Bright Spots: Local organization teaming up with businesses for employment opportunities
Do you remember your first job? It’s a special and rewarding time when you start taking on new responsibilities and earning your own money.
Northridge Fitness is providing that opportunity to several young people through a partnership with United Cerebral Palsy of West Alabama.
United Cerebral Palsy of West Alabama is a nonprofit corporation that supports 16 counties throughout the West Alabama community. UCPWA not only supports individuals with cerebral palsy, they’re also committed to advancing the independence and productivity of individuals with all disabilities.
Through their employment small support group program, eight of the men and women from UCP are working their first jobs at local businesses, including Northridge Fitness.
“What’s really been awesome is just getting to know the guys who are working with us,” said Northridge Fitness Manager Jordan Schwartz. “They’re great, they’ve interacted with our members and they’ve built relationships with them and they do really well with them, and they’re really successful with all their tasks and they’ve been such a joy to have working with us.”
Schwartz said she’s enjoyed helping Rashad and the others from UCP. Along the way, he’s taught her some things too.
“They’re always so excited to be here, so happy to have a job,” she said.
UCPWA Executive Director Leanna Feely said she’s noticed a huge difference in the individuals like Rashad who’re working at Northridge.
“Every day their confidence is built, and also where they may have been reluctant to go and speak to someone that they don’t know, now they feel more secure because they’re doing it every day,” she said.