Employing people who are supported by job coaches has been a game changer for me. The impact on the atmosphere of the club, along with the fact that they do a great job has made a huge difference.

Tate Metcalf, owner of Sisters Athletic Club  

Creating Meaningful and Inclusive Workplaces

We Believe  

Our Employment team is at the heart of our organization and brings our mission statement to life; they advocate for the people we serve and are agents of change in the community.

Employment is a key to full citizenship for Oregonians with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). As with all other citizens, for individuals with I/DD, employment has many positive impacts. These impacts include increasing self-worth, building relationships, and access to community resources.

  • Everyone can work, and there is a job for everyone.
  • Our job is to be creative and tenacious in providing support.
  • Not working should be the exception.
  • All individuals, schools, families, and businesses must raise their expectations.
  • People will be hired because of their ability, not because they have a disability.
  • Communities embrace people who contribute.
  • Everyone has something to contribute and needs to contribute.
  • People are healthier, safer, and happiest with meaningful work.
  • Employment is a win/win for everybody.
  • Employment creates opportunities for more culture in the workplace.

Meet Cody

Cody stands with his back to a brick wall, his arms cross over a red T-shirt as he looks off to the left.

In 2018, Cody Sullivan made history as the first person in Oregon with Down syndrome to complete four years of college. Today, Cody works as a part-time educational assistant (EA) for Portland Public Schools. He is again making history by joining the thousands of teachers that transitioned to virtual teaching during COVID. Thank you to Cody and ALSO’s Employment Director Chaz Volavka for modeling inclusive employment in 2020.  

How It Works For Employers  

ALSO’s specialized Employment Services are designed to fulfill the employer’s needs while providing meaningful employment for the individuals we support. Our customized employment approach for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities offers a partnership with your business and ALSO. Through this partnership, you will gain responsible, productive employees who will gain a sense of accomplishment and pride in the work they do for you.

Our employment services include:

  • Delivering a person-centered care approach for each individual, honoring the person’s right of individual choice and input.
  • Matching your company with qualified applicants with the skills and personality to fit your business needs and culture.
  • Tailoring part-time positions of 10 to 20 hours a week.
  • Training and ongoing support provided at no cost to your company.

Five Myths and the Real Facts for Employers

How It Works For Job Seekers

ALSO helps people with disabilities make informed decisions about work, benefits and the use of work incentives to achieve their employment goals. Many people with disabilities believe that they will lose all of their federal and state benefits or their medical insurance if they go to work, but this is seldom true.

Our individualized support works with job seekers to develop a career development plan that assesses skills and goals while working closely with business partners to create jobs that fulfill their specific needs.

Let’s Work Together

Portland Metro | Chaz Volavka | cvolavka@alsoweb.org | 503-489-6588

Central Oregon | Spencer Brown | centraloregon@alsoweb.org | 541-410-0317

Schedule a tour today and let us showcase ALSO’s services, vision, the people we support, and our staff. To schedule a tour, visit our events page or contact Sarah Cinquini. sarah.cinquini@alsoweb.org | 503-753-1239. We’re all in this together.

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