Community Employment

Welcome to Community Employment services at CVII. Our full-time staff are a dedicated team of employees with a combined total of over 55 years of experience. If you're interested in receiving any of the following Community Employment services from us contact Kim Brand at 704-471-0606 or via email.


The following customized services geared for community placement are vocationally oriented using real work in an integrated work environment to develop employment skills. All participants are paid for the work that they do while in training.

  • Driver Education Classes
  • Self Esteem/Motivation
  • Job Club
  • Job Sampling
  • Job Shadowing
  • Job Placement
  • Jalopies for Jobs









An evaluation can help determine a person's vocational potential, career interests, vocational readiness for training, and job recommendations. We combine background information and the ability to perform in a work setting along with the results of a vocational testing tool. A plan is then developed based upon that information. This plan helps guide the person in choosing a career and defines the necessary skills to accomplish a meaningful employment objective. This evaluation can be performed using the following techniques:



With this type of evaluation a person's attendance, stamina, ability to work with others, ability to learn and/or retain information, direction following skills and training or supports needed for successful employment can be observed on a day to day basis. We use this information plus consumer background, results of work samples and the vocational testing along with consumer input to help determine the next step in one's employment plan.



Depending on the individuals needs, the evaluation may be performed entirely in the community. This assessment utilizes some of the same techniques as the Vocational Evaluation. This helps to determine the vocational strengths and needs while a person is performing job related duties and/or actual work with the assistance of a placement specialist. We may also use our mobile testing tool for more formalized testing data. Information from this on-site assessment will be used to help determine an appropriate placement service and a job that matches one's abilities and interests.



This placement service provides consumers with an opportunity to access a structured work environment before transitioning to employment. At CVII, one has the opportunity to develop or enhance work skills, increase stamina, develop work history, learn job seeking skills such as how to interview, fill out applications, secure transportation, and learn how earned income affects monthly benefits. If needed, they will be scheduled for job sampling in the community so that they can learn the job requirements and/or responsibilities of their chosen career. Additionally, they may learn that they need more scholastic training before attempting employment. This information can be crucial to their future success. When ready we may provide assistance with transportation to apply for jobs. Furthermore, we may accompany them on job interviews and assisted with securing transportation. When employment is found, a trainer may or may not accompany a person when placed, depending upon their individual needs.



A referral for this service usually means that a person is ready for work, the work site may already be identified and that the person needs assistance with on-the-job training. Pertinent information has previously been obtained either by the referring agency, a community based assessment, or through the school system. This is also a community based service.



In 1986 Cleveland Vocational became one of the first agencies to offer Supported Employment Job Coach services in North Carolina. This service offers placements for consumers that require a longer training period. An integral part of Supported Employment is the long-term follow-along contact with the consumer and the employer. Also, if the person's job duties change, the job coach can return to the work site for additional training.



This community based service allows a small group of individuals to work within a company with a CVII supervisor. For many people, this can be an effective transition between the more intense training programs and community employment.


Most of our referrals are through the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation, but we continue to receive referrals from other agencies such as: WIA, Work First, Cleveland County School System, and our newest source SSA - the Ticket To Work Program. Our Community Employment services include Vocational Evaluation and Placement Services as described above.


Why We Started

What is the first question a person asks you after they ask your name? Usually it's "where do you work?" or "what do you do?" That person wants to know, in effect, how you fit in the community and what you do to contribute to the community. We have found that all people have the desire to earn for themselves and give back to their community. When we started providing services we learned that lesson early from the people we were serving. Adding work training and paid work helped us build employable skills in people we were serving. One year later in 1986 we sought funds from Cleveland County United Way to develop job coaching services. The grant was awarded and our first job placement was successful. CVII's Community Employment program was one of the first programs in North Carolina to offer job coaching services.