It could be any Tim Hortons on a weekday morning. The scene is the same: a long row of cars in the drive through, and a continual line of people inside. But since Tim’s is a prime example of fast food efficiency, both lines move speedily, and customers leave satisfied, many to return the next day. Do you ever wonder what it takes to keep everything running so seamlessly? Brooklin Tim Hortons franchisee owner Kevin Lauzon knows: it takes dedicated employees and well maintained machines. Lucky for Kevin, he has Bob.
Bob Hill was born prematurely and suffers from severe short-term memory damage. In the past, Bob has faced barriers to employment, but since receiving employment supports through the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP), Bob has been able to experience what it’s like to have and keep a job that’s a great fit for him.
“I clean, repair and do preventative maintenance on a lot of the machines here,” explains Bob. “I get to problem-solve and work with my hands, and I get to do something I know and that I really love.”
Northern Lights Canada, Bob’s employment supports service provider through ODSP, helped him find, train for and retain his job at Tim Hortons. Northern Lights Employer Liason Beverly Sirrs says that as soon as she met Bob, she knew he’d be the perfect employee for Kevin.
“I think that Bob brings something that a lot of people couldn’t do,” explains Beverly. “This position is all fine motor skills and small mechanics work, and that’s what Bob is good at.”
Since connecting Bob and Kevin, Northern Lights has been providing ongoing support to them both.
“They can call us any day,” says Beverly. “We’re always there to help out.”
Kevin says that’s one of several advantages for employers to hire through an ODSP Employment Supports Service Provider such as Northern Lights.
“We know that anyone that they refer to us, there is that level of support,” he explains. But he adds that since Bob is so good at his job, the support they need now is pretty minimal.
“He’s an excellent employee,” Kevin says. “He does exactly what we expect from him.”
Along with gaining a dedicated and skilled worker, Kevin has also seen some of his machine-related expenses go down.
“Bob identifies problems before they cause failures,” he explains. “And it results in lower down time and less repair costs for us.”
And for Bob, the results are more than just a paycheque at the end of the day.
“Ever since I started working,” says Bob, “I’ve felt I’m contributing to society and my life has more purpose. I’m just happy to be given the opportunity to show how good I am.”
And if you asked them, it’s probable Kevin’s customers, all relying on that typical Tim Hortons efficiency, would say they’re happy Bob has been given the opportunity too.