Originally created 11/10/05

Easter Seals has national certification



The Easter Seals of East Georgia last month became one of the first nonprofit organizations to be awarded the custodial service certification.

The certification, which was established by the National Industries for the Severely Handicapped at the request of the Government Services Administration, soon will be required of all nonprofit organizations that possess, or wish to possess, governmental contracts.

"Now that we have our certification and meet the government's requirements, we're hoping that this will result in more government contracts," said Norm Dube, the custodial supervisor at Easter Seals of East Georgia. "We're hoping that this, in turn, will result in more jobs for people with disabilities."

National Industries, which assists certain nonprofit organizations to win government contracts, looks at a number of factors, including the nonprofit's planning, documentation, and regulatory compliance, to determine whether the group is suitable for certification. Mr. Dube said he believes that the quality of his organization's training program, and their documentation procedures, are what set them above the rest.

"In our case, we're in a good position because, for our size, we have documental procedures that they would expect of a larger organization," Mr. Dube said. "The larger the organization, the more formalized NISH expects the documents to be."

Easter Seals East Georgia evaluates people with disabilities and places them in jobs they are best suited for. In custodial services, many times these positions are in government facilities. According to Mr. Dube, this makes the government contracts an essential part of finding work for these people.

"We'll have more flexibility and we'll have places to put people until we can find them work in the outside world," Mr. Dube said.

For more information about the Easter Seals East Georgia, call (866) 667-9695.

Reach Adam Folk at (706) 828-3904 or adam.folk@augustachronicle.com.