One such case is that of forty-nine year old Jim,* who was a courier for a major storage and information management company. His job entailed picking up bins weighing as much as 70 lbs. and driving a company vehicle to transport client materials to company locations. He injured his right arm when he fell while trying to catch a falling container.
A few months after his injury, his doctor released him back to work on light duty. His employer, unable to accommodate those restrictions, enrolled him in ReEmployAbility’
Fifty Forward’s Program Director, Lisa Maddox, assigned Jim to the front desk, performing mostly administrative tasks, greeting guests, and giving tours. “We rely heavily on volunteers to help us run our nonprofit organization so we welcomed the help,” said Maddox. “Our members took to him right away! He was very well liked.”
Jim worked at Fifty Forward for four months while he continued treatment for his injury. He learned a variety of new skills, met many people, and reported that he enjoyed the organization and the people he met there. Once Jim’s doctor determined that he had reached Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI), meaning he had healed to his maximum capacity but would have some permanent restrictions that impact his work duties, Jim could not go back to his original position at his company. The requirements of his old job were just too strenuous for what he was now able to do. While unfortunate for the company to lose a good worker, it was even worse for Jim because now he was without a job… or so it seemed.
Because of his newly acquired skills and his stand out performance while in placement with the nonprofit, as soon as Fifty Forward Donelson Station had a position available, they contacted Jim and offered him the job. Jim eagerly jumped at the chance and joined the nonprofit on a permanent basis performing the same job he had held during his participation in the Transition2Work program. What started as an unlikely job became his new career.
“In some cases, injured workers cannot return to their pre-injury position,” said Debra Livingston, ReEmployAbility’
The Transition2Work program places injured workers with local non-profit organizations to perform modified light duty assignments. The employer pays wages to the injured worker while at the non-profit. The injured worker benefits by easing back into the workforce, enjoys the camaraderie of a work environment, and gets the benefit of helping others.
Founded in 2003, ReEmployAbility is the largest national provider of early return-to-work (RTW) services and transitional employment programs. Our Transition2Work program offers employers a turnkey, cost-effective solution to modified light duty assignments, reducing claim costs while giving the injured worker time to heal. Utilizing our accredited, national network of nonprofit partners, we create innovative programs to help accommodate injured workers in the transition back to work. For more information, call 866-663-9880, visit www.ReEmployAbility.com or read our blog at www.transition2work.us
* Name has been changed.