Missouri Program To Create Jobs For Youth With Disabilities

4 years 3 weeks 18 hours ago January 30, 2013 Jan 30, 2013 Wednesday, January 30 2013 Wednesday, January 30, 2013 4:25:00 PM CST in News
By: Gina Cook
Embed Code Copied

COLUMBIA - Imagine only 20 percent of the population is employed and your chances of obtaining a job are slim because of something you cannot change. Advocates say that is the reality for people with disabilities, but a new state program is trying to change those odds.

The Show-Me-Careers project launched this month to give eight pilot communities in Missouri the ability to create more job opportunities for youth with disabilities, ages 16-30. Columbia is one of the communities receiving the grant and it is getting the maximum amount of $65,000.

John Savage, the director of Alternative Community Training, is the chair of Columbia's board for the project. He said a major task for the program is to build partnerships with businesses that are willing to give people with disabilities a chance.

"We all have a pre-conceived notion of what disability means, including me," Savage said.

Savage said getting business owners to let go of those pre-conceived notions is key. One way the project will reach out to businesses is with the advice of board member Kat Cunningham, local business owner of Moresource, Inc.

Another board memeber, Michael Evans, is blind and said an employer would not hire him because of his disability. Evans, 23, is a student at Moberly Area Community College's Columbia campus and is furthering his education to improve his chances of getting a job.

"With my visual impairment, people believe that there's a lot of things that I can't do," Evans said.

Savage hopes Evans' personal experience as a youth with a disability will lend the board the perspective needed to improve Columbia's opportunities for workers with disabilities.

"We as service providers kind of get our head down and think we know what we should be doing and how we should be doing it and to get the perspective of an individual who's going through it from the other side can be very helpful," Savage said.

Once the project establishes business partnerships, it will focus on two other goals: preparing people with disabilities for work and better coordinating Columbia's service systems.

Preparing individuals for work is something many of the service systems already do, but Savage said this program focuses on youth for a reason.

"Helping students and other individuals in that 18 to 30 age range kind of devlop their skills and their knowledge of the job market so that they can better prepare to be apart of that job market is a big part of helping people become successfully employed," Savage said.

Jessica Fulton is one of 150 people with a disability employed through ACT's career services. Fulton is mentally handicapped and said she is thankful for the opportunity to help provide for her parents and siblings.

"I [needed] to get out of the house and not sit at the house so long," Jessica said. "This job pays the bills and puts food in the house ... and that's why this job was so important."

Other service systems on the board for the project include:

Boone County Family Resources
Vocational Rehabilitation
Services for Independent Living
Columbia Public Schools

The board wants to add at least 57 more entry-level job opportunities like Jessica's over the span of the next three years. Savage said job opportunities for people with disabilities should continue to grow after the grant ends in three years because business partnerships will be well establshed.

 

More News

Grid
List
JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — A Joplin man alleged that police used excessive force in his 2015 arrest. The Joplin... More >>
35 minutes ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 9:53:00 AM CST in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Authorities say two teenage cousins have died in a Kansas City crash. The Kansas City... More >>
1 hour ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 8:43:52 AM CST in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A 14-year-old boy is recovering from non-life-threatening injuries after being hit by a train in suburban... More >>
2 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 7:33:09 AM CST in News
UNIVERSITY CITY (AP) — Authorities in Missouri are investigating after dozens of headstones were damaged at a Jewish cemetery near... More >>
5 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 4:39:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - As the warm weather approaches, the number of unwanted litters increases, putting a burden on local shelters. ... More >>
7 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 2:30:00 AM CST in Top Stories
HENNEPIN COUNTY, Minnesota - A Missouri construction worker, David Earl Hyde, 38, of Fulton died while on the job in... More >>
12 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 9:54:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Regional Airport is about to get the renovation its been hoping for. The small airport currently flies... More >>
14 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 7:37:00 PM CST in News
ST. CHARLES (AP) — Agents from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are joining the investigation into... More >>
15 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 7:06:00 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City City Council will vote Monday evening on the Truman Hotel Urban Renewal Plan. ... More >>
15 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 6:42:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Missouri's new first lady, Dr. Sheena Chestnut Greitens, said she is committed to keeping politics separate from her... More >>
15 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 6:30:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - In the past two decades, the number of fatal opioid overdoses has skyrocketed, and the medical community has... More >>
18 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 3:42:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA – As unusually warm weather brings a feeling of early spring across Missouri, it also speeds up the lawn... More >>
19 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 3:27:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - The mayor's medical tourism task force has finalized its recommendations on how to make Columbia a medical hub... More >>
19 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 2:35:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Stress may seem like one of those things that we all talk about being under from time to... More >>
20 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 1:47:00 PM CST in News
ST. JOSEPH (AP) — Th e Missouri S tate Highway Patrol says a 27-year-old man was died after a police... More >>
21 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 1:13:43 PM CST in News
PLATTE CITY (AP) — A truck driver from Springfield was sentenced to four years in prison after pleading guilty in... More >>
21 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 12:48:59 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - MU Police identified a man suspected of kissing one unwilling female and trying to hug several others. There... More >>
23 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 11:08:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia City Council will discuss a proposed ordinance change Monday night that would affect the way trash... More >>
23 hours ago February 20, 2017 Feb 20, 2017 Monday, February 20 2017 Monday, February 20, 2017 10:35:00 AM CST in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 59°
11am 63°
12pm 65°
1pm 67°
2pm 69°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00a
Today
11:00a
Rachael Ray
12:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Noon
10:00a
Jerry Springer
11:00a
Jerry Springer
12:00p
Jerry Springer

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Wall
8:00p
This Is Us
9:00p
Chicago Fire
7:00p
The Flash
8:00p
DC's Legends of Tomorrow
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld