My heartfelt gratitude and appreciation goes to the extraordinary, remarkable and incomparable staff in Employment Services who have changed my life and given me hope. I became involved with SCIO after an ODSP caseworker told me about their services. Following a second lay off from a long-term position in a prestigious cultural organization, it was difficult to find stable and meaningful employment with numerous physical challenges. Although I was a client of countless social services and not-for-profit organizations related to employment, it wasn’t until I became affiliated with SCIO that words transformed into action.
Positive Transformation through SCIO’s Employment Services
I am incredibly grateful to have Richard Mccallum and Carmit Kordov in my corner as part of my Employment Services team. They have been my sounding board when circumstances have been trying, and on a more positive note, my springboard to a better future. Both provide unparalleled service, support, advocacy, assistance and compassion.
Life can change in a heartbeat. I have faced multiple barriers to employment because of health-related adversities. Although searching actively for years, I was refused job offers, because many employers failed to see my abilities over my disability. Since becoming associated with SCIO, the Employment Services team has helped me improve the quality of my life. I now have multiple seasonal and year-round roles working in customer service.
Before the Pandemic
Prior to COVID-19, I worked with the C.N.E. as an Info Booth Attendant in the Queen Elizabeth Building, the Enercare Centre as an Information Ambassador during large tradeshows, the Salvation Army as a Bell Ringer and as a T.T.C. Customer Service Representative staffing subway stations during scheduled closures. I also took on other projects through an employment agency periodically.
Finding Meaning During a Pandemic
Last year, I lost three jobs due to COVID-19 but continued my work with the TTC. This year, only the Bell Ringer position was restored. Despite the job losses and financial uncertainty, I still have an opportunity to interact and assist the public which provides me with purpose, meaning and income. I have gained new skills utilizing my professional and personal experience at every opportunity and in every employment environment. In addition, I truly love the work that I do, which SCIO has helped me obtain. I cannot thank the employment services team enough – my life has been greatly touched by them and I feel very fortunate to have been connected to them.
With any disability or health challenge, it’s important to manage one’s day to the best of our ability. Thanks to the assistance of medical professionals, supportive friends, family, organizations that lend a hand and employers who accommodate and understand what members of the disability community experience on a day-to-day basis, I realize that no challenge or task is too great. All that is required is a positive attitude, determination and perseverance. We are all capable of helping others meet their goals through small gestures of kindness and empathy. Through my employment journey, I have learned that no challenge or task is too small.