Vocational Rehabilitation Program
Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) is a federal and state-funded program providing services to help individuals with disabilities enter or return to employment. It is designed to assist individuals of work age to gain employment in integrated settings. Through counseling and guidance provided by a vocational rehabilitation counselor, individuals are assisted in choosing appropriate vocational goals. Services are then provided to assist those individuals in obtaining and maintaining employment.
To be eligible for the Vocational Rehabilitation Program, a person must meet specific guidelines related to a physical or mental disability that results in a substantial barrier to employment. These guidelines are 1) there must be a disability that constitutes or results in a substantial impediment to employment 2) the individual must require vocational rehabilitation services to prepare for, secure, retain, or regain employment 3) the individual can benefit from vocational rehabilitation services in terms of an employment outcome. The Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor determines eligibility with the help of existing information, medical examinations, psychological examinations, and other assessments secured by VR to determine the nature and extent of the disability. Applicants who receive SSI (Supplemental Security Income) or SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance) benefits based on their own disability or blindness are presumed to be eligible if they intend to go to work. Vocational Rehabilitation Services are only available to those individuals who are determined eligible and who want to go to work. The Transition School to Work (TSW) program is designed to assist students with disabilities with the transition from school to the world of work. The Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor can provide consultant services in Individualized Education Plan (IEP) meetings as early as age fourteen (14). The Rehabilitation Training Center at Smyrna as well as 17 Community Rehabilitation Centers around the state are used to provide training services and assessments to individuals with disabilities.
How to get started
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