The Allies Division of Vocational Services connects adults with special needs to employment opportunities in their communities. Our supported employment services include job development, job coaching, follow-along services, career exploration, and job sampling. We also offer follow-along and retraining services to keep skills up-to-date and relevant. For people who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing, we have Employment Specialists that are fluent in American Sign Language. These specialists not only assist the new employees, but also provide employers and coworkers with the resources to ease communication. To learn more about our vocational service and our eligibility requirements, please contact, Darren Garansi.
Job Development: Job development, also called pre-placement, is the first phase in our supported employment program. At this stage, the Allies Job Coach helps individuals find jobs of interest, helps them through the application process, sets up the interviews, and prepares them for the interview through role-playing. The job coach teaches them about appropriate dress and behavior in a work environment, and provides assistance with transportation to the interview. Often times, the job coach attends the interview to provide any additional needed support.
Job Coaching: Job Coaching is the intensive support phase in our supported employment program—it occurs once individuals are hired for a position. At this point, the newly hired employees meet with our Employment Specialists to prepare them for the new job. Allies Employment Specialists coordinate any needed training for the positions, as well as attend any on-site orientation programs until the employees feel comfortable enough to work independently on the work site.
Follow-Along Services: Our Employment Specialists frequently communicate with the employers to ensure all is going well on the job site. They provide additional training and support services for the employees whenever it’s needed to ensure a productive and positive work environment for all.
Career Exploration: Allies provides Career Exploration services for adults that are no longer part of a school system, but need assistance finding a career that meets their interests and abilities. Often times, this service is for adults that had a trauma such as a stroke or disability from an accident, and they now need assistance re-entering the workforce. Our Career Exploration counselors help them find careers of interest, as well as coordinate needed training programs to help them adapt to their new employment situation.
Job Sampling: Our Job Sampling program is generally for students and adults that have not previously worked. This service helps individuals identify their interests and skills and helps match them with an employment field. We coordinate unpaid internships that allow individuals to gain valuable on-the-job experience while giving them the time to determine whether or not they would like to pursue a paid position in the field. Allies job coaches always accompany students on their internships to provide on-site learning and assistance.
Allies Transition Services
Allies provides Transition Services to students aged 14-21 who are making the move from high school to the workforce. The people we support work with Allies counselors to help develop real world skills and create a career plan that details their interests and strengths. Our counselors walk them through the interview and hiring process and then provide on-site job coaching once they are hired. We provide the support and training to help ensure that each person makes a smooth transition into the workplace, so they can feel good about themselves and their accomplishments. To learn more about transition services in your area, please contact Darren Garansi.
Figuring out what kind of work you want to do is sometimes harder than actually working! Career Gateway provides recent high school graduates the opportunity to participate in three different internships so that they can learn firsthand what kind of job they are good at and what they enjoy doing.
The program begins with an 8-week training course in life skills and job-preparedness. During this time, students learn about career exploration, resume writing, budgeting, mastering transportation, interviewing skills, and social interaction. They also learn how to work in teams and how to effectively communicate so that they can succeed in the work environment.
The next phase of the program involves a series of internships that give students the opportunity to experience working in three different worksites. The internships selected are based on the student’s interest. Each internship lasts for six hours over a two-day period, which gives students enough exposure to understand the functions and culture of the work environment. Bi-monthly group sessions are held at the program site between internships so students can share their experiences and what they learned with the class.
When the internship phase is completed, the Career Gateway staff helps the students find more permanent employment in the field of their interest. They assist them through the interview and hiring process and provide guidance to locate further supports on the job if needed. For more information about Career Gateway, contact Darren Garansi.