When Stanley Cousins, Regional Manager at LFSVA’s Danville office, tried to think of a local business that might hire an adult with disabilities, one idea came to mind pretty quickly.
Stanley’s son, James Cousins, owns the Abe Koplen Clothing store in downtown Danville. James met with Bryce Viernes, who is hearing impaired and receives in-home services from LFSVA, along with Bryce’s interpreter, Marilyn Foss with Liberty University Interpreting Services, and his job coach, Erin Fowler with Rehabilitative Services and Vocational Placement, Inc.
Soon enough, Bryce was hired.
It’s a perfect fit, Stanley Cousins says, in part because Bryce knows clothes.
“He’s a fashionista,” Stanley says.
“I like to look good,” says Bryce.
Bryce works one day a week at the 117-year-old business, stacking shelves, folding clothes, vacuuming, and helping with inventory.
James is happy with Bryce’s work.
“Bryce is a hard worker, very friendly. He does what he is asked and sometimes will do things without being asked. He also loves to laugh too.”
Bryce says his favorite part of the job is organizing the shirts and colors by sizes. He also likes getting paid. What did he do with his first paycheck?
“I went bowling and to a restaurant.”
Bryce’s future goal is to work more hours and add an additional day to his work schedule.
Photos courtesy of James Cousins