Title: DREAM Event (Beacon)

QWE Practice Guideline: 311 Develop relationships with local organizations and the business community to provide opportunities for enhancing skills development and employment.

Program Description: In an effort to bring attention to the overwhelming 70% unemployment rate for people with disabilities, nine local agencies, with direction provided by Beacon Group came together and created a new local focus event, Disability and Rehabilitation Employment Awareness Month (DREAM). Beacon Group, Goodwill, RSA, Community Partnership of Southern Arizona, DDD, Linkages, DKA, Easter Seals/Blake Foundation, and Direct Center for Independence all agree to joined forces to make a large local impact. Ron Barber, District Director for Representative Gabriele Giffords, an AbilityOne Champion and former District Director of DDD agreed to serve as the DREAM team’s spokesperson.

The main focus of the DREAM was to be a press conference and job fair held in October at the Beacon facilities. 22 businesses to set up tables at the fair with the intention of interviewing and hiring people with disabilities for a variety of jobs. During a two-hour period, an estimated 500 people showed up for the fair. As a result, 113 people with disabilities found jobs during the month of October.

Target Group: All NPAs

Outcomes/Results:

Individual: successful job matches and employment opportunities for job seekers with disabilities.

Financial Resources:

  • Start up: Time, event space, communications and marketing
  • Ongoing: Staff to continue event planning and communications, event space

Specialized Expertise Needed: Event planning and communications, program management.

NPA: Beacon Group, Tucson, AZ

Resources: Quality Work Environment Workbook

Contact Information: Chuck Tiller, V.P. of Rehabilitation Service, Beacon Group, P.O. Box 50544, Tucson, AZ 85703. Phone: (520) 622-4874