It’s the Ability that Counts!

SUBMITTED BY: Lori Hann, Ability Employment Corporation

Ability Employment Corporation (AEC) provides career counselling and job placement services to persons with intellectual developmental disabilities and to those with other barriers to employment, such as mental health issues and youth at risk. AEC is a registered charitable non-profit organization incorporated in 1993 operating from offices in Clarenville and Bonavista.

At AEC, we offer a Learning Centre Program where our clients meet mainly on a weekly basis to learn life, self-help and socialization skills they can transfer to their employment and everyday life. Thanks to the Eastern Regional Wellness Coalition (ERWC), we have been able to create a “Healthy Living Program” that promotes healthy eating and physical activity.

Through the ERWC funds we received, we purchased new cooking equipment to outfit our kitchen area and exercise equipment to offer a drum-fit activity. During our healthy cooking sessions, our clients learn how to choose healthy food options, read recipes, make a list of ingredients, measure ingredients, operate kitchen appliances, prepare and store food safely and use kitchen equipment safely, all while working together as a team!

The drum-fit exercise equipment is a fun filled physical activity that encourages exercise while drumming to the music on an exercise ball. This activity provides all our clients the opportunity to participate regardless their level of ability.

The new “Healthy Living Program” made available by the ERWC funds has added a new dimension to our programs at AEC. While it has started out as a program for our Learning Center, we have incorporated aspects into other programming that is offered at AEC. Since the start of the “Healthy Living Program” we have noticed that attendance at our Learning Center has increased and our clients are showing a genuine interest in healthy living. This program has not only raised awareness of the importance of living well, it is also providing our clients with valuable life and socialization skills that will transfer into all aspects of their lives.

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