Conk Overcomes his Limitations


Jeff Conk is legally blind. But his vision limitations don’t necessarily mean his life options need to be limited as well. Currently, Jeff has one-on-one support from Job Coach Susan Hajek, who goes with him to various job assessments at restaurants, grocery stores, community centers and other sites to find out what kind of work will best suit Jeff’s particular situation. Susan is exclusively dedicated to Jeff’s vocational journey, working in coordination with his KSI Employment Specialist Shronda Bynum to support Jeff with guidance and training.

At a worksite like the Milford Elks Lodge, where he sometimes works with KSI’s janitorial crew, Jeff proves there are plenty of jobs he can do with his abilities. At the lodge, he vacuums floors, cleans mirrors, wipes down condiment holders, spreads table cloths and puts on place settings for banquets, all with Susan’s supervision.

“He’s trying to accomplish employment independence,” explained Susan. “He’s working toward the ability to walk through buildings safely without guidance, and to do things on his own without having someone to depend upon.”

“His goal is to get a job, no matter what it is,” said Employment Specialist Shronda Bynum. “The one-on-one support he has now will follow him into any engagements at KSI or in community employment. He may never be fully independent in the community, but he has a lot of ability to work. He just needs someone to guide him through it safely.”

Jeff’s positive disposition and a firm belief that he can accomplish anything is what keeps him moving forward. “You have to have that positive self esteem before you can do anything,” said Shronda. “That’s his fuel.”

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