ETS Career Services
Forum House - Program Overview:
Forum House provides adults who have been socially and vocationally disabled by mental illness the opportunity to gain confidence and self-esteem, learn vocational skills, and obtain employment. The "Clubhouse" model, which was developed over a half century ago, provides members with a supportive environment where they can get assistance with transitioning into the workplace or back into school as well as increasing their participation in the community. Membership is voluntary and services are designed to meet individual needs.
Members make the club come alive by working with staff to operate the clubhouse, ensure that all feel wanted, and that everyone has the opportunity to contribute to the community through meaningful work. Forum House provides several specialized units (see below) that members use to manage the club's activities as well as to learn and master critical vocational skills. This approach ensures cooperation, inclusion, and shared responsibility. It also allows each member to be productive despite his or her disability.
Forum House is designed to help members transfer the skills and capabilities learned at the clubhouse to real jobs in the community. Each member receives a comprehensive vocational assessment that identifies training and job placement priorities as well as preferences. Members are also provided with career counseling, interview skills training, resume writing, and job search assistance as needed.
Once a member is placed in a Transitional or Competitive Employment Job, clubhouse staff continues to provide ongoing support for work related and personal issues. Transitional Employment Jobs are generally structured to be temporary. The goal, in most cases, is to allow the member to move onto Independent Employment after a specified period. Members seeking Competitive Employment Jobs are more experienced and have worked in a Transitional Employment position.
Forum House - Program Highlights:
- Established in 1988
- Serving Greater Westfield
- Providing a restorative environment to over 300 members
- Offering specialized units including: business, employment, education, food services, and membership services
- Working in partnership with area employers to meet their business needs while opening up employment opportunities for its program members
55 Broad Street
Westfield, MA 01085
Phone: (413) 562-5293
Fax: (413) 562-9163
Read the Forum House Brochure (.pdf)