… We’re Going to Brag (Just a Little)
Community Living’s staff rocks! Surely, this isn’t the first time you’ve heard this? Parents tell us, the individuals we serve tell us, even other staff tells us.
That’s why on July 21, the Staff Appreciation Committee (compiled of Community Living staff) put together a Casino Night themed party for all staff to attend. Of the 419 staff, 175 attended to eat, drink and gamble. (Not real money!)
Some staff couldn’t make the event for various reasons, but others couldn’t make it because they were working. When the Board of Directors heard this news, they decided to play for the staff on the clock. Depending on how well you played, staff received raffle tickets to place in bins for prizes. Prizes varied from gift cards to hotel stays, there was even a week trip to Table Rock!
Staff was able to socialize with other staff from different programs, as well as the Board of Directors. Carolee Patek, Vice Chair of the Board, told every employee thank you. “I think it is very important to let the staff know that what they do is appreciated,” she said.
What our staff does has not gone unnoticed. “What keeps me active on the Board (of Directors) is the energy I see from the staff,” Jeff Strickland, Board Member, said. “They work hard and are so excited to show up and do the work. The staff is where I get my energy from. They go above and beyond, so it drives me to match that.”
Why does the staff rock? Because they all like working for Community Living …(but don’t take our word for it …)
- “When I talk about my job and what we do (as an organization), I’m really proud of it,” Courtney Corder, Support Coordinator at Clever Center, said. “You feel proud that you’re doing something for other people, which is what makes me come back – the people we serve.”
- “This job teaches you patience and puts things in perspective,” Zach Whitcomb, Direct Support Professional in the Social Opportunities and Recreation (SOAR) program, said.
- “I like watching the people we serve gain independence and build self-esteem,” Alison Mack, Residential Manager, said. “For some of the clients that don’t have family, we are their family, and they become ours. It’s priceless. You can’t get that at a bank or flipping burgers.”
- “I like forming a long-term relationship with someone,” Sue McKinney, Center Specialist at Mahon Center, said.
- “No one here feels like they are above you,” Diana Regino, Recreation Leader in Adult Recreation Services, said. “Meaning you can talk to a director or Barb (President and CEO) just as you can a friend.”
- “I like working for Community Living because it’s a great environment,” Dami Akano, Direct Support Professional in the SOAR program, said. “It teaches you a lot of world skills. And, I get to give back to the community.”
- “The best is working for the individuals we serve,” Luisa Sanders, Vocational Instructor in Employment Services and Direct Support Professional for the Respite Center, said. “It’s not about me blessing them, but them blessing me. I feel like I am making a difference and I wouldn’t want to work anywhere else.”
It can best be summed up by Barb Griffith, President and CEO, who said we have the most amazing organization because of the staff. “Our staff is awesome because of the obvious demonstration of compassion, leadership and integrity in everything they do,” Barb said. “They go above and beyond their typical job duties on a regular basis.”
Day in and day out, the staff is making a difference. “You have a choice each day – to make it a good day or not,” Barb said. “That’s totally in your power. Working at Community Living, in whatever capacity, you are making a positive difference in the lives of others and in our community. That should make your choice to have a great day very easy!”
What would you like to tell the staff? Feel free to write a comment or share a story with us on our Staff Appreciation photo album on Facebook.