On April 28th Clint held his grand opening at his office and has already worked with a number of customers.
About three years ago Via staff were contacted by a local transition coordinator and vocational rehabilitation counselor about Clint. Clint has always been motivated to work and for about six years worked weekends as a greeter at a local Kmart, until he was recently laid off because of the slow economy. Via staff were asked to help Clint develop some type of career opportunity that meets his ideal conditions of employment.
Clint uses a chair, a support dog, and needs help with some personal supports. Clint recently graduated from Pen Argyl high school and had over 300 people show up for his graduation party. Because Clint lives in a rural community with limited opportunities for traditional wage employment we thought he would be an excellent candidate for customized employment.
We quickly discovered that Clint has great people skills, has good sales skills, and is pretty comfortable on a computer. We also discovered that because of Clint’s mobility challenges that a home based business might be a preferable option for Clint and his family. Clint and his customized employment coordinator began to research developing a notary public/licensing business that he could run out of his home. We began to research with people from Clint’s community if they would use Clint for Notary services and received a very positive response. Clint and his employment coordinator have developed a highly involved business plan that was reviewed and give positive marks by the Lehigh University Small Business Development Center. Clint has now finished notary training and passed his state notary exam. He has also completed the training for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, passed the exam, and can issue vehicle registrations and titles. Clint will also be highly involved with his own “gorilla marketing,” strategies.
With the assistance of his vocational rehabilitation counselor the business plan was improved and a Plan for Achieving Self Support (PASS) was written to support the start up costs for Clint’s business. With the help of our local Social Security administration Clint has recently applied for a Plan for Achieving Self Support (PASS) to cover his start up costs. Clint is receiving a lot of support provided by grant funding from the Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council Employment Reform Resource Project. Clint is receiving technical support, and job coach funding from the local Office of Vocational Rehabilitation and will receive follow along support funded by the local county office for Intellectual disabilities.
Clint’s highly supportive family has funded necessary home modifications to add an office to their home. Clint is hoping to be OPEN for business by April 15th!!!