OC Program Helps Developmentally Disabled Workers Find Jobs
ANAHEIM (CBSLA.com) — The Orange County Adult Achievement Center in Anaheim is helping developmentally disabled workers find jobs.
“We have a lot of different activities for them to do outside of the work activity, but the work activity is the most important one. It’s what we all strive to do. We strive for our own independence and that’s what we’re trying to help them achieve—is their own economic independence,” said Michael Galliano, the CEO of the OC Adult Achievement Center.
Santa Ana-based Caféjo, which makes coffee and tea, is the latest company to open part of its operation in the Anaheim warehouse where the clients gather every day.
The partnership has created minimum wage jobs for workers to count, sort, package and label products.
Bruce Vertrees makes $9 an hour.
“I’m trying to raise extra money. I’m planning on going to Knott’s Berry Farm next week, so I need extra money to make some money for Knott’s Berry Farm. And extra cash for dad … on the weekend, go out to eat and everything,” he said.
The clients package 10,000 pounds of coffee a day.
“Instead of trying to expand my own facility and hire more people, I thought, let’s meet with them, let’s have a conversation and see if it works. Once I came here, it was just amazing. They call Disneyland ‘The Happiest Place on Earth.’ Come here on payday, and these people are wonderful,” Patrick Rolfes, the owner and CEO of Caféjo, said.
KCAL9’s Michele Gile reports that the OC Adult Achievement Center is welcoming other companies to come there and set up shop.