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Patient “Sparks” a New Future with Vocational Rehab Job Coaching

“I am very grateful for the wonderful opportunity. I think God gave me a chance to return a favor for all the people, opportunities, organizations, and my family who have helped me overcome my disabilities throughout my life.” – Raymond M., Jr.

The clinicians at Rehab Without Walls are dedicated, highly skilled, and experienced in all areas of neurorehabilitation, including vocational therapy where they have over 40 combined years helping people to gain and maintain productive work. Raymond, born with significant vision and hearing impairments compounded by a learning disability and cognitive limitations, faced significant obstacles and challenges. Nevertheless, he exceeded everyone’s expectations, most especially his own.

Newly employed at Orthotic Specialists, Raymond brings his enthusiasm and dedication to his job and is surprising his employer everyday with his self-advocacy, motivation, and enthusiasm. Raymond’s outcome exemplifies what happens when a hard-working individual receives quality, comprehensive rehabilitation directed towards a vocational outcome. Without a doubt, Raymond is a star at his job. Visiting him at work, you would notice a Dallas Cowboys hat placed on the countertop near him. As a lifelong fan, he proudly wears it to and from work in support of his favorite team.

Raymond graduated from Gateway Community College in May 2022. Enrolling in the welding program at Gateway, he would have to work a little harder than his peers. Born with a rare condition known as Panhypopituitarism, Ray is legally blind and suffers from combined vision and hearing loss, something you would never know when watching him weld and perfect his craft.

Brett and Barb Boutin, owners, and operators of Orthotic Specialists, graciously offered Raymond an opportunity as a non-compensated apprentice. With Rehab Without Walls Vocational Rehabilitation providing on-site job coaching, he began his internship in January 2023. Raymond learned to operate the ultrasonic welder and became primarily responsible for the fabrication of orthotic fasteners. Moving from intern to employee, he will soon be working 20 hours a week!

Raymond’s work ethic is something to see. With white cane in hand, he takes two buses to get to work and if needed Ray is known to call an Uber to be sure that he arrives at work on time. Ray works extra hard to complete all tasks.

On pot-luck barbecue day at work, you can find Raymond warming up his homemade beans he and his mom prepared, and you will immediately experience a delicious, mouth-watering aroma. He is a star at cooking them!

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