JVS Receives Dept. of Human Services Champion Award

The Michigan Department of Human Services recently honored JVS with a Michigan Rehabilitation Services Champion Award in recognition of the agency’s steadfast commitment to empower individuals with disabilities. The Award honors a new JVS program that helped 130 Detroit Public School students with special needs build their skills through employment readiness training, career exploration and internships.

JVS launched Career Start in fall 2013 in partnership with Detroit Public Schools and Michigan Rehabilitation Services. The program began with classroom training throughout the school year at eight Detroit schools, followed by community-based internships during the summer with local companies such as Roberts Riverwalk Hotel, Department of Natural Resources at Belle Isle, Detroit Historical Museum, Friendship Meadows and others.

“This is the heart of JVS – empowering individuals to lead rich and fulfilling lives,” said Hadas Bernard, chair of the JVS Board of Trustees. “I want to thank our impassioned community partners comprised of businesses, schools and organizations who support our services in so many ways.”

DHS Director Maura Corrigan addressed award winners and other attendees at the sixth annual Champion Awards presentation and luncheon in Lansing on October 2. The event marked Investing in Abilities Month, which was proclaimed by Gov. Rick Snyder to encourage employers to hire qualified people with disabilities by focusing on their abilities and to increase the public’s awareness of the contributions and skills of Michigan workers with disabilities.

The MRS Champion Awards were engraved by students in the cabinetmaking/millwork program at the Michigan Career and Technical Institute, a vocational and technical training school in southwest Michigan operated by MRS.