Ivan: Work changed my life
“I am a hard-working man,” Ivan said. “Maybe because I am a Viking. My ancestors came from Norway.” As he talked about work, he said, “New Danville changed my life. Work changed my life.”
Work is not just about earning money, though Ivan admits a paycheck is pretty motivating. Work is about helping people, including yourself, he explained.
Ivan has worked at a variety of companies ranging from production, fast food, senior care and landscaping, among others. Working hard does not mean just working at a paying job, according to Ivan. He cites classes, particularly scrapbooking and woodshop, as places to work hard and to grow.
“I learned to be positive from my parents and from work,” Ivan explained. His job coach while he attended high school in Conroe taught him many things, too, he said. “She taught us to have a good attitude. Be on time. Be responsible and have good hygiene. The hardest part is showing up on time. I miss her and the school.” He graduated in 2004.
“I like to be busy,” Ivan emphasized as he described the various jobs he has held, the classes at New Danville that he loves and how he helps his family with lawn maintenance. “I am never bored at New Danville. I don’t like to be bored.”
Ivan hopes to someday be a resident in Meadowbrook, New Danville’s residential community. In the meantime, he enjoys all aspects of the rural environment and attending day program activities. Ivan says he learns by doing more so than just listening. “In work I learned a lot. I learned to help other people. I learned to help people with special needs.”