It has been a memorable Spring for Maurice Vanness, who resides in one of Living Resources residential homes and receives supported employment coaching. Working with his employment Coach, Maurice has been a valued employee of Hannaford Supermarket on Wolf Road for nearly 20 years. During his time with Hannaford, he learned to navigate and manage his commute utilizing the Star bus system, plan his daily activities, and accomplish his many job related challenges. This year certainly presented Maurice with challenges like no other.

In order for Maurice to continue to work at Hannaford, he had to agree to strict guidelines at the store and at his house. He is required to wear a mask at all times “while on the floor” at work. When he gathers carts, he wears gloves. When Maurice returns home at the end of his day, he must remove his clothes, put them directly into the laundry and shower immediately to keep himself, housemates, and staff healthy and safe. These are all “the new norm” and he, like all of us in this pandemic are getting accustomed to new ways to work, remain safe, and journey through each day.

Lori Ira, a Living Resources Employment Specialist, has worked with Maurice for five years. Lori states, “Maurice loves his job and it shows in his commitment to this job each day.” According to his Hannaford manager Candy Collins, “Maurice will do anything we ask and is always reliable.”

Maurice’s house manager Anthony has also been instrumental in Maurice’s success and continues to support Maurice at his home, navigating the new guidelines he must adhere to.  A variety of communications within Maurice’s team, including his family advocate Rhonda, have ensured a smooth transition. While change can be daunting, Maurice has navigated this new normal with vigor in order to ensure the health of those around him.

We look forward to Maurice continuing to maintain his independence and negotiating this new norm and new world of employment!