VAC Spotlight on Rachel Payne from Didlake, Inc.
February 9, 2016
Didlake provides employment services for people with disabilites in the form of Individual Supported Employment, Group Supported Employment, Positive Behavior Support Services, Community Support Services, Benefits counseling, Day Support programs and AbiltyOne contract management. They are currently partners in two Project SEARCH programs in VA: Project SEARCH at Novant Health Prince William (Manassas) and Project SEARCH at Bon Secours Maryview Medical Center (Portsmouth, All ASD research site with VCU.) Didlake often collaborates and is interested in collaborating on new pilot projects that may run on grants where DARS is looking for an ESO partner to test the idea for a training model, new technology, etc.
Rachel Payne is currently a program manager with the supported employment program at Didlake. She manages the Greater Hampton Roads office, supervising employment specialists that serve GHRA and support Project SEARCH Maryview. She lives in Northern VA and works at the corporate office in Manassas where she works closely with the supported employment management team and provides support to staff in Northern VA as well. She says, she loves being a part of an organization that strives to create opportunities and enrich the lives of individuals with disabilities. Prior to being a program manager she was the onsite job coach for Project SEARCH at Maryview and also worked with the DARS autism pilot project providing customized assessments, community support services, and employment supports to young adults on the autism spectrum. One of the things she says she loves the most about her job is as a manager she is able to support and train staff from a management perspective and to assist in carrying out Didlake’s mission. Rachel says she is also lucky and enjoys the continued work she does with clients to help them build confidence and independence so they are able to obtain and maintain successful employment.