Roland Porkpah has been working proudly as a staff member for JRC for 24 years and currently works as a Case Manager. Porkpah works closely with 24 individuals, serving as their guardian in the absence of their respected family members and guardians.
For instance, if a client needs medical care, Roland’s responsibilities involve ensuring that their care and treatment is followed up on. Additionally, he keeps the client’s respected guardians up to date on the latest information regarding their health and behavioral status as well as answering any questions they may have and being an overall sounding board for their concerns and ideas.
Just like with many other staff members, Roland did not envision staying with JRC long term. “When I first started, I thought I was going to pass through actually because I had different goals,” he explains.
But he quickly found his family and is grateful to have worked together with his colleagues and both students and adults for more than two decades.
Calling JRC a “family,” many employees have worked together for years and even decades, establishing a foundation and friendship.
Roland believes that every day is a learning process and establishing trust and acceptance with clients and students is a key to success. “There’s always going to be a challenge, but the goal is to work with (them) and not give up on (them),” he says.
Roland also welcomes feedback from parents and guardians.
“It lets you know that all of us, including parents, are all part of a team and they want to see the best for this individual,” he says with a smile.
JRC staff members measure a client’s success on an individual basis.
Roland says bringing clients back home to their families is often a major milestone. “It may be something that we take for granted because we are always home with our families, but for them, it signals a huge improvement in the individual’s quality of life.”
Working at JRC comes with certain challenges. “There are a lot of serious behavioral presentations that folks we serve bring onto us,” Roland explains. “Your ability to remain calm and overcome (challenges) makes you successful at what you do.”
But Roland says the rewards of working are many and he encourages more people to explore a career with JRC. “The place is pretty dynamic. It’s a place where there’s growth for new people coming in,” he adds. “There’s creativity with all coming in.”