Disabilities Become Opportunities at Children's Mercy
Friday, October 10, 2014
KANSAS CITY - From guest services to human resources, education, and transportation, dozens of young adults are proving that disabilities don't mean they can't find or keep a job. They are part of an innovative program at Children's Mercy Hospitals and Clinics.
Kathy Smith is the program manager for Project RISE, which stands for "Reaching for Independent Successful Employment." She says it initially launched seven years ago with former patients and now employs the largest number of people with disabilities of any Kansas City company.
"Most folks with disabilities would tell you they would much prefer to be employed, rather than relying on Social Security benefits or something like that," Smith says. "They bring incredible problem-solving ability and talents to the workplace."
Roughly 57 million Americans live with a disability, according to the most recent U.S. Census data.
Smith says the program is built around on-the-job training and in most cases, Project RISE employees have not needed much in the way of special accommodations. She hopes the success of the program will inspire other employers to consider disability awareness and outreach to this group of workers to be part of their overall diversity efforts.
"Just like race or ethnicity, disability is just yet another factor that makes us all unique," Smith says.
More information on Project RISE is on the hospital website, ChildrensMercy.org.
get more stories like this via email
Health and Wellness
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, when the Drug Enforcement Administration encourages everyone to clean out …
Health and Wellness
BALTIMORE - This month marks the four-year anniversary of the #MeToo movement, and an art project aims to help incarcerated survivors heal by telling …
OGDEN, Utah - Utah is one of only a handful of states that taxes food, but one state legislator says taxing groceries should become a thing of the …
CASPER, Wyo. - A strong majority of voters across party lines say they want national rules similar to those passed in Wyoming to reduce methane …
BISMARCK, N.D. - A portion of American Rescue Plan funding sent to North Dakota has yet to be divvied up. Groups that want to improve the child-care …
PITTSBURGH - As businesses across the country deal with a massive labor shortage, Pennsylvania aims to entice people back to the workplace by …
ALBANY, N.Y. - Environmental groups want Gov. Kathy Hochul to sign a bill that mandates monitoring the state's drinking water for "emerging …
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Gov. Mike Parson is facing calls to get the Missouri Cybersecurity Commission off the ground after it was created by the …