VR3: Making a Difference
VR3  Ready...Reliable...Results May 2013

New employee saves coworker’s life
“Everyone is family here”

Just one month after being hired as a Job Coach at the SCVRD Berkeley-Dorchester office in Moncks Corner, Kevin Patterson walked out of his office and saw a crowd of people gathered and heard a scream. Renita Smith, Vocational Assessment and Career Exploration Specialist, had collapsed.

The Berkeley-Dorchester staff immediately sprang into action. Patterson used his advanced skills as a former combat medic, using a pen to get her breathing again.

Numerous staff members were instrumental in the lifesaving efforts, working together to save their colleague and friend, and a client stepped in to help too.

Noting the great team effort and that area supervisor Kelly Sieling “did not leave my side,” Smith stated, “I cannot thank my VR family enough for the role that they played in saving my life.”

Read the full story at The Post & Courier

Watch the video at ABC News 4 (requires the latest version of the Adobe Flash Player)

Note: The text story accompanying the ABC News 4 link inaccurately states that Trident Medical Center purchased the AED that was used at the Berkeley-Dorchester office. The device was purchased and installed by SCVRD.

Around the state

DDS shows its PRIDE

Disability Determination Services (DDS) held its annual PRIDE banquet on April 11. DDS staff from around the state were recognized for their outstanding achievements over the past year.

“We are very fortunate to have had such stellar performers in FY 2011-12,” says Shirley Jarrett, DDS Director. “All of the nominees were well-deserving. We consider ourselves fortunate indeed to have such highly qualified individuals as our 2012 nominees.”

“I always enjoy the PRIDE awards,” says Barbara Hollis, SCVRD Commissioner. “They highlight the impressive work of our DDS staff and the recipients exemplify excellence in service to claimants and to our agency.”

Congratulations to the following individuals and group winners of the SC DDS 2012 PRIDE awards!

   Office of State Claims Excellence Award
   Lauren Northcutt

   Staff Person of the Year
   K.C. Dangerfield

   Case Processing Supervisor of the Year
   Nena Vincent

   Support Person of the Year
   Zarita Blythe

   Examiner of the Year
   Camillo Bianco

   Staff Supervisor of the Year
   Susan Vlahos

   Medical Consultant of the Year
   Dr. Rebecca Meriwether

   Robert R. Hinrichs Humanitarian Award
   Dr. Lindsey Crumlin

   Mary Simmons Special Acts of Service Award
   K.C. Dangerfield, SC representative to the Atlanta Regional PRIDE;
   Dr. Manhal Wieland

   Thomas M. Leahy Creative Achievement Award
   The Greenville Regional Office

March Madness hits Beaufort

Concurrent with the NCAA March Madness, Gregg Gilbert, Beaufort Area Supervisor, decided to have a friendly office competition and host his own March Madness. Gilbert served as the league commissioner, two staff members acted as league officials and remaining staff joined together to form five teams competing to see which could achieve the most successful outcomes. Each team consisted of at least three members and had a team name and mascot.

The competition involved rigorous JPI classes, a well-planned job fair, and intensive client placement efforts.

On the last day of the tournament, “stadium food” was served and winners were presented with “hand made” trophies.

The winning team was the Chanticleers with seven successful employment outcomes.

The Chanticleers. (l to r) Melissa Weber, Heather Steele, and Carmen Pirtle.

As a result of the March Madness event, 14 clients benefited from successful employment outcomes, others began on the job trainings, and 10 had interviews scheduled in the following weeks.

Did you know...

…that the homemade prosthetic leg of a former SCVRD client was on display at the Smithsonian Institution for a decade?

The Upstate man invented the leg from scraps of metal, chain, barbed wire, nuts and bolts, and cloth. It weighed 20 pounds and it served him well for 15 years while he worked as a farmer prior to his referral to SCVRD in 1962. The agency, working with Greenville General Hospital's amputee clinic, replaced the device with a modern prosthesis and the client went to work in the construction business.

The Smithsonian displayed this incredible device from 1973 to 1983 in an exhibit about rehabilitative medicine. It is now on display at the USC School of Medicine library in Greenville.

Story source: Greenville Tribune-Times newspaper, July 11, 1973
Photos: S.C. Farm Bureau Federation, April 2013


May 21, 3:30pm - South Carolina Legal Services will conduct Expungement classes for clients needing this service.
  For more information, call 803-432-1068 or 866-206-5280
May 17 - 12pm-2pm -The South Carolina Governor’s Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities will honor one small, medium and large SC business for their exemplary practices in hiring and providing leadership in utilizing the abilities that people with disabilities have to offer at the SC Department of Archives & History, 8301 Parklane Road, Columbia, SC.
July 16-18 - The SC Youth Leadership Forum (YLF), an annual career leadership program for high school juniors and seniors (or high school students between the ages of 17-21) with disabilities who have leadership aspirations in both their school and community, returns to Newberry College and the Wil Lou Gray Opportunity School. Students will enhance and grow their leadership, citizenship and social skills while taking part in activities enabling them to network, learn from each other and build lasting friendships. Get more information at ylf.scvrd.net.
July 12, 8am-4pm - SC Brain Injury Alliance Conference at the Columbia Conference Center, 169 Laurelhurst Avenue, Columbia, SC. Get more information from the Brain Injury Association of South Carolina.

Enabling eligible South Carolinians with disabilities to prepare for, achieve and maintain competitive employment

VR3 is published by the South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Department (SCVRD), 1410 Boston Avenue, West Columbia, SC 29171.
The Public Information Office provides all news and information. News material may be reproduced with credit to VR3. In accordance with federal and state laws, SCVRD does not discriminate against any race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or disability in employment or in provision of services.