A Wonderful Opportunity for Braeden and Melissa

October 19, 2016

With the help of the Neil Squire Society’s Working Together program, the South Okanagan Women in Need Society (new window) (SOWINS) were able to grow their staff and get much needed work done that they wouldn’t have otherwise had the resources to do.

Working Together participant Braden with his supervisor, South Okanagan Women in Need Society receptionist, VeronicaEstablished in 1981, SOWINS is a non-profit organization that works to prevent the abuse of women and children, raise awareness of the effects of abuses and works to support those overcoming the impacts of abuse. Serving the South Okanagan region, an area covering roughly 4000 square miles, SOWINS offers shelter and programs for women in crisis.

“Thanks to the Working Together wage subsidy we have been able to start the process of going paperless by scanning all of our documents. Some of them go as far as the creation of the Society [. . .], and there’s always the risk of losing the information due to the ink fading,” says SOWINS receptionist Veronica, who supervised the employees. “Without the wage subsidy, we wouldn’t have been able to hire someone to complete this task.”

With Working Together, SOWINS was able to give two capable students a wonderful opportunity. Braeden and Melissa both have Autism (new window), while Melissa also has ADHD (new window).

For Braeden, it was his first paid job and he learned to work independently.

“Braeden has been a great asset to our organization and we feel very lucky to have the opportunity to have him working,” says Veronica. “Braeden is very focused and has an amazing attention to detail. He’s also very polite, punctual, confident and dependable.

“He required no supervision, and whenever he had a doubt, he would ask and make sure he had all the information necessary to continue working.”Working Together participant Melissa hard at work.

For Melissa, who wants to be a teacher, it gave her much needed financial independence, affording her to buy a new phone. It also got her adjusted to the schedule of a regular workweek, preparing her for a future career.

“She has required very little supervision, and since she was already computer literate, she only needed to be shown how the scanner and system work,” says Veronica. “She’s a fast learner and dedicated.”

Veronica “absolutely” recommends the Working Together program for other business looking for employees.

“We also feel very lucky to be able to give the opportunity to a person with disabilities to gain employment experience and help [them] prepare for future employment opportunities.”