Rotary Employment Partnership

“What do you want to be when you grow up?”

This is a question virtually every parent asks their child. If you are a young person with developmental disabilities, however, the question isn’t as simple as it is for other young people, although it is just as important. People with developmental disabilities experience unemployment rates in excess of 70%.

Inclusion Alberta’s Rotary Employment Partnership is working to reverse this statistic. People with developmental disabilities want to and can work. They just need the right opportunity. Those opportunities are being provided by Rotarians who are opening the doors of their networks and their businesses to create meaningful jobs, making dreams come true.

Like everyone else, people with developmental disabilities have strengths, interests, talents, and abilities. Their talents and skills may surprise you as an employer. Inclusion Alberta and its community partners provide all the necessary assistance and follow-up to ensure success on the job.

To date, we have created over 630 meaningful jobs for adults with developmental disabilities with an average wage of more than $17.00 per hour. Worksites include a wide array of companies from one-person businesses to large international firms ranging from office jobs to manufacturing and technology.

With the success of the Rotary Employment Partnership in Alberta the idea has expanded to other Canadian provinces and a number of countries. This collaboration has also been recognized internationally as a world-leading innovation at the Zero Conference in Vienna, Austria by the ESSL Foundation in collaboration with the World Future Council and the International Labour Organization. The ESSL Foundation advocates for the rights of persons with disabilities internationally and a world with zero barriers.

Rotary Employment Partnership

The Partnership is a collaboration between Districts 5370 and 5360, Rotary Clubs, Inclusion Alberta and the Government of Alberta. The purpose of the Partnership is to create meaningful employment opportunities for people with developmental disabilities in association with business owners, employers and municipalities.

If you are an employer wondering if someone with a developmental disability could work in your business, consider the following:

  • Studies show that people with disabilities have lower absenteeism and stay with employers longer than their non-disabled counterparts
  • 60% of people with disabilities rated better in work safety than their non-disabled colleagues, with 78% lower costs related to workplace accidents
  • 90% of people with disabilities rated average or better on job performance a good indicator of their independence in the workplace



Rotary is an organization of business and professional leaders united worldwide, who provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and help build goodwill and peace in the world. There are approximately 1.2 million Rotarians, members of more than 35,000 Rotary clubs.

Inclusion Alberta

Inclusion Alberta is a family-based non-profit federation that advocates on behalf of children and adults with developmental disabilities and their families. Together, we share a dream of meaningful family life and community inclusion for individuals with developmental disabilities. As an advocacy organization we support families and individuals in their desire to be fully included in community life.

Government of Alberta

Provides the funding and support to assist adults with developmental disabilities to live, work and participate in their communities as valued citizens.

If you are interested in knowing how your workplace or Rotary Club can become involved, please contact:

Wendy McDonald, Rotarian, Inclusion Alberta Chief Operating Officer | 780-974-1310

Madeline Ouellette, Inclusion Alberta Provincial Director, Employment Partnerships | 587-340-7793

Download the Rotary brochure