Nonprofit’s vocational training facility offers employment opportunities to adults with disabilities
(St. Louis, Mo., Feb. 18, 2020) Boone Center, Inc. (BCI) recently celebrated the one-year anniversary of its BCI Skills Center, a first-of-its-kind vocational training facility for adults with disabilities that partners with local businesses to create custom programs.
Founded in Jan. of 2019, the BCI Skills Center currently has three vocational programs including Salesforce, Manufacturing, and Hospitality Housekeeping. The center works with local businesses to design custom programs and, upon graduation, students move directly into the integrated workforce where they earn a competitive wage. Eight classes are currently in progress or completed with a total of 12 graduates to date.
All BCI programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) International, which assures a commitment to program and service quality with a focus on the satisfaction of those served.
“Our BCI Skills Center allows us to partner with businesses in the community that embrace diversity and seek excellent members to join their team,” said BCI CEO Ron Kloppenburg. “We are very proud of all we have accomplished in our first year of operations, and we look forward to expanding our programs in the near future.”
"One of the biggest problems we're facing right now is attrition," said Steve Young of True Manufacturing, a first Skills Center vocational partner. "What we've experienced with the BCI Skills Center graduates so far—the care, the want-to, the concern—it's obvious with them. And the knock-on effect is that it's infectious. Their care, their concern, their passion has had a contagious effect on non-disabled True team members, which is fantastic."
Founded in 1959, Boone Center, Inc. (BCI) enriches the lives of adults with disabilities by providing a wide selection of employment opportunities. The nonprofit’s Employment Continuum Model focuses on full employment combined with ongoing support for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Headquartered at 200 Trade Center Dr. W in St. Peters, Mo., BCI currently employs more than 300 adults with disabilities at its production facilities and through its competitive employment programs.
The Developmental Disabilities Resource Board of St. Charles County (DDRB) provides funding to the BCI Skills Center. The DDRB is a public taxing entity, commonly known as a "Senate Bill 40 Board”, which enters into funding contracts with agencies that serve individuals with developmental disabilities in St. Charles County.