Meet Charlie: A Woodbury Client Success Story

desktop 004Charlie and his mom 2

Charlie is an Opportunity Services client in Woodbury that started working with OS when he was forty years old. Previously, he had lived at the Cambridge Regional Center for most of his life. Following the disestablishment of institutions in Minnesota, Charlie moved into a group home and began his journey with Opportunity Services. Although it would be a long process, Charlie’s family and caseworker hoped that OS could help integrate Charlie into the community through outings and community employment. Charlie learned how to collaborate with other people and joined several work teams throughout his time with OS. His favorite job was Heritage Displays where he used to sweep the floors after new cabinets were made. In the last few years, he has become less mobile and can no longer join the OS work teams. Charlie still enjoys coming to the center where he participates in community outings and enjoys playing ball with staff and fellow clients.

Charlie’s story is a great example of how community-integrated programs can help the transition from institutions and sheltered workshops. Even though there were doubts that Charlie could be in the community following his long stay at the institution, Opportunity Services taught him the skills needed to work with others and enjoy getting to know new people. Charlie is a valued client in Woodbury and always puts a smile on the face of other clients, staff and visitors!