Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it -- Henry David Thoreau (1817 - 1862)
Heather Laurie was a stay at home
mom who wanted to enter the
labour market. She completed the
STRIVE program at Community
Employment Services and some
training at NorQuest. Now she is a
Disability Support Worker at REDI
Heather Laurie was a stay at home mom to six children. She home-schooled her children and when the last one
was graduating she decided to reconnect with employment. Heather was a few credits short of getting her high
school diploma and did not want to spend two or three years back in school.
Heather had dealt with disabled clients from REDI through a previous job at a Psychiatry office a decided that
would be a great field to enter. She started the STRIVE Program at Community Employment Services and took
training in the field of rehabilitation. She received a Certificate from NorQuest College in Basic Skills
Training-Direct Serve Workers. Heather did her practicum and in June 2005 was hired by REDI Enterprises as a
Disability Support Worker. She manages a caseload of eight. Heather supports individuals with disabilities to
work in community settings.
Heather said the biggest eye opener for her was “how far the community has come in recognizing the value of
those with disabilities, but also how far we still have to go.”
Kimi Duzan is the manager of Vocation Services at REDI. Kimi said that Heather has a positive attitude and a
strong desire to learn. Kimi stated that Heather’s passion and eagerness makes her an effective member of her
team. Kimi said they have hired two graduates from the STRIVE program and feels that it is a valuable tool in
recruiting potential employees.
Heather said the favorite part of her job is supporting individuals to do their own problem solving and working
with the advocacy organizations in the community.
Heather Laurie is a good example of how mature workers can work for you. For more information on the
STRIVE program, call Community Employment Services (403) 527-3400.
UNTAPPED is produced by Alberta Employment, Immigration and Industry
Call Medicine Hat at (403) 529-3683 or Brooks (403) 362-1278 or toll-free 310-0000