Going Above and Beyond

Authored by: Joel Voorman, SE Recovery Specialist


Robert Anderson was once barely managing to keep afloat, working various jobs, including porter and car detailer for Enterprise Car Rental, and a bell ringer for the Salvation Army. He was struggling to find a sustainable job that he could enjoy and envision himself at for the foreseeable future.

One day, while attending a group at Portage Path Behavioral Health, Robert overheard chatter about the Supported Employment program at CSS and the success other group members had been finding there.

Robert had Portage Path staff refer him for CSS services, and shortly after, he was working alongside Supported Employment Specialist Michelle Mace to help him achieve his goals. Michelle assisted Robert with creating a resume that could stand out from other applicants and presented him with job leads, and they rehearsed job interview scenarios together so that Robert could feel comfortable and confident once the opportunity presented itself.

Michelle's assistance, coupled with strong follow-through and a positive attitude on Robert's end, netted Robert a job with ABM Parking Services, the company that manages the majority of Akron's parking garages. His duties include cleaning, maintenance, and customer service.
Robert says his supervisor has praised him for being reliable, honest, hardworking, and flexible. His willingness to help out at a different garage during the pandemic did not go unnoticed.

“It makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something when I put in a day’s work,” Robert said.

Robert has faithfully stayed in touch with the Supported Employment program over his six years of working. Although he is self-sufficient, it’s of comfort to Robert to know CSS staff is here for him should he have any employment-related concerns CSS can assist with.

Robert desires to keep up the good work for ABM and, eventually, return to school with high hopes of starting his own business one day.