End-Dependence Kansas (EDK) is a program aimed at helping jobseekers diagnosed with IDD find competitive employment in the community. EDK uses a progressive, educational approach to employment that helps jobseekers develop work skills. Participants receive one-on-one training from employment specialists and participate in job shadows, company tours, and informational interviews to learn more about different work environment to help them find the right match. End-Dependence Kansas is a statewide program aimed at helping 2,000 Kansans with disabilities access employment. It is funded through a Kansas Department for Children and Families grant.
EDK partners with many different companies throughout Johnson County that allow jobseekers in our program to complete a work experience at their business. The EDK program is a risk-free way for employers to engage with positive, hardworking jobseekers and expand their community engagement.
The work experience is a 4-6 week internship-like experience where a jobseeker works for a company up to 20 hours a week for $8.25 an hour, at no cost to the employer. We also cover Workers' Compensation and liability insurance during the work experience.
The business does not have to hire the jobseeker after the work experience ends. However, if the business feels they would like to hire the jobseeker, they can extend an offer of employment at any time during the work experience. As an employer, you will get to engage with the community and “try out” employees before you investing in hiring them.
To become qualified, you must be over 18 and be diagnosed with an intellectual or developmental disability. You must be CDDO eligible, receiving services or currently on the IDD waiver. Jobseekers must become eligible through Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) and fill out a VR application.
You will benefit from a progressive, educational approach to employment. You will be able to learn valuable skills and try out a work experience to make sure it’s the right match of employment. You'll receive one-on-one job coaching and training support.
We want to thank our community partners in Johnson County who have hired or offered work experience to EDK participants:
Olathe Police Department
Hayes Tooling and Plastics
Overland Park Convention Center
Delmar Gardens of Lenexa
Turn Styles Thrift
Dillard’s Distribution Warehouse
½ of ½ clothing
Blessings Abound Thrift
Nova R Wealth, Inc
Dennis Family Dentistry
Santa Marta Retirement
Johnson County Fleet Services
Johnson County Sunflower Café
Johnson County Court Services
Good Samaritan Society
KC Joe’s BBQ
If you're a jobseeker or an employer and you would like more information about the program, please contact one of the employees below:
Community Employment Team Leader
Business Account Manager