As an Inclusion Assistant, Darren is helping to break down barriers, serving kids and their families
An unexpected career pivot opened new possibilities and an exciting future for Darren Hicks, not to mention one that is rewarding and barrier busting. He is an Inclusion Assistant with Tualatin Hills Parks and Recreation and utilizes his skills and positive attributes to make a difference in the lives of young kids experiencing disabilities.
Darren was referred to Dirkse Counseling and Consulting after participating in a vocational program with the Oregon Commission for the Blind. Although initially pursuing a position in tech, his Job Developer encouraged him to “cast a wide net” and thought he would be a good fit for THPRD. He was initially hired for the summer camp program and is now retained as a Preschool Inclusion Assistant at the Nature Center.
Being a part of a supportive team that includes preschool teachers, therapists, and parents has given him a sense of inclusion too, while providing support for the youngest of students who just want to experience life like everyone else.
Jared Grafenauer, THPRD Inclusion Specialist shared this:
“Darren’s positive attitude and desire to learn are standout examples of why he is a valued member of the Inclusion team here at THPRD. His work as an Inclusion Assistant is crucial for kids experiencing disabilities to have the support they need to be successful in recreation programs. Darren works collaboratively with program staff to create an inclusive environment for everyone, which plays a huge part in breaking down barriers for the kids we serve and their families.”
By Kristi Metschan. For more info about our mission & programs, call Glenn Bishop: (503)-265-9256 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.