Meet Arielle

Arielle was short on confidence when starting a new job search last year, as many people are following a layoff. Today, she’s a valued member of the Meijer team in Marion. Arielle’s return to work highlights her abilities and showcases the difference vocational rehabilitation can make in the lives of people with disabilities.

Arielle is the third of four sisters growing up in Marion. She is a hard-working young lady with a heart of gold – and an intellectual disability that can make it challenging to communicate with those who don’t know her.

Arielle’s family was no stranger to Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OOD) and Goodwill. The family had some experience with the program through her sister, Miranda, who had previously received services from us. Sherry, Goodwill Employment Specialist, provided job development services to both sisters.

In 2019, Arielle worked one-on-one with Goodwill to develop a customized employment plan. With our guidance, she completed an application, interviewed, and secured a position at a large box store. Unfortunately, Arielle was laid off after nearly three years.

Arielle was eager to return to work, but the experience with her previous employer left her lacking the confidence she needed to start a new job search – until Audrey, OOD Senior VR Counselor, reconnected Arielle with Goodwill. Our Goodwill Employment Specialist took Arielle to multiple interviews and supported her during each interview until they found a great job match as a general merchandise clerk at Meijer in Marion. Audrey and Goodwill determined that Arielle would benefit from additional on-the-job training to build her confidence, so they set her up with extra support to help conquer her insecurities. After two months of job coaching, they felt Arielle was ready to work independently.

Greg Bell, Arielle’s manager, considers her “a huge part of our general merchandising team at Meijer. When she is not here at work, you can really notice the difference because she does an amazing job.” Greg notes how her confidence has grown quickly. “I feel that she has become more confident and assured in herself doing her job and knows she does good work. We all really enjoy having her here with us. Arielle is a great person, and we all hope she is with us at Meijer for the foreseeable future.”

Arielle is a prime example of what a person with an amazing support team, a strong desire to work and a well-defined blueprint for success can accomplish.