Reach honoured as an inclusive employer

Non-profit organization hires people with developmental disabilities

Reach Child and Youth Development Society received an Inclusive Employer Award earlier this month.

The second annual Innovative Labour Solutions Awards recognized Surrey, Delta and White Rock organizations hiring people with disabilities in the business and non-profit sectors. Reach was nominated by Kurtis Reid, who is employed as a playgroup assistant by the Infant Development Program.

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Reid is an enthusiastic young man with Down syndrome. He helps with tasks in the Reach office as well as encouraging the children in the Infant Development Program to participate in play activities.

"Kurtis has been part of Reach since he was an infant," said Sherrie Jamieson, Reach's manager of early intervention services. "It's fantastic that he can continue on in the Reach family."

October is Community Living Month in B.C. and focuses on celebrating the gifts and talents that people with developmental disabilities bring to the community.

"We're very pleased to raise awareness of the benefits of hiring individuals with developmental disabilities like Kurtis," said Reach executive director Renie D'Aquila.

Inclusion BC's Ready, Willing and Able program aims to increase the employment rate of people with intellectual disabilities. Delta Community Living Society Solutions Employment participates in the Ready, Willing and Able program, supporting youth and adult job seekers with developmental disabilities to obtain sustainable, customized employment that matches the needs of local employers.

Interested local employers and job seekers can contact DCLS Solutions Employment at 604-946-9655 or ewheatley@dcls.ca for more information.

Reach is a non-profit charitable society that has been providing services to children and their families since 1959. Over 1,000 children and their families benefit from services on an annual basis.

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