We have recently been the recipient of some excellent news…

The Occupational Development Center has partnered with Kinsey’s Outdoors in Mount Joy, PA to provide a new service called, Small Group Employment.

Three days a week, the ODC will be sending a crew of program participants and a program supervisor to work in their warehouse alongside the other employees at Kinsey’s Outdoors.  The program participants will be performing a variety of tasks such as: making boxes, packaging, assembly, and quality assurance.

Their starting rate of pay will be… Minimum Wage!

Occupational Development Center at Kinsey's

Now, while that may not sound like a big deal to most people, it is a VERY big deal to our program participants.

Historically, the ODC has provided the bulk of our work opportunities to individuals with disabilities at our facility at 640 Martha Avenue in Lancaster, PA.  Most of the jobs that we complete “in house” for various businesses are performed at what is called, “Piece Rate.”  The idea behind piece rate work is that it allows different individuals having varying skill levels and abilities to “succeed at their own pace.”

Many of our community based jobs were either volunteer opportunities or transitional work meant to give people work experience and to develop the social skill required to be successful in achieving competitive employment.

The Occupational Development Center has always and will always try to develop the skills of our individuals to achieve their maximum levels of independence and inclusion in their community.  Many of our program participants have absolutely achieved the skill level to be successful in competitive and integrated work settings but just require the opportunity to show what they can do.

We applaud Kinsey’s Outdoors for recognizing the ability of our individuals and providing the opportunity for them to succeed.  We are confident that this pairing will be the first of many successful relationships between the ODC and local businesses, but we wanted to take the opportunity to say,

Thank you Kinsey’s Outdoors.

Thank you for providing a life changing opportunity to our program participants.

Thank you for participating in the cultural shift that will allow individuals with developmental disabilities not only to get out “in the community,” but to be “OF the community.”

A part of everyone’s everyday lives.  As it should be.