Faced with mild intellectual disability, Stanley Bird started receiving services from The Center for Human Services nearly 30 years ago. He has lived independently in the CHS Tradewinds Apartments for more than 10 years, and with the help of the CHS Employment Services team, he has become an integral part of the Sedalia Democrat staff over the last few years.
“Stanley is an excellent example of how the CHS Employment Services Department assists individuals in seizing opportunities that ultimately changes lives,” said Kim Anderson, Director of CHS Employment Services.
Stanley began his employment efforts in October 1988, where he began working at the sheltered workshop. He tried his hand at jobs outside of the workshop that included both Tyson and Cookbook Publishing. However, Stanley returned to the sheltered workshop in 1997 and began working on the housekeeping crew at CHS, wherein Stanley and other individuals in the sheltered workshop cleaned the various CHS buildings.
In 2012, an opportunity presented itself to Stanley that he decided to try at Whiteman Air Force Base. During this time, Stanley found that he liked the autonomy of working at places outside of CHS and, ultimately, when the Whiteman opportunity dissipated, Stanley conveyed that he wanted to try his hand at working in the community.
While Employment Services staff assisted Stanley with his search in the community, he worked at the CHS Bloomin’ Gardens Greenhouse in order to keep up his employability skills and still earn wages. Stanley was soon offered a position at the Sedalia Democrat. It did not take him long to show his hard work and dedication to his new co-workers.
“Working with Stanley at the Democrat has been very rewarding for myself and for the entire staff,” Publisher Will Weibert said. “We have learned valuable lessons on communication, respect and patience. Stanley is an important part of our team!”
Stanley has been successfully working at the Democrat for more than three years and continues to be a dedicated staff member. When Stanley is not working at the Democrat, he also substitutes as a janitor with CHS when other staff are sick or on scheduled vacation.