Derby Day, in which participants at the Pickwick Banquet Center can
bet on the Kentucky Derby, helps generate much of the association's
But the Self-Aid Workshop helps its roughly 57 employees raise money
via a more mainstream method: by working for a living.
In the workshop on a recent afternoon, most of the employees, who have
developmental disabilities of various kinds, were at work putting
together stacks of flattened newspaper.
The stacks, when they are compressed, can be used for packing material
or for other purposes. Employees are paid on a piecework basis for these
and other projects, and earn between 10 cents and $2 for each piece
produced, depending on the complexity of the work.
It's not always very much money, but Carole Jouroyan, executive
director of the workshop, said the benefits for both employees and the
people buying the products go beyond the merely financial.
"It's just the idea that all of us like to get up in the morning and
know we have a place to go and something to do," she said. "It gives them
an identity and a sense of adding to the environment, of being part of
The workshop has been around since 1954, although it was originally a
school rather than a workplace. These days, clients such as Nestle,
Charter Communications and Glendale Adventist Medical Center use its
"They've always done a great job for us," said Rachel Clark, a
recruiting coordinator for Nestle. The company uses the services of the
workshop employees to assemble goody bags used in promotional efforts.
For Nestle, Clark said, contracting with the workshop was a good ethical
decision as well as a smart business move.
"It's part of our extension into the community," she said.
The Self-Aid Workshop is at 6512 San Fernando Road. For more
information, call 242-2434.