HAVING A JOB MATTERS

…especially for persons with disabilities and other barriers to employment.

Employment is a defining aspect of adult life.

It connects us to full participation in our communities.

Having a job fosters a sense of self-worth.

It opens opportunities for social growth and leads to greater independence.

Connecting our employees
to greater opportunities.
Working to build a stronger community.

Friendship Industries and Able Solutions share a common mission and purpose.

 

Founded in 1964, Friendship Industries was the first organization in our community to provide commercial work and training opportunities for persons with disabilities. Without realizing it, Friendship Industries became one of the first social enterprises in the Shenandoah Valley.

Through the years, Friendship Industries has responded to the changing needs of our community. In 2012 we formed Able Solutions, an affiliate non-profit organization to serve a wider range of our neighbors who face other barriers to workplace readiness. These barriers may include a lack of English-speaking/reading skills, attendance issues, and recovery from drug and alcohol addiction.

Friendship Industries and Able Solutions assist our employees with an innovative Pathways program and Personal Improvement Center (PIC), facilitating personal growth and greater independence. The packaging jobs coming through our doors are constantly changing, creating opportunities for cross-training and learning new skills. Our Employee Services team and crew leaders train our employees to work at different stations and on different tasks.

In addition to training on the production floor, our Pathways program and Personal Improvement Center connect our employees to other skills-

 

development resources and services. Safety training, computer skills, competency training and positive communication skills are taught through videos, reading, quizzes and other tools.

The Personal Improvement Center assists employees in reaching their personal goals by connecting them to local resources in our larger community, such as language classes, housing services, transportation options and food resources. When an employee is ready to move on from Friendship Industries / Able Solutions, they can use the PIC computers to look for other jobs and fill out job applications.

 

Our work is fueled by our social mission – Packaging with Purpose – transforming lives with jobs that open doors to a better future for our community neighbors facing obstacles to employment.

Connected to our Community and Beyond

Local  Leaders guide our Mission and Purpose

Friendship Industries
Board of Directors           2020-2021

OFFICERS

  • Marcy Engle, Chairman
  • Gary W. Shickel, Vice Chairman
  • Gary Calleo, Treasurer
  • Harry Reif, Secretary
  • Brian B. Shull, Immediate Past Chairman

DIRECTORS

  • Michele Bridges
  • Johnny Garber
  • Marlena Jarboe
  • Scott Pruett
  • Keith Robinson
  • Ken Rutherford
  • David Sharpe
  • Rebecca Simmons
  • Bill Wood
  • Marshall Yoder

Honorary board member:

  • Pablo Cuevas

Able Solutions
Board of Directors           2020-2021

OFFICERS

  • Marcy Engle, Chairman
  • Gary W. Shickel, Vice Chairman
  • Harry Reif , Treasurer
  • Gary Calleo, Secretary
  • Brian B. Shull, Immediate Past Chairman

 

Fueled by strong community leadership, support and advocacy of citizens in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County, we are making a positive difference in the lives of our local employees and our world-wide customers.

For the employees of Friendship Industries and our affiliate Able Solutions,
we are more than a workplace.

  • We are a place of learning and growth.

  • A place of connections to the resources of this community.

  • A place of second chances and reaching personal goals.

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