Is your job important to you? Does it add meaning to your life? Do you look forward to going to work? Or do you dread it?
Employment is different things to different people. Some folks have a career that gives them purpose. Others have a skill or trade they have mastered. And for some, a job is nothing more than a paycheck, a means of keeping a roof over their heads.
Chances are good that your current job is not your first. Most people go through several before finding work that suits them, and if you lost your current position, you would most likely find the next one without too much effort.
But for men and women with developmental disabilities, landing that first job can be extremely difficult. And if they do have a job but lose it, statistics show it is much harder for them to find another one.
That is because the majority of businesses will not hire a person with specific challenges.
· Most will not even consider employing someone who has multiple seizures each day.
· Many are unwilling to make the necessary adjustments so that an individual who becomes easily fatigued can continue to work safely.
· Very few will hire someone who has behavioral issues that could, from time to time, affect their performance in the workplace.
However, we are the exception. The primary mission of The Meadows is to provide employment for men and women with developmental disabilities who are frequently denied the opportunity to have a job based on factors that are beyond their control.
When someone wants to work but they are not given the chance, we believe it is wrong. That’s why we are pleased to hire adults who have so much to offer but who have been unfairly rejected by others.
Each time a person with an intellectual challenge joins our organization, a new world opens up for them. That is because The Meadows is a place of belonging. It’s a place where they learn to work as part of a team and where they accomplish a variety of tasks at their own pace, without pressure and forced expectations. But most importantly, it’s a place where they are accepted for who they are.
For an individual who requires a vocational setting that meets their specific needs, it can be life-changing to go to work with us. Typically, it is a positive experience for their entire family because parents and siblings have often made considerable sacrifices to help their loved ones reach that milestone.
Unfortunately, many businesses have a high turnover of employees, and it is a constant struggle to find new people and train them. But that is not an issue for our company. The men and women who come to work with us are happy to be here, which is why some individuals have stayed for decades.
We have found that when people with intellectual challenges are employed, they display a tremendous work ethic as they consistently attempt to do their job to the best of their ability. They take pride in their accomplishments, and they are always striving to improve and achieve more.
Over the last 40 years, The Meadows has been privileged to make a significant difference in the lives of adults with developmental disabilities. The men and women who have passed through our doors have been remarkable in their dedication and commitment. They have proven the skeptics wrong by showing that, without a doubt, people with intellectual challenges can be a vital part of the workforce.
In the future, we will continue to focus on hiring individuals who deserve the opportunity to find meaningful long-term employment because we believe that every person has the right to work.