Chamber Chat – Family Promise of Lee County receives recognition

November 22, 2020 | Written by: sanford-user

By Meg Moss

October was National Disability Employment Awareness Month. It’s not surprising that a Lee County business was recognized as the Employer of the Year by the North Carolina Rehabilitation Association. According to NCRA’s Constitution, their goal is to “advance the rehabilitation of all persons with disabilities”. Family Promise’s recognition was for “Inclusive Hiring for small businesses”.

“The Family Promise of Lee County Executive Director, Tamara Brogan, is a passionate, energetic leader of human services specialists, and is recognized in the community for her amazing problem solving and collaboration skills,” said Deanna Jones, Business Relations Representative for NC Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services. “She was eager from day one to partner with our agency to provide on-the-job work experiences for individuals with disabilities. I have lost count on how many of our clients she has graciously invited to shadow her, volunteer, intern and train with her team.”

Family Promise is a nonprofit organization that assists families experiencing homelessness in Lee County. Family Promise has made sure that their parking area, entrance and interior designs of their location is accessible to all guests and employees, and they have worked hard to ensure an inclusive workforce.

Family Promise has also shown great commitment to considering job applicants’ abilities, and they provide job accommodations if needed. “Sybil Smith serves as the Project Assistant at Family Promise, and is just one example of the diverse staff at the nonprofit. Smith uses a wheelchair for mobility, and is an effective part of the team” stated Jones during the virtual awards presentation.

Jones shared that “individuals with disabilities continue to be the most under-utilized target group for employment. In 2019, less than 20% of persons with a disability were employed compared to over 66% of persons without a disability (according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Many individuals with disabilities are able and available to work, but are often overlooked. The NC Rehabilitation Association and NC Vocational Rehabilitation are available to assist businesses with recruiting, training and hiring applicants with disabilities.” For more information, please contact the local Vocational Rehabilitation office at 919-775-2247 or email