Bridges Summer 2024 Update

July 3, 2024

Bridges Participants in the Spotlight

Aramark Hires Champions

Twenty-five-year-old Cameron of Plano, Texas, is a champion, whether he’s feeding a hungry lunch crowd or competing in a Special Olympics swim meet.

Cameron, pictured here and with his co-workers below, has worked full-time for 18 months in the Capital One cafeteria managed by Aramark, where his co-workers, along with his Bridges employment specialist Cassandra Poole, are always cheering him on.

A Culinary Work Anniversary

A graduate of Moises Molina High School, Pedro, 20, has already surpassed his one-year anniversary at the Dallas Renaissance Hotel, where he works fulltime as a prep cook.

Renaissance Human Resources Manager Bllanca Barbosa says “Pedro is an absolute pleasure to work with. He is so sweet and kind and loves learning new culinary techniques. He even helps us recruit and has referred multiple people to apply for our openings.”


A Grandmother’s Email


In March 2024, Bridges Executive Director Tad Asbury received an email from the grandmother of an Atlanta Bridges participant.

The grandmother, visiting from Rhode Island, was impressed by the relationship that Atlanta Bridges Employment Specialist Dominique Siler (right) had forged with her granddaughter, Kyla (left), a student at Midtown High School.

You can read an excerpt from the email below.

“Bridges’ employment specialist Ms. Dominique Siler found the perfect job match for Kyla, one that has transformed her from a shy young lady to one who takes on leadership roles. Ms. Siler cares about the needs of the students and is there to assure them that they are capable of success.

I returned from Atlanta to Rhode Island feeling so blessed that my granddaughter has such a professional in her life, and I just had to share my thoughts with Bridges.”


Grandmother in Richmond, Rhode Island

Supporter Recognition

Pinkerton Foundation Logo

With three years of support from The Pinkerton Foundation, Bridges of New York City has expanded its reach to include youth aging out of the foster care system, helping them find career-oriented jobs that will promote their independence and self-sufficiency. The Foundation prioritizes direct service programs that help young people reach their full potential.

Butler Foundation Logo

The J. E. and Z. B Butler Foundation has supported our New York City Bridges program for four years. The Foundation aspires to create a more accepting world in which people of all abilities are understood, valued, and respected.

Taft Foundation Logo

We are deeply grateful to The Taft Foundation for its third consecutive grant award supporting our work in New York City. The Foundation’s mission is to support individuals in New York and Florida with intellectual and developmental disabilities and children facing serious illness.

Hearst Foundations Logo

We recognize and thank the Hearst Foundations for supporting our work in Chicago. The mission of the Hearst Foundations is to identify and fund outstanding nonprofits to ensure that people of all backgrounds in the United States can build healthy, productive and satisfying lives.

2024 Bridges Gala

Ky Say

On the evening of Tuesday, May 28th, Bridges Board Chair Richard E. Marriott (right) welcomed more than 1,000 guests to the Marriott Marquis in Washington, D.C., for our 2024 Bridges Gala. We raised over $2,260,000 in support of Bridges from School to Work.

Bridges alumna Ku Say of Chicago (right, center) received the Stephen G. Marriott Youth Achievement Award. You can meet Ku and hear her Bridges story in the video below. Actress and Tony Award winner Ali Stroker (left, center) entertained us with her Broadway vocal talents and her inspiring message about “turning limitations into opportunities.”

The evening’s record-setting donations were also due in large part to our 2024 Bridges Gala Co-Chair, Joe Ucuzoglu, Deloitte Global CEO, (left) and his call to action: We need to harness the power of employers to help young adults with disabilities realize their career aspirations.


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