Best Buddies Jobs: Sodexo & Chris – the Perfect Match!
Hiring people with intellectual and developmental disabilities isn’t just right, it’s good for business! Just ask Joe, a manager with Sodexo where one of our Jobs participants, Chris works. “He’s just a bundle of joy, always in a good mood and sharing his wisdom with the staff” says Joe. Another co-worker says that Chris is “part of the family now” and “we love having him as a part of the team”. Chris celebrated one of his proudest Best Buddies made moments in May when he reached his one-year anniversary at Sodexo.
Since the inception of the Jobs program at Best Buddies International in 1994, the Jobs program has worked with hundreds of employers across the country to increase employment opportunities for individuals with IDD. Some of the best partnerships come from companies that hire multiple Jobs participants and expand into different regions across the country (and even to some international countries.)
One employer, Sodexo, which is a food service and facilities management company, employed Jobs participants in Florida and Massachusetts before connecting with the local Chicago office in early 2015. Joe was hoping to hire someone to assist in the kitchen as well as be able to serve as support during peak times in the cafeteria. After going through the standard application process, Sodexo offered Chicago Jobs participant, Chris, a position as a Cafeteria Attendant!
Chris’ main responsibilities include food preparation for lunch and maintains the salad and soup bar area. Since Chris has started, he has shown continual interest in learning new things and continues to gain additional responsibilities. One of his newest responsibilities is manning the pizza station, which he has grown to love.
Best Buddies Jobs aims to form mutually beneficial partnerships with employers, and this partnership is a perfect example of what that looks like. For more information on the Jobs program, please contact Mia Pollock, Director of Jobs at email@example.com.