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Issue 3 - October 2017
News
Our thanks go to the Fox Family Foundation, who generously granted Aurelia $50,000 this month to partner with us in launching the Job Coach Development Program.  By collaborating with innovative organizations focused on solutions for vulnerable populations, the mission of the Fox Family Foundation is to ensure capable and motivated people-in-need can thrive inside their schools, careers and communities. 

In the coming months, Aurelia will roll out the new program, designed to foster Competitive Integrative Employment. Says founding Director of Programming Lisa Szilyagi, "Competitive Integrated Employment is a learning process as much as it is a goal. There is direct value to clients, their families, Job Coaches and potential employers in learning how to work as a team to build a working environment where employees with disabilities work side by side with peers who are not similarly impacted."  We look forward to partnering with the Fox Family Foundation on this new, important initiative!
And more thanks and gratitude go to the Jewish Communal Fund, for their generous $25,000 grant to support Creative Steps.  The Jewish Communal Fund facilitates and promotes charitable giving through donor advised funds. 
An extraordinary success! 
 
Eat. Drink, Give!, our 4th Annual Gala, was a big success on every level. We had record attendance, amazing energy and raised $73,000 to support our mission. A big 'thank you' to all those who attended and to our sponsors for helping create an event that will have a big impact on the population we serve.  
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We're one of LA's most inspiring stories! Thank you Voyage LA for helping us spread our message and mission. Read it here!
 
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Here, There and Everywhere!

You'll find Creative Steps at Target (where Ana Melissa works), Pepperdine, "Fitness for Autism" events, and the Aquarium!

Awards and Accolades

Congratulations to Christina Lara on her Educational Excellence Award! 
Watch and share!
At Eat. Drink. Give! we shared a video that illustrates what we do and why it matters.
Please help us by sharing it to spread awareness. 
Developing the individual potential of people with special needs. 
Client Highlights
Ben DiFrancesca, who attends Creative Steps North LA program, has a winning, positive attitude  - so positive, in fact, he has impressed more than one employer, and recently, had a choice of job opportunities! After seasonal changes impacted two longstanding employers, Bowl of Heaven, where he'd worked for three years, and a geology firm, where he'd worked for over a year, Ben found himself working only one day a week.



Not satisfied with this, Ben and his life coach, Monique, put together a winning plan. Based on glowing references and his restaurant experience, Ben applied to three restaurants and was offered two positions - one at Fresh Brothers and one at Wendy's. He accepted the position at Wendy's at two days a week.  
Additionally, after visiting a local pumpkin patch for a field trip and speaking to their manager, Ben was offered a position at the venue, helping with the petting zoo and inspecting pumpkins, among other responsibilities.

Monique is quick to point out that the Pumpkin Patch had over 30 applicants for Ben's position, and that the Wendy's manager offered him five days a week. "As with all their employees, Ben will be on a 90 day probationary period, and then if all goes well, Ben will earn a raise." Monique and Ben work together on the specifics of the interview, including where Monique will sit, and whether or not Ben needs coaching. "I was very impressed how well Ben did at all his interviews.  Ben interviews with great self-confidence."



Says Ben's mother, Chantal, "Credit should be shared with Ben's wonderful coaches and supervisors in the program, in which he has been privileged to participate.  A big thank you to all!"
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