2016-03-25 – Vocational Rehabilitation shares story of program that helped man with intellectual disability find perfect job.

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Joey Cunio wanted to work, but he couldn’t find the right job – a problem all too common for those with intellectual disabilities. According to the Agency for Persons with Disabilities, over 50,000 Floridians have intellectual or developmental disabilities. Though many are capable of holding down jobs, only 18% of Floridians with disabilities aged 16 and over are employed.

“My counselor made a difference for me by being patient and suggesting that I try the Discovery program…”

So when Joey needed help finding work, he went to Vocational Rehabilitation (VR), a state agency that helps people with disabilities get or keep jobs. Joey was assigned a VR Counselor, Timothy Seaman, who helped him create a career plan, but he got off to a slow start. “It wasn’t going very well for a long time because Joey doesn’t like anybody getting into his business,” says Timothy. “Anytime we tried to place him in a job, he’d want to quit. I was at the point where we couldn’t do anything else, so we tried the Discovery program. It made it very easy to find employment for him.”

In the Discovery program, trained employment specialists spend extra time with VR customers, working with them to determine their interests and observing them to see how they handle situations in their daily lives. The individualized attention was just what Joey needed. “The Discovery program really catered…

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