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Thirty-eight year old Donald Jean, a man with special needs, landed his dream job working as a greeter at Modell’s in downtown Brooklyn. “All I’ve ever wanted to do is work,” Donald shared. The job is an actualization of Donald’s expert knowledge and passion for sports, especially basketball, which he plays often. “This job is not only transforming Donald’s life, but his peers at the program, who are inspired and motivated by him,” said Edwin Corchado, Senior Direct Support Professional (DSP) at HeartShare’s Brooklyn Day Habilitation Program. “People with disabilities still face discrimination in the workplace and we want our individuals to have a fair shot at the job they want,” said HeartShare Community Resource Specialist Roni Soriano. HeartShare’s employment partners and their teams feel the same way. In talking about how much the Modell’s team enjoys, respects and depends on Donald, Modell’s Store Associate Luis Rodriguez, explained, “Everybody should be treated equally. Everybody is capable of playing their part. They can work as a greeter, in maintenance or in stock. Businesses should take time to see what these unique, motivated and skilled people can do. Don’t judge a book by its cover.”
To learn more about how to become a HeartShare employment partner, contact Joshua.Skolnick@heartshare.org.