Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas on June 19, 1974 · Page 24
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June 19, 1974

Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas · Page 24

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Fayetteville, Arkansas
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Wednesday, June 19, 1974
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But More Space Said Needed NorrhwMt Arkanwt TIMES, Weil.. Jun* 19, 1974 FAVBTTBVILLI, AMAN»AS Workshop Aids Handicapped By PAT DONAT ; TIMES Stall Writer Abilities Unlimited of North- ·west Arkansas (AUNA) is Ihe ;.only sheltered · workshop [or · handicapped persons between :Fort Smilh and the Missouri ·Une and the Oklahoma border land Carroll and Madison 'Counties. · Slatistlcs show that 25 out of '.1,000 population can benetit .trom the special services : provided and the present ·facility is woefully inadequate. ' "We can serve more clients :and offer better service to them .and the community if we have 'more space and 'more equip · m e n t , ' 1 said Al Griflee, .director. ! The larger space and more equipment is available if the ;»rea can raise $23.000 the amount needed to qualify for i grants of $88,000 which have ·already been approved bv , Mental R e t a r d a t i o n Developmental Disabilities Ser- · vice (MRDDS). , The sheltered workshop was ;flrst started in Fayetteville in 1967 in space at Eastgate ; Shopping Center; from there it · was moved to the present location at 224 Mill St. · Despite the fact that it has been here for seven years :AUNA is not a household word ·and this lack of public awareness is a handicap, said Wesley J. Gordon, f u n d drive 'chairman. : TO PERFORM A JOB T h e sheltered workshop prepares handicapped persons to perform a job, but in a . c o n t r o l l e d situation where '.mistakes can be correclec / w i t h o u t getting a dismissa ..notice. · The workshop operates in ; close cooperation with Arkansa: ^Rehabilitation Services (ARS' ;and serves individuals 15 yeari · of ffge and older. A person who has a menial -physical or emotional handicap '·a placed in the sheltered -workshop situation to learn how ;to work. A client is usually · referred by ARS and following ;an interview with David Colsto: ; coordination of client service; ia staff meeting is held to an the question "Can we serve this client?" If the answer K affirmative e client is placed in the e v a l u a t i o n program which usually lasts one month. "Training is the really unique hing about the workshop. We try to solve a d j u s t m e n t problems as well as teach a ikill," said Colston. He feels earning the best way to use skills is the greatest problem *aced by handicapped persons. In some cases, after the evaluation and a relatively short training period, the client is ready for placement. Placement in a job Is worked out with the client, employer and ;he counselor. "In many cases Ihe client places himself," said Colston. OTHER SOLUTIONS In other cases, however, where a client is not able to move out of the sheltered workshop situation there a r e two other solutions. He may be placed in the extended work program where the workshop hires him for specific tasks or in the work activities program. The latter is primarily for persons whose production is below 25 per cent of the normal production. "Regular employment is the end goal for every client and since July 1973, 10 clients have been placed in the labor market," Colston said. The length of time spent in each of the programs is dependent upon the progress made by the client. "It averages six months, hut may take two years for clients who are making slower progress, but who are gaining in skill," Colston explained. ·The Work Activities Program is "work-oriented but not work- dominated." In it. small subcontract jobs are performed, such as sorting and removing monograms for shirts. A recent contract requires rough carpentry skills and pallets used in transportation are repaired. The work is simple, and repetitive and when clients are not on the job they have field trips and other forms of recreation. "The hardest thing 1 have to do is to tell a client nol to come tomorrow because there 's no work," Colston said. Salvage work Is also per- ormed and rags are prepared ' r o m unsalable clothing. 'Salvage work is okay, but not nearly as good as the contracts where the client feels he Is actually doing a Job. They can tell the difference between a contract job and a task set for .hem to keep them busy," Colston said. "Wages are offered as an ncentive to the learning process and are scaled to the level at which a client produces. TIME VARIES The length of time spent in the workshop will vary according to the nature and severity of a person's handicap. Some remain only a few weeks, but for others the training may extend over a period of months. During the past fiscal year, i addition to the 10 placements, seven individuals were trained in the work activities program. Seven moved into other programs, such as the Rehabilitation Center at Hot Springs which teaches higher degree skills, and six just left the program, either moving out of the area or dropping out. "The drop out ratio is higher t h a n we would like," Colston said, "but with Ihe new facility we could get more contract work and perhaps be able to retain some of the clients we lose." C o l s t o n commented that during the last fiscal year the workshop served as many new clients as had been served since the workshop opened. The Bargain Box, a retail sale operation were u s e d household articles and clothing are sold, provides the dual purpose of producing income and providing a training center for retail sales. Income last year was $30,000 more than one- half of the income produced b the workshop which totaled $50.000 from other sections including the sale of rags, anc operation of the upholsters shop. AUNA operates on a budget of 1110,000 and the staff includes, in addition to Griffee and Colston, a superintendent of the work activities program, general shop foreman, retail store manager and office manager. The new workshop will provide space and tools fo accept new contract work which now has to be turned down because of the limited space. "It will provide a better environment for the clients and upgrade the public image," said -riffee. "AUNA is the natural step for graduates of the Washington County School for Trainable Retarded Children, but when you compare the facilities and the school they have it is hard to imagine students wanting to come here," said Griffee. MAXIMIZE USE "We can maximize the use of clients, and provide much better supervision. We coujd serve more individuals and serve them better in the new workshop," he said. "Success is not always measured by placement, but by the day-to-day accomplishments, and it comes in different ways for different clients," said Colston. Winning a fight w i t h a bigger hoy was the first step in independence for one youth. His victory wits a milestone in his progress toward overcoming some of his obstacles. Today he is taking specialized training at the ARS Hot Springs Center. A second client found that conquering bis fear of riding in a car opened many doors and revealed that other anxieties which had hampered his p r o g r e s s could also be conquered. Discovery by the staff of a remarkable talent for math gave a third client the recognition she needed to make adjustments to the world oi work. "Our biggest stumbling block is to overcome the attitude that h a n d i c a p s completely i n capacitate. Our clients think they cannot do anything, because this is the attitude that has been fostered throughout their lives. Once they learn they can do things and do them satisfactorily they are well on the road to mastering their situation," Colston said OTASCO VALUES AIR CONDITIONER 12-IN. CHARCOAL (HARCOAl BRIQUfT! Provides clean, frejh air, Owens-Corning "U-Trirrv ," Easily cut to fit any sir* un'rt, w-?*n Portable. Handy for picnics ·nd camping trips. Central Air Conditioner Filter by OWENS-CORNING. *»i».i/m. .474 ICC CHCfT GOLF BALL* Combines distance and "click" equal to any .35 ball? top pros. «is? 7 Folding CAMP STOOL Reg. 1.27 ITfiL TABU Reg. 11.99 8" pnrio TABLE ICC CUBt TRflY 7-PC. lALADJCRYtR/CHIPt DIP KT Attractive B-pc. serving *et Hat rc**lik» textured glow bowk, brass finish chip 'n dip clip. ALUMIAUH 19 long-lasting Polyflex webi. Pa Ho ilyU rront l*gj for liability. TRIPLE DECK FOOD CARRICR 78 ( 4 *oy capacity, K*«pt ic« for Hour*. Howdy far ovfmg* or parties, »)» Kf TIA C1AIII! CHARGE IT AT OTASCO Jumbo 25 oz. liit. r*kMm ftwli, Blue. SUM? , (S-M. fh*. »RM «T» Smrtnwnt CCTMT · Squire Fiyettevilfe, Ark. Phone 4i2-7.t«l Cr«ot for picnkt. 12'A-m. . lain. high. kt*d far Mwirtq or eorrvina rood. SHELTERED WORKSHOP .. .in f'ayetteville where handicapped learn skills Texarkana Hans , TKXAHKANA. Ark. (AP) -About 60 per cent of the property owners in a downtown Texa r k a n a area approved n proposal at a meeting here Tuesday to develop a 13-hlock area. The proposal calls for additional p a r k i n g , rmproved traffic and pedestrian circulation. It also would call for removal of some buildings near railroad tracks. The proposal was presented by Mayor Jack Trigg; Charles Conway. a Texarkana jawy'er: and Karl Jones Jr., president of the Chamber of Commerce and one of the leaders of Ihe Downtown Merchants Association.- Jones and Conway said the plan would cost about $1.4 million. 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