Lauren Comly Fund
Beyond her unquestionable devotion to her family and friends, Lauren Comly’s kindness extended to her community, and to Challenge. She and her husband, Todd, have generously supported Challenge for many years, and it is our privilege to steward the Lauren Comly Fund for Youth Services, lovingly established by many of the people whose lives Lauren touched.
Among many things, Lauren is remembered for her love of photography, her passion for the arts, her enjoyment of the outdoors and her desire to enrich young people’s lives. It is our hope that the youth services that bear her name will develop meaningful life skills, build confidence and open doors of opportunity for hundreds of students with barriers.
Over 47 years of working with people with disabilities and employment barriers, we’ve learned that early support can have a huge impact on long-term success. With this in mind, we developed our Job Path to Success program, focused on helping students with physical, emotional, learning or language barriers build the skills and experience they need to be successful after graduation.
Students with barriers are seldom given the same early opportunities to gain work experience as their non-disabled peers; leaving them at a significant disadvantage when they enter the workforce. This program provides first-time paid employment in a supportive work setting. We know that earning a salary for the work they do increases the expectations and investment of the students.
Students are given hands-on training, guidance, and feedback, so that they complete this program having acquired the skills to successfully enter the workforce, compete for higher paying jobs, or continue their education after they graduate from high school.
Our Lauren Comly Fund supports every aspect of our youth services – from staffing, to student salaries. The growth of this fund enables us to reach more of our community’s students who would like to participate, and would greatly benefit from this program.
Our profound thanks to Lauren’s family, and to all of you who have given so generously to this fund in her honor.