Quantcast

Project Hire pairs workers with disabilities with employers - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Project Hire pairs workers with disabilities with employers

Posted: Updated:
SHELBURNE, Vt. -

Finding a full time job is tough and if you're living with a disability it's even more difficult. But WCAX News found there's help out there and they are always looking for new clients.

David Frye has lots of experience in food services, but five years ago he needed help finding a new job.

"I had difficulties in the last job that I had. My mother decided to look into Howard services and hooked me up with Project HIRE," he said. Frye now works as a kitchen assistant.

Project HIRE is a program that got its start as our society made a shift to a more community-centered focus for people with mental disabilities.

"Supported employment really came out in the early 80s by offering opportunities to help people connect with employers and get hired outside of sheltered employment into traditional jobs," said Project HIRE Program Manager Karen Hussey. 

Sheltered workshops were places where people with disabilities were warehoused and given simple tasks. And until 2002, they were one of the only work options for people with disabilities. However, Project HIRE set out to change that.

The national unemployment average in the United states stands at 6.7 percent. But the unemployement rate among people with all types of disabilities is much higher, at 12.8 percent.

"Sometimes it's hard for a person with disabilities to write up a resume," said Frye.

"On one side we're helping individuals with disabilities discover their interests and talents. So, when we partner with businesses and know what their needs are we can make the right match," said Hussey.

Frye's match was in the kitchen at Wake Robin Retirement Community.

"The expectations with Dave and myself were pretty much mapped out so there was an ability for us to throw Dave right into the mix of it," said Tim Pratt, the executive chef at Wake Robin. 

Five years later, Frye has continued to take on more responsibilities - from dishes, to prep work, to actual cooking.

Project HIRE is currently helping 180 people like Frye find work in Vermont at more than 100 different businesses. Most of the positions are part time. Project HIRE is a lot like a temp agency except the relationship doesn't end when they place someone in the job. They continually check to make sure the relationship is working for the new employee and the staff.

"We will go with them on their first day of employment and help them get familiar with the site and become familiar with work culture and connect with their co-workers," Hussey said. 

Frye has some advice for businesses looking to work with the program: "Give people with disabilities a chance. Do not categorize us that we have a disability to do things."

Project HIRE staff say they'll know they've found success when they've worked themselves out of a job.

If you or your business is interested in working with the program, call 802-488-6500.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Sen. Jim Jeffords laid to rest

    Sen. Jim Jeffords laid to rest

    Friday, August 22 2014 8:12 PM EDT2014-08-23 00:12:17 GMT
    Sen. Jim Jeffords was one of Vermont's beloved public servants, with a career that took him from the hills of Shrewsbury to the U.S. Senate. Friday, in his hometown of Rutland, James Jeffords was laid to rest.
    Sen. Jim Jeffords was one of Vermont's beloved public servants, with a career that took him from the hills of Shrewsbury to the U.S. Senate. Friday, in his hometown of Rutland, James Jeffords was laid to rest.
  • Is it safe to move accused killer Elizabeth Teague?

    Is it safe to move accused killer Elizabeth Teague?

    Friday, August 22 2014 7:09 PM EDT2014-08-22 23:09:17 GMT
    The Vt. Dept. of Mental Health says scarce resources are part of the push to relocate alleged workplace shooter Elizabeth Teague to a facility with fewer regulations. Elizabeth Keatinge was at Friday's hearing.
    The Vt. Dept. of Mental Health says scarce resources are part of the push to relocate alleged workplace shooter Elizabeth Teague to a facility with fewer regulations. Elizabeth Keatinge was at Friday's hearing.
  • Police investigate death of 13-year-old in Hardwick

    Police investigate death of 13-year-old in Hardwick

    Friday, August 22 2014 8:10 PM EDT2014-08-23 00:10:40 GMT
    Investigators say a teen was found dead at a home in Hardwick Friday morning.
    Investigators say a teen was found dead at a home in Hardwick Friday morning.
  • Vt. police say all clear in Newport

    Vt. police say all clear in Newport

    Friday, August 22 2014 11:12 AM EDT2014-08-22 15:12:45 GMT
    Police say the threat is over in Newport. Thursday night, police had asked residents to lock their doors and stay inside while authorities searched for a gunman.
    Police say the threat is over in Newport. Thursday night, police had asked residents to lock their doors and stay inside while authorities searched for a gunman.
  • NY police try to ID pharmacy burglar

    NY police try to ID pharmacy burglar

    Friday, August 22 2014 3:39 PM EDT2014-08-22 19:39:59 GMT
    New York State Police hope the public can help identify a burglar.
    New York State Police hope the public can help identify a burglar.
  • Williston police try to ID paint thief

    Williston police try to ID paint thief

    Friday, August 22 2014 4:11 PM EDT2014-08-22 20:11:41 GMT
    Police are investigating an unusual theft at the Wal-Mart in Williston.
    Police are investigating an unusual theft at the Wal-Mart in Williston.
  • Driver of overweight big rig nabbed in Vermont

    Driver of overweight big rig nabbed in Vermont

    Friday, August 22 2014 8:20 PM EDT2014-08-23 00:20:31 GMT
    The Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles says a trucker carrying part of a giant crane to a state bridge job had too much weight on his rig and too much alcohol in his system.
    The Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles says a trucker carrying part of a giant crane to a state bridge job had too much weight on his rig and too much alcohol in his system.
  • Wire fraud convict has until Friday to object

    Wire fraud convict has until Friday to object

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:29 AM EDT2014-08-22 14:29:05 GMT
    A Vermont man convicted of wire fraud for submitting false invoices to a Maine town has reached the end of his allotted time to file objections to a pre-sentencing reporting.
    A Vermont man convicted of wire fraud for submitting false invoices to a Maine town has reached the end of his allotted time to file objections to a pre-sentencing reporting.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WCAX. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.