Farah (name changed) has been living in Vancouver for the past 20 years. She had a degree in special education from her home country and wanted to upgrade her qualifications, but family problems made it difficult. So Farah started working part-time in a senior facility as a Dietary Aide. However, she was soon diagnosed with ulcerative colitis (opens in a new window) and arthritis (opens in a new window), which caused her considerable pain. “I started feeling low every day with my health problems,” she says.
Farah heard from her friend about the Neil Squire Society. She was referred to the Solutions for Employment program, which helps people with disabilities and injuries find and maintain employment. The team worked with Farah to figure out her strengths and how to best upgrade her skills. She met her case manager, who assured her of her capabilities and supported her.
The team completed psycho-vocational and career assessments, as well as occupational therapy assessments, to work out what path would be a good fit for her. Eventually, Farah went back to school at the age of 50. “It was not easy for me, but [my case manager] always encouraged me and guided me,” she says. She graduated from CDI College with a Diploma in Social Services. At the same time, she participated in the Computer Comfort (opens in a new window) program to hone her digital skills.
Today, Farah is working as a Settlement Worker. “I am still in contact with [my case manager] and always take her advice where I need,” she says. “She is my mentor, without whom I would not be able to complete my journey to success.”