When asked how her disability affects her daily life, Stefanie had a hard time coming up with an answer. “I just do things!” she said with a laugh. Stefanie has Type 1 diabetes (new window) which has resulted in a lower left leg amputation. She also has some vision loss. “The only disability that has limited me is the loss of the leg. I can no longer carry things over 20 pounds.” This means that she has had to find different ways to accomplish daily tasks. Stefanie first heard of the Neil Squire Society (new window) from a Social Worker with the Ottawa Hospital (new window). With an impressive background in health and science, Stefanie was looking for full-time work in a field where should could put her skills and knowledge to good use. She was also hoping to explore what careers she could practice without having to return to school for an extended period of time.
Of the employment services at the Neil Squire Society, Stefanie said “they have given me reason to hope that the transition from being unemployed to employed would be easier than I thought”. What Stefanie found especially helpful was reviewing her employment and education history with facilitators. It gave her a better sense of all that she has already accomplished. She also found that changing the screen colours and font sizes on her computer has made a “huge difference”. She has even incorporated this adaptive technology into her everyday life by modifying the settings on her home computer.
After being out of the job market for nearly 10 years, the Working Together Program has put Stefanie back in touch with what is expected of her from an employer standpoint. This has aided her search for a job in the health and wellness field. She is looking to secure a position as a Diabetes Educator or a Teacher at a massage therapy school. Ideally, she wants to use her skills, knowledge and experience to help others.
What advice would Stefanie give to others who are looking for work and considering Neil Squire Society’s Programs? “Do it!” She said with a smile. “Believe in yourself and these are the people who will get you to what you want to do or who you want to be.”
Congratulations Stefanie! Best wishes for continued success.