Friday, February 16, 2018

Vincent House Team Spotlight: Career and Learning Center

Did you know that Vincent House has a Career and Learning Center in addition to our Recovery Through Work Program? In 2011, Vincent House’s Career and Learning Center (CLC) was established in partnership with the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR), a government program under the Department of Education to help individuals with disabilities secure the resources they need to return to work. The CLC serves our members who are clients of the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation in securing permanent employment.  It is separate from Vincent House's Recovery Through Work (RTW) program.

Current Vincent House members who are ready to pursue work after participating in RTW can meet with a DVR counselor to identify the needs and resources individuals may need in order to be work ready, and then link them to these resources. Often one of these resources is a job coach. Staff of the Career Learning Center are job coaches and work in partnership with DVR counselors to help folks meet their vocational goals so that they can be successfully employed.

While many different nonprofits in the Tampa Bay area provide services similar to our Career and Learning Center, what makes the CLC at Vincent House unique is that the staff in both the CLC and Recovery Through Work teams work in partnership on behalf of the members to ensure that the member is working on their vocational goals and skill development while participating in the RTW. The Career and Learning Center works with individuals of all disabilities, not just mental illnesses however if an individual referred by Vocational Rehab also has a diagnosed mental illness, our job coaches can refer them for membership in the Recovery Through Work program. Many of our current members initially came to Vincent House as clients of the Career and Learning Center.

Staff in the CLC provide a full range of job development services. They help members in creating resumes, applying for jobs, and preparing for interviews. In addition, staff are able to assist members in fine-tuning professional appearances, advocating to employers, and attending interviews with the members. The CLC goes above and beyond by helping members in completing new hire paperwork, supporting them through orientations and first days of training, as well as monitoring each individual for six months after they secure the job. 

Vincent House CLC staff liaise between community employers to develop partnerships for employment opportunities for our members.  If you are a current DVR client and are looking for a provider for job development or an employer looking to partner with Vincent House to secure skilled, reliable employees, please contact Lindsay Taylor, Program Director of Vincent House’s Career and Learning Center to discuss the next steps to meeting your goals!   

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