Area program provides competitive job placement & support for workers recovering from mental illness

SARASOTA, FL, April 15, 2016 – Several deserving community members will soon join or re-join the workforce by way of the Supported Employment (SE) initiative, a service provided by Mental Health Community Centers, Inc. (MHCC).

The Supported Employment program, which began in July 2013, offers direct job placement and personalized, ongoing support to workers living with and recovering from mental illnesses. Employment specialists work to place program members across a wide range of jobs and industries deemed a natural fit to each individual’s prior training, education, and experience. The program is currently open and enrolling new members, with no fees or required testing for services.

Gainful employment is a key part of the recovery process for members,” said MHCC Clinical Director Mandy Feldmann, “…and Supported Employment offers an innovative process that makes employment an achievable goal, enabling qualified and uniquely motivated members of our community access to competitive job opportunities and ongoing support to ensure their success in the workplace.”

The program has attracted the attention of area employers, some of which have an immediate need for new workers. The combination of established employer relationships, no testing requirements, and creating goodness of fit based on members’ existing skills and experience helps expedite placement, with new members typically moving from initial call to program intake in less than 72 hours.

Since inception, MHCC’s Supported Employment program has achieved an impressive 66% placement rate (versus national average near 30%), with 75% of members maintaining their current job for six months or more.

Stated goals of Supported Employment programs include:

  • Vocational Readiness – Provide member instruction on job preparation and performance skills ranging from grooming and effective communication to payroll deduction, workplace safety, and more
  • Job Site & Employer Consultation – Assess suitability of the work environment, negotiating any necessary accommodations, and ensuring rightful placement best suited to both member and employer objectives
  • Retention Services – Provide regular training and assistance, and follow up as needed to cultivate new skills and ensure consistency and quality of performance

For complete program information, individuals and prospective employers may visit: https://mhcci.com or call Clinical Director Mandy Feldmann at 941-953-3477. For press inquiries, please contact Jennifer Ernst at 941-953-3477.

About Mental Health Community Centers’ Supported Employment Program
Supported Employment is a state- and locally funded vocational program that connects citizens recovering from mental illnesses with competitive employment throughout the county, from Sarasota to North Port. The program is a no-fee service provided by Mental Health Community Centers, Inc., which operates Sarasota County’s only drop-in centers providing caring, professional treatment and support programs to adults suffering from mental illness. For more than 40 years, MHCC has offered specialized education and therapy, peer-assisted liaison, and employment support programs that have enabled thousands with mental illness to develop skills and coping abilities, restore healthy lifestyles, and resume more productive roles within the community.

MENTAL HEALTH COMMUNITY CENTERS (MHCC). IS A REGISTERED 501c3 WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY, INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE #04-3585931 AND WITH FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS # CH38125 A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED BY THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS BY CALLING TOLL FREE 800-435-7352, WITHIN THE STATE OR VISITING: WWW.800HELPFLA.COM. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.”