Job Title: Case Manager
Education: Master of Arts, SUNY Geneseo, New York
Previous Experience: Head Start Pre-school teacher, Special Education Aide
Job Tasks: Our company is a not-for-profit agency that provides jobs and training for adults with disabilities.
We work with high school students all the way up to senior citizens. We have several different programs within our one program: Residential programs, (group housing), seniors program, day habilitation (for those individuals that require intense one-on-one assistance). We also work with outside employers that need us to do their low-end jobs. We have two workshops that provide long term sheltered employment jobs. These jobs include: putting together small parts, building small internal parts (electronics), fast food vendors, janitorial, part time or temporary employment.
I work 8:00 am - 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday. Most of my day is spent filing, making phone calls, following through on federal, state or county programs and making sure that we are following all of the rules set forth for funding reasons. About 30% of the day is spent on these items, 60% is spent on one-on-one hands on with clients, face-to-face interventions and rehabilitation. 10% is spent socializing with teammates.
I do travel when needed to specific houses or jobs to check in with the employers to make sure that the person they have hired via us is working out and doing what is expected. I also travel to trainings.
A typical day could entail meeting with parents of a high school student that suffers from extreme ADHD all the way through having to calm down and intervene with an off the wall, beligerent, psychotic adult who believe everyone is out to get her. I work with simple ADD, older adults who have come from state run institutions with no family members left to advocate for them and/or young adults who suffer from bipolar issues.
Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best parts are: Working with individual people and seeing them learn to trust and rely upon you. Providing a safe haven for people whom otherwise would never have a trusted advocate. Helping a disabled person reach a personal goal of employment is a wonderful feeling. Assisting young couples as they struggle to stay above the cracks and connecting with older adults who relate to us as their family.
1. Be ready to give more of yourself personally then ever before.
2. Take all of the trainings that are offered in the field. Children all the way to death.
3. Network with your office mates, share ideas and know that it is not about you at the end of the day but about what you can do for someone else, someone in need.
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