The Impact of Generosity
Thank you so much for being a part of the OE family. Your time and generosity are changing our lives.
Mickey enjoys learning new skills in OE’s Quest program. This activity builds manual dexterity. Recognizing colors, shapes, and patterns are critical thinking skills used in problem solving. Clients like Mickey in OE’s curriculum-based day programs learn things like this each day that lead to independence and self-sufficiency.
Remember the pride you felt the first time you read a book on your own? Mat is utilizing OE’s Assistive Technology to learn new skills. Recognizing letters, sounding out words, and learning new vocabulary are all critical parts of communication. Every day, Amazing ‘firsts’ happen at Opportunity Enterprises.
Austin entered JobSource eager to get his first job in the community. During job development Austin did everything that was asked of him. Then the call came, he got the interview. Shortly after, Austin WAS HIRED!!
He was very nervous, but Austin put forth every effort to do his very best, every shift. Austin quickly became part of the team. He has learned skills such as teamwork, responsibility, money management and has become motivated to become more independent and is now working towards obtaining a driver’s license.
Jennifer has shown many improvements over the last year. She has been working very hard with the staff to learn appropriate communication skills, especially how to tell people when she is finished with an activity.
Jennifer is happier now that she is able to interact with activities and her peers as independently as possible. The staff knows that sitting at an activity is often not an easy task for Jennifer and seeing how hard Jennifer is working makes them so proud.
Linda, or “Lulu”, works hard at everything she does each day and often exceeds expectations. To say that Lulu is determined is an understatement. Despite having a limited range of motion in her arms, Lulu will decline offers of assistance and wheel herself across the room to get where she wants to go even though it is physically demanding. In her free time, she loves to color and even though her hand will sometimes start to cramp from so much use, she keeps working to make things that are extra special for her friends and staff. The patience she demonstrates with herself and with others, her kindness, and her sense of humor in the face of adversity is humbling and inspiring.
Nancy has attended OE for almost 30 years. For many of those years, Nancy was working in Outsource 5 days a week. When the new Quest program opened, Nancy’s family knew right away that was where Nancy needed to be. It was almost immediately after moving to the Quest program that Nancy’s staff started receiving updates that Nancy was beginning to accomplish her goals, one of which was to read loud enough for her peers to hear her in her group. Nancy’s improvements haven’t stopped since, the staff is seeing Nancy interact in ways they didn’t know if they ever would. Nancy is slowly coming out of her shell and looks forward to each and every activity at Quest. Nancy now enjoys talking about her day at Quest with her family around the dinner table every evening.
Andrew has been working at the Family Express Bakery and Distribution Center since 2005. He has since grown into a confident person and member of his team.
Andrew has taken it upon himself to learn many new tasks and roles and has had the opportunity to try different positions within the company. His assertive approach to learning has earned him many valuable skills such as teamwork, responsibility, and independence.
“Andrew’s passion for life is reflected in his work here,” says one of Andrew’s co-workers. “He serves as an inspiration to me because he doesn’t accept the status quo. throughout his time here, Andrew has helped with training new employees. He has an incredible attitude.”
Working at Family Express has had a huge impact on Andrew’s life. He speaks regularly about how far he has reached and how grateful he is. He truly feels that he has grown by leaps and bounds, both professionally and personally.
“I met my wife Jill while working here in the Bakery,” Andrew shares cheerfully. “When we purchased our home, I realized that I am living my dream. I am so happy to be here.”
Jeff has grown incredibly since he began his journey at OE more than five years ago. “At first, it was challenging,” says Valerie, one of Jeff’s supporting staff. “But over the past year, he has achieved his objectives, often experiencing great success, developing his sense of achievement and confidence. He grew to trust me and loves working on new goals. One of Jeff’s amazing successes has been to achieve personal care independence. He’s even reached his goal of hand washing and toothbrushing on his own.”
Lunchtime, making music, and working on new ways to effectively communicate are just some of Jeff’s favorite things to do at DLS. By taking on new challenges, he has developed the skills to interact with his peers and staff when in prior years he would not allow for anyone to approach him. Now, Jeff enjoys attention and socializing. He lets his family and staff hold his hand, hug him, and he even plays interactive games with staff in front of the mirror. His smile has grown.
Because of you, Jeff has grown to such success that he can communicate his basic needs to his family and staff. This has been critical to Jeff’s well-being and has opened a world of opportunities for his friends and family to understand his wants and needs. This has been life-changing
Shane first began his journey at OE through OE’s Outsource program. He was met with many challenges and he wasn’t sure it was the right fit, so Shane and his mom were encouraged to tour OE’s Lakeside facility. They loved the program and Shane has been a part of Enriching Possibilities (EP) for more than year now. He has been flourishing ever since.
“Shane has blossomed since joining Enriching Possibilities,” says Camille Hawkins, Director of Enriching Possibilities. “He has gained independence and has developed a sense of confidence in everything he does. And he’s a great dancer!”
Shane has absolutely exceeded at his goals. He participates in all group activities and in opportunities for individual instruction. He gladly takes initiative to help his supervisor and accepts change and transition more easily.
Shane lives at home with his mother, who works Monday through Friday. Now that Shane attends EP five days a week and is learning, growing, and loving it here, his mom doesn’t have to worry about what to do when she is working. “I’ve noticed a positive difference at home since Shane started attending EP,” Shane’s mom shares. “I am so incredibly proud to see Shane working so hard to build his character, talents, and skills.”
Over the past year, Jeffery has made huge strides in reaching his goals.
He has developed close bonds with his staff and has worked hard to communicate his wants and needs. He likes being with his group and participates in all the different activities offered. “Jeffery is especially good at sports and likes playing catch,” says Courtney, a DSP at Renewed Horizons. “He loves playing cards and during his free time can most often be found relaxing in a recliner near his friends.”
Jeffery truly enjoys the time he spends at Renewed Horizons. He loves to meet new people and brings out the smiles in those around him.
Lee Harris has been an employee at OE for 38 years! She is a dependable worker who excels at her job and loves coming to OE. When working at OE, Lee’s main job is assembling pieces for Smith Medical, where she has worked since the start of that program. When new people start working in the Smith Medical Room, Lee volunteers to help them learn the new position. Without being asked, Lee has volunteered to be in charge of inventory and keeps her space extremely clean. She takes this very seriously since these rooms are used to prepare medical equipment.
“I love going for short walks and I just began trying art classes,” shares Lee. “My favorite art project is painting ceramics because I like to see each piece when it’s complete. I’m so proud of my accomplishment.”
For Lee, OE has been like a second home. “OE has been a big part of my life,” she shares. “I started working here when I was 19 years old. My friends and staff have supported me through many life events—I am a cancer survivor, for one thing. I even met my boyfriend at OE!”
Lee is the perfect example of how OE is a great place to grow. She has flourished during her time at OE and finds meaning and purpose in her job.
Lori has blossomed since joining the Quest Program. There has been an amazing metamorphosis in her communication and social skills, her level of independence, and her overall demeanor. She has gone from being quiet and almost non-verbal to becoming an enthusiastic social butterfly.
Lori is full of smiles and laughter and thoroughly enjoys herself each and every day. She has learned the names of every client at Quest (over 50!) and greets each one every morning. Her ability to speak has improved greatly. She has frequent conversations with both clients and staff—something virtually unheard of less than a year ago.
When she gets home, Lori is excited to talk about her day. She shares with her residential staff all about the day’s activities and talks about her new friends as well. Her independence and willingness to pitch in and help out have increased at home too. She is excited to get up each day. At Quest, every day is a good day for Lori. Her smile is radiant, and her laughter is infectious. One simply can’t be in a bad mood when Lori is around!