Seguin is committed to integrate, enrich, and empower people with disabilities and other special needs, so they can be productive, valued members of society.
Seguin Success Stories
Finding Work and Independent Living
The individual's name has been changed to protect his identity.
Ten years ago Matt arrived at Seguin, looking for help in securing gainful employment and a place to live to his fullest level of independence. Initially Matt lived in a Seguin group home while struggling to find steady work in the community. Because of his developmental disabilities, he struggled through many challenges in reaching his dreams which are no different than those of a person without a disability: to grow up, to get a job and a place of his own to live, and to take care of himself. In order to live on his own, Matt needed steady employment at wages sufficient to pay his bills.
In the past decade, Matt has participated in Seguin’s Community Employment Programs. At first he had some success in group work-sites where staff supports were available to help him appropriately interact with his peers, and to ensure that tasks were completed with sufficient detail. In time Seguin worked to secure an individual job placement for Matt at Kmart, at which Matt struggled to meet the work demands with limited on-site job coaching support. Subsequently Matt began a job at one of the SEGUINWORKS businesses, the Seguin Auto Center, where he washed cars and was able to work effectively with a group of his peers. Matt felt comfortable in this sort of supervised setting, yet the Auto Center still allowed him access to community members within a community business environment.
But Matt was restless, and still sought his dream of more independence. In November 2009, with the help of Seguin placement staff, Matt secured a seasonal position at Toys R Us in North Riverside as a cart retrieval and stock person. He was initially hired only to work through the holiday season with minimal job supports per the employer’s request. The head of Human Resources at Toys R Us became Matt’s mentor and on-site coach, providing the natural supports that he needed to keep the job. As a result of Matt’s performance, he was offered a permanent part-time position at Toys R Us where he continues to work. In addition, Matt is part of a seasonal Seguin work crew that performs the primary grounds-keeping for Brookfield Zoo’s North parking lot, working alongside his peers three days a week with an onsite Seguin job coach. He has also maintained his job washing cars at the Seguin Auto Center one day per week.
With these jobs Matt has been able to move into his own apartment in North Riverside, where he receives ongoing drop-in support from Seguin staff. Matt has shown that he is willing to work hard to support himself, to learn to cook and clean his own home, and to be a reliable employee. In short, with Seguin’s support and family backing, he has transformed himself to become a productive and valued member of society. As a result of his accomplishments, Matt was given the Shining Star Award at Seguin’s annual Celebration Gala in June 2010. Matt has successfully integrated himself into his community and lives his life to the fullest – on his terms.
Job Success in a Difficult Job Market
Seguin Services is proud to recognize Participant David K. He was honored for 10 years of employment at La Grange Park Jewel—Osco. David is pictured with co-workers Katie Kavanaugh and Mary Hosso, and Manager Denise Carellas. This is quite an accomplishment. Andy K., David’s father, feels quite fortunate to have Seguin’s able assistance and has said that with Seguin’s help in job development and coaching, “the effect of David’s work on his sense of competence, his personal development, and his happiness has been immense.” Congratulations David!