Julie's Story + Disability Employment Awareness Month

Welcome to QC Enews Empowerment

Thanks for checking out our bimonthly e-newsletter designed to keep you “in the know” about the good things happening at Quality Connections, QC Learning, Evergreen Academy Preschool and QC Office. Enjoy!

– Armando Bernasconi,
Co-Founder and CEO

QC Impact: Julie's Story

While most of the people who come to Quality Connections have been referred to us because of a physical or developmental disability, we are committed to assisting anyone who needs our services when life does not go as planned.

Take Julie, who does not fit neatly into our client profile, but benefited just the same from our comprehensive programs to help people gain – or regain – employment.

Looking from the outside, Julie was the epitome of success. She was married and on the tenure track as a professor at a prestigious university.

After the birth of her child, however, Julie was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and her life began to unravel. She lost her job. She and her husband divorced. She got into some trouble and lost custody of her daughter. Ultimately, she found herself living in a halfway house for domestic violence survivors.

Julie relocated to Flagstaff to stay with her sister and after shedding many tears, came to the realization that she needed help. She worked to manage her disorder. She also sought help from Quality Connections to eliminate the barriers standing in the way of her rebuilding her life, finding employment, and becoming independent again.

“Quality Connections helped me put my life back together. I worked at the front desk and in QC Office,” she recalled. “I actually developed my computer skills at QC – skills I didn’t have as a professor since I had assistants working for me.”

When she was ready, Julie returned to academia. The new skills she obtained at QC helped her land a job as an academic advisor at an online university, and she is now teaching at Oregon State University. She has since remarried and regained custody of her daughter.

“My message to all people with disabilities, whether you have down syndrome, depression, bipolar or anything else,” Julie said. “Our lives are definitely worth living. We just need help to manage it to live a full and valuable life.”

Quality Connections: Providing Training, Lending Support & Removing Barriers to Employment

With the right training and support, anything is possible.

Quality Connections creates employment opportunities and provides vital support services to people with a wide range of disabilities and disadvantages.

We assist individuals in preparing for, obtaining, and maintaining employment, including basic employment skills training, career counseling, job coaching, and job development support. We work with both clients and potential employers.

To learn more, please reach out to Allie Lunsford (pictured), our Employment Services Director. You can call or text her at 928.607.4498.

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month

In recognition of the important role people with disabilities play in a diverse and inclusive American workforce, the theme for National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) 2022 is “Disability: Part of the Equity Equation.”Observed annually in October, NDEAM celebrates the contributions of America’s workers with disabilities past and present and showcases supportive, inclusive employment policies and practices. Learn more here.

We need Quality Connections . . . like you!

You can help individuals with disabilities become independent and productive members of our community. There are many way to be a ‘Quality Connection’ and get involved and all of them are important:

Every purchase from QC Office equals employment and job training opportunities for a person with disabilities.

Enable a person with disabilities to become a productive member of our community.

You’ll be doing good. Plus, you’ll get a dollar-for-dollar credit on your AZ state taxes (up to $800!)

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