For Sherry, her new job at the bookstore is a gateway to a world of possibilities.
When asked by her caregiver if she enjoys her job, she smiled and said, “Mhmm.”
Helping Sherry achieve her new position, is the Opportunity Foundation.
“The Opportunity Foundation has been in Central Oregon since 1965, and it’s purpose is to serve adults with disabilities,” said the Business Relations Director for The Opportunity Foundation Lew England.
The Opportunity Foundation helps disabled adults get jobs through their thrift stores, coffee shop internship and other job search programs.
The foundation even helps folks find group housing with care teams to aid in leading normal and happy lives, that includes the Maple House where Sherry lives.
Around 40 disabled adults live in the nine houses that The Opportunity Foundation manages.
However, the foundation is in need of fresh faces.
“There’s helping people with just the daily aspects of living that they can’t do without, so we can’t close our doors and we need that support,” said Maple House Program Manager Cat Smith.
The Opportunity Foundation has openings for part-time, weekend, and full-time paid caregivers.
Prior experience is encouraged, but the foundation is looking for anyone with a passion for people.
“When we’re understaffed, what happens is that everyone is in the house, and they don’t get to be a part of the community and then we lose that, and the community loses that as well,” Smith said.
Without caregivers, Sherry wouldn’t be able to be around the books she loves, and greet the community as herself.
“If anybody out there is looking to make a change, and they want to work in a place where they can impact somebody, now is a good time to pursue what you’re interested in,” England said.