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Video transcript

How ODSP’s Employment Supports Connected Curtis with a Job

When you take a trip to Whitby’s Real Canadian Superstore, the first thing you’ll notice is the neat rows of carts at the front door. When you’re done shopping, there’s a good chance you’ll be helped to your car. The experience will leave you with more than just a bag full of groceries thanks to Curtis Haley, one of the Superstore’s clerks. Curtis is a dedicated, reliable and motivated young man with a positive attitude that rubs off on other employees and his customers. Curtis also has autism.

For months, Curtis struggled with finding a job that was the right fit for him. That’s where Northern Lights, an Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) employment supports provider, came in.

ODSP Employment Supports helps people like Curtis prepare for, obtain and maintain employment.

“We’re just there to help the process,” says Kristina Kalm, Vocational Rehabilitation Specialist with Northern Lights Canada. “Part of the role that I play is to meet the client, have a good understanding of what their disability or barrier is, and find the right fit for the employer as well as the right environment for the client.”

“I remember when I met Kristina, I had a hard time finding a job,” says Curtis. “I just basically told her what I was interested in and she did her best and tried to find me the right fit.”

Curtis is extremely positive about his job, and his employer feels the same way about him. Cory Toutant, the Store Manager, says Curtis is a phenomenal employee. “He gets the job done and customers love him – just a great asset to the team.”

“Curtis is a success because I think he has really taken every suggestion and every action planning item that we’ve set out for him to heart,” says Kristina. “He is a really, dedicated, motivated, reliable and dependable person and employee. He has really followed through everything to the tee.”

When we asked Curtis what he likes most about his job, he said, “you know, I couldn’t just pick one. I like all of it. I like it that much.”