Happy New Year!
Thanks for the Support!
Thanks to the support of a myriad of local businesses, donors, volunteers, and a committed team of staff, 2015 was a wonderful year for Citizens Development Center (CDC) and the 526 people with disabilities we served! Your commitment and belief in our organization enabled our clients to cherish the opportunity to gain purpose and dignity through employment and take great pride in the work performed, the money they earned and the skills they developed. In 2015, we had so many wonderful stories of success that exemplified the value of your support. Sharing these stories with you is an important way to keep you informed and truly illustrates how you make a difference.  Of course respecting confidentiality is of great importance, so the name of the client highlighted in the following story has been changed, yet the value of his accomplishment cannot be ignored and is truly inspiring.  I hope you enjoy reading his story and, once again, thank you for helping us make dreams can come true for the clients and families we serve! 


Executive Director
Citizens Development Center



John has a Master's degree and speaks two languages, certainly assets that make a difference in today's job market. Yet temporary and low wage employment were the only options available to him. Why? Because John is stereotyped as having limited capabilities because he is a person with disabilities. When John came to CDC, like so many our clients, his confidence was at an all-time low. 
At CDC, we recognize that people with disabilities live in a society where their ways of thinking, communicating, moving, and simply being are not always accepted and understood.  Individuals with disabilities are often met with social barriers that make it more difficult for them to find rewarding employment.
However, at CDC, John worked alongside committed staff who provided encouragement and reassurance as well as a compassionate listening ear when he needed to vent his frustrations. John also took advantage of some of CDC's resources and services including interview training, resume creation, and job leads. As a result, John secured a position processing government documents at a mail sorting center for $15.02 an hour.
John says that he has found "the perfect job," where he feels satisfied with both his salary and sense of accomplishment. He is delighted to go to work each day, and he cannot say enough good things about  how fortunate he feels  to get exactly the kind of job he envisioned for himself. 
John's story is only one of a host of other clients who have used the CDC to not only gain employment, but to also build lasting and fruitful relationships.

Special thanks to the Real Estate Associate Leadership Council 2016 Class for providing support for the much needed renovation of the CDC garden and front entry of the Center.  We are also extremely grateful to the Texas Veterans Commission for doubling their support from last year to assist our Veterans with disabilities find employment.

Crystal Spoons
Welcome new employment staff member Crystal Spoons!  She comes to CDC with six years of experience placing adults with disabilities in jobs.

CDC also brought on two new board members:
Kim Milazzotto, Vice President, Dallas Regional Hospital and Stan Spitler, retired Army Officer and rancher.

Dallas Regional Medical Hospital Party
Pizza, drinks and Santa hats were given to the clients at the party sponsored by Dallas Regional Medical Hospital!   10-15 hospital staff came to distribute the food and hats to the clients that put a smile on everyone's face!    
Client Christmas Party
The 165 hard working adults with disabilities in the Work Center attended their Annual Christmas Party mid December!  They all came in holiday attire, with hats, sweaters, antlers, and noise makers to enjoy a meal, music and a photo with Santa and Mrs. Claus.   

Ten staff from KPMG's technical department came to host bingo games and provided prizes for the clients.  You could feel the excitement in the room each time the shout came out "bingo".   
Citizens Development Center Client Choir Performance
Over 60 adults with disabilities sang traditional Christmas carols in the Work Center for family and friends.   It was a festive time for all!  Choir was lead by two volunteers David and Dell Anne Patterson.   
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