CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Employment for people with intellectual/developmental disabilities in Champaign County is changing.
The Employment First Act, signed into law in 2013, states that competitive and integrated employment in the community shall be considered the first option when serving individuals with disabilities of work age.
One of the ways that Discover Self Community(DSC) is implementing Employment First is by opening up opportunities for self-employment for the individuals we serve.
In 2017, DSC secured retail space located at 110 East University Avenue in Champaign and is called The Crow at 110.
Individuals served by DSC will soon begin selling earth-friendly, handmade goods at the space. Plans for the site include the gift shop being a venue that will promote the arts by hosting classes that will welcome community members, college students and families.
DSC Employment Services Director, Annette Becherer, explained that one of her goals with The Crow at 110 is to demonstrate capacity for people with disabilities in the area of the arts, as well as offer new opportunities for employment.
Though the location is not open for business everyday yet, they hosted a sneak peek of the new venue which features the work DSC artists have been creating.
The event also included an open mic format, with music, poetry reading and a display of written and artistic works.
“We hope that the community will join us for our Holiday Open House and get an idea of the direction we’re heading in with our vision for The Crow at 110, while welcoming the holiday season,” said Becherer.