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Success Story: Raymond

Ray was referred to Goodwill’s Supported Employment program by Michigan Rehabilitation Services (MRS) while he was still a transition student at Hart High School.

Working with Goodwill Employment Specialist Tabatha Glezman, Ray secured employment with a cleaning company. He did his job well but was reserved and anxious around people. Ray is a person who is autistic, and his anxiety made it difficult for him to interact.

“I always had to approach Ray and start the conversation.” Tabatha recalls “He never smiled.” Nevertheless, Ray was reliable and performed his duties well. Unfortunately, after nearly a year, the cleaning company laid him off due to contract changes.

Upon loss of his job, Tabatha went to work finding Ray new employment. “Ray liked cleaning and had been very successful at his job at school,” she said. “So I helped him apply to McDonald’s in Hart for a cleaning position.” Tabatha helped Ray fill out his application and prepared him for his job interview. She met with Paige, the manager at McDonald’s, to discuss the best work environment for Ray. When the day came, she even accompanied Ray to the interview. All of this hard work paid off and Ray was hired.

After he was hired, Tabatha worked with McDonald’s to set up hours that worked best for Ray who lives with his parents. Ray was assigned job coaching services through Goodwill partner organization Michigan Rehabilitation Services. He did so well in his new position that those services were quickly not needed.

Although he is doing well, Tabatha checks in on Ray from time to time. She finds Ray very happy and more socially active. He even greets customers! “Ray likes his job,” Tabatha says. “It can be seen on his face and in his actions.”

It seems this new position is a perfect fit for Ray. He gets high praise from his employer and coworkers. They love the work that Ray is doing. “Everyone likes him and he is doing a great job,” Paige says. “We want to keep him forever!”

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