Jeanine Hoffas (JH) struggled to keep a job because she worked too slow and struggled with social skills. She worked for many years with Good Will Industries sorting clothing in the back room. She was unhappy and really wanted to work with the public but wasn’t offered that opportunity. So she came to Sunrise for job development. Her main goal was being able to serve and handle work that was not complicated and more customer service driven. JH had strict availability concerns; she was only available Monday- Friday from 9am – 4pm and could not do work that was too physical, included money handling or was more than 4 hour shifts. Her job developer negotiated with Wendy’s Restaurant to create a lobby cleaner position where JH could interact with customers and help them use the drink machine, serve their meals and help remove the trays from those disabled, elderly or in need of service. She also cleans the total dining area, restocks supplies and cleans the restrooms.
We helped her learn the initial duties and liaised with management to meet JH’s requirements. She had some difficulty with following protocol and being supportive of her co-workers. We explained the importance of team work and helped her understand the cause and effect of social situations. She has learned empathy and flexibility. We increased hours by including potato roasting and dish washing. We tried salad making and deep frying but those duties were not suitable. After much negotiating and adjustments, JH happily works two shifts a week, truly enjoys her job and is able to pursue other activities that enrich her life. JH was highlighted in a newspaper article describing the benefits of carving positions for those with disabilities. Wendy’s has hired three clients and was honored as 2014 Employer of the Year by Sunrise Enterprises.