Employment Plus (E+), founded in 2001, provides opportunities for participants to make their own choices and decisions regarding their everyday life, allowing them to participate in and contribute to community through coursework, paid on the job training, community association, volunteer activities, and ultimately employment.
Employment is the main focus for all services offered. Participants develop new job skills during classroom instruction or with a job coach during paid employment training opportunities, including the ability to maintain employment, communicate with a supervisor and peers, and develop better work ethic.
Paid Employment Training Opportunities:
- Video/Audio — The E+ Productions team has produced everything from an award winning web series “Gettin’ Down“, PSAs and theatrical films, to company promos and training videos. They can provide your company with quality production work in video and audio. The E+ recording studio provides local filmmakers ADR and Foley work as well as multi-track recording sessions for vocalists.
- Janitorial — E+ has a contract to provide full janitorial services to the entire St. Marks campus on a daily basis and is looking for more jobs. E+ sweeps, mops, re-stocks and cleans bathrooms to keep the facility as a shining example of a job well done.
- Maintenance — E + handles all of the facility painting, minor repairs & furniture restoration at the St. Marks Campus & is available for contracted work in the community.
- Landscaping — E+ provides landscape maintenance services. They mow, trim and edge several properties and always seek more jobs.
Melbourne, Australia – July 10-12
Seoul, Korea – July 30-31
Berlin, Germany – September 4-5 (tentative)
Adults with developmental disabilities who participate in Employment Plus (E+), one of DDSO’s community inclusion programs, have had incredible success in the booming field of film and audio production. “Gettin’ DOWN” is a reality web series produced by program staff and students, following the daily lives of three men living in Sacramento, CA who happen to have Down syndrome. In early March 2015, the cast Richard Garrett and Scott McKern, and crew Robert Maciejewski and Dennis Curry got the news that their original content was an official selection for two awards at a Film Festival in Los Angeles.
The Los Angeles Web Series Festival (aka LAWebFest) is the oldest and largest webseries festival in the world, established in 2010 by Emmy Award winning producer, four-time NAACP Image Award winning producer, and playwright Michael Ajakwe. Over the last five years, nearly 1,100 web series have been shown at LAWebFest from 46 different states and 36 different countries.
“Gettin’ DOWN” won awards for Outstanding Reality Series and Outstanding Editing at the April 2015 event. The cast and crew became darlings of the festival, greeted with support and many accolades including the Grand Prize and invitations to premier at festivals in Rome, Italy, Melbourne, Australia, Berlin, Germany, Bilbao, Spain, and Seoul, Korea. Additionally, WHO was asked to write the official theme song for the Seoul’s first annual, invite-only festival.
Educating the public about Down syndrome is an important two-way exchange. Viewers benefit from a renewed perspective about the connectedness of life, and the film’s subjects have an opportunity to share – and be recognized for – their experiences. Melbourne’s festival is adding a panel discussion relating to inclusion of people with disabilities in filmmaking, and the “Gettin’ Down” team has been asked to speak on the panel. There are plans to connect in each city with local programs who also serve adults with disabilities in order to help mentor each country to create their own “Gettin’ Down” series.
The program will be seeking donations, crowd sourced funding and sponsorships to get to as many festivals as possible. Companies or individuals interested in being a party of this exciting story can contact Dennis Curry at (916) 973-1966 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Where’s Frank?” was a massive project arising from the budget crisis in 2010.
Participants in the DDSO-Employment Plus’s Video Production workshop worked tirelessly for over three years, serving as crew and research team, to bring this story about the budget cuts. Both staff and program participants felt the need to get the story out about those who would chip away at the Lanterman Act and those who would fight to save it.
The Production crew covered many protests and legislative hearings. One such protest was called, The Mommy Tsunami. A dedicated team of mothers of children with disabilities, along with family & friends, walked from Yuba City to the State Capitol over the course of several days. E+ productions was there every day capturing the process all the way through, culminating in one of the largest rallies on the State Capitol steps that took place during this time.
There is an in-depth interview with Pulizter Prize winning journalist, Ryan Gabnielsen, from California Watch addressing his investigation into the suspicious death taking place within the state hospital system along with Ryan’s interview. E+ was able to get an interview with Larry Ingram, former San Diego SWAT Office, who investigated the suspicious death of his brother in one of the state institutions.
The narrative thread through this feature film, is Art Bolton, advocate and former staffer for Frank Lanterman. Mr. Bolton takes the audience to the genesis of the Lanterman Act – The history of the state hosiptals and the creation of regional centers and services for those with intellectual delays.
The title, “Where’s Frank?” became an end question asked of many who were interviewed. Asking the question, “Where’s Frank?” (referring to Frank Lanterman) curious to consider what would he say today about these cuts.
Little known fact, but well over 90% of this entire film was shot on the Apple 4 iPhone & the film’s logo was created by an E+ participant, Kimi Balanay.
2331 St. Mark’s Way, Sacramento CA 95864
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