VALPARAISO | An increased demand for services, coupled with the closure of the ARC of Northwest Indiana’s group homes has led to an expansion of staff at Opportunity Enterprises.
OE officials announced that during the week of Dec. 23 the non-profit had hired its 500th employee. In the past five months, 70 new staff positions have been created and filled at OE, and more growth is anticipated for 2014, they said.
“Many of these new jobs include direct service professionals and they mostly work with the participants, working with our outsource program in the workshop, in a group home, or with our art program. The need for our services is huge and so we expand our services to meet that need. We’re really excited about it,” said Lindsay Ellis, development associate.
As a result of adding new positions, OE is now ranked as the fifth largest employer in Porter County, moving up from its eighth place position.
OE serves more than 1,100 children and adults with disabilities at locations across Northwest Indiana region. One area of growth for OE has been in the expansion of their Lakeside facility in Valparaiso near Lake Eliza.
“Our Lakeside facility is fully functional now. Through this facility we offer our Daily Living Skills program, Renewed Horizons program, and our Enriching Possibilities program and these services have expanded to accommodate more participants now too,” Ellis said.
David Stupay, president and CEO of OE, said it's been a great few months for OE.
"Our Lakeside facility is occupied, we added 20 new residents to our supported living program, we opened a new respite home in Merrillville, and we increased the enrollment in all of our programs. Families continue to look to OE for support for their loved ones with disabilities and we have been expanding to meet their needs,”
“We have an awesome team that remains committed to serving the people in our care and providing the highest quality of services to those that depend on us," he said. "The program expansion and growth in our staff ensures that every person with a disability in the region has an opportunity to get the support they need to live a fulfilling life.”