people, adults with autism, and other intellectual and developmental disabilities thrive when they have the opportunity to strengthen social acuity and develop new job skills for their futures. In fact, the right job can make a world of difference for these adults, but unfortunately, this population is often overlooked for employment.
As Director of Adult Employment Services at the state’s largest provider of services for individuals with autism and other intellectual disabilities, I’ve witnessed the power of appropriate, meaningful employment in the lives of so many adults and their families. The positive changes for these individuals may seem obvious – immense confidence, social growth, a bright future and, for many, the empowerment the ability to earn income for the first time can bring, among many, many other improvements in quality of life.
But business owners and those with the ability to employ this population may not realize the terrific benefits to their companies’ bottom lines, too. We work hand-in-hand with a few amazing local enterprises – including Wawa, Whole Foods, Target and more recently, even Comcast – to place employees in the right jobs that are mutually beneficial, and besides retaining a terrific, loyal employee, these companies also enjoy:
- Various tax incentives, where applicable, for providing employment for these individuals. We work closely with you to enable your business to qualify for these benefits where available.
- An untapped employee pool. Nearly five million adults in the U.S. have an intellectual or developmental disability.
- A workforce that’s capable, hardworking and reliable. Employers and community partners describe Bancroft staff as punctual, dedicated, productive and loyal – all terrific qualities of any employee!
So this summer, as you enjoy time with your families at the pool or on the boardwalk, remember the power of meaningful employment for those teens and young adults just beginning their careers. These summer job skills are keystones to building a successful future, and for the population we serve at Bancroft, these small daily successes can truly be life-changing.
At Bancroft, adults with autism and other intellectual and developmental disabilities have access to a vocational continuum where they can build job skills while discovering their passion for work. Opportunities for ongoing education include job skills acquisition, supported employment, and transitional employment.
If you have questions or would like to offer employment to Bancroft’s dedicated individuals, please contact Bancroft Director of Adult Employment Services Avi Glickman at 856-874-8332 or firstname.lastname@example.org.