TOGETHER WE WORK
2012 Employment Conference
December 5th & 6th
Brooklyn Center, MN
WHEN COMMUNITIES WORK…WE ALL WORK!
The Third Statewide Disability and Employment Conference, “Together We Work”, sponsored by Minnesota APSE, Pathways to Employment, the Greater Twin Cities United Way, and the Minnesota Employment Training and Technical Assistance Center (MNTAT) was held in December 2012. We discovered ways to see and create abundance in an environment where resources seem scarce by rediscovering our communities and our connections to our communities.
In recent years a great deal of momentum has been building in MN and nationwide around new thinking, policies and practices aimed at addressing the incidence of poverty resulting from underemployment and unemployment that too many people with disabilities experience.
Pathways to Employment is the Minnesota Medicaid Infrastructure Grant from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. It has been successful at developing new infrastructure to better position our state to increase the competitive employment outcomes of people with disabilities. With the Pathways to Employment grant ending at the end of 2012 we are in a time of transition in Minnesota. This conference focused on bringing the community together to celebrate what has been developed and position people to build upon and sustain this work.
Together We Work was about strengthening our sense of connection and interdependence, and growing our ability to perceive abundance where we expected scarcity. It focused on the power of community and the impact that employment has in every aspect of a person’s life (housing, health, relationships, etc.) The format included presentations, table discussions, personal stories with an intergenerational focus as well as creative exercises to build dynamic community partnerships and facilitate actions that people can take, both individually and collectively.
This year we were pleased to feature Dr. Ernesto Sirolli, author of Ripples from the Zambezi: Passion, Entrepreneurship and the Rebirth of the Local Economy, and creator of Enterprise Facilitation. Dr. Sirolli spoke and shared stories illustrating what individuals and communities are capable of when they come together.