About Us

Working with disabilitiesCAVEWAS is a national, professional association offering a variety of services to a diverse group of professionals and stakeholders assisting people with disabilities and / or disadvantages to enter, remain in or return to work and / or meaningful engagement within their communities. We work together to build awareness of ability, helping individuals realize their personal potential and employment goals. CAVEWAS is the only specialty Society under the umbrella of the Vocational Rehabilitation Association of Canada.

Vocational Rehabilitation is a highly sophisticated profession, grounded by a belief in the dignity and worth of all people and delivered by experts requiring unique multidisciplinary skills, experience, education and training who assist persons with functional, psychological, developmental, cognitive and emotional impairments and health conditions to overcome barriers to accessing, maintaining or returning to employment, to a position in the community and / or to quality of life. Vocational Rehabilitation is a dynamic process consisting of a series of actions and activities that follow a logical, sequential progression of services related to the total needs of a person with a disability or disadvantage. The process begins with a referral and ends with the successful placement of the individual in employment.

CAVEWAS is dedicated to promoting Vocational Assessment, Vocational Evaluation, Work Adjustment and Job Development / Placement services as a defined discipline within Human Resources, Disability Management, Employment Services, and Vocational Rehabilitation.

Vocational Assessment is the process of identifying and appraising an individual's level of functioning in relation to vocational preparation, employment selection and career decision making.

Following injury or the onset of physical or mental health problems affecting vocational performance, many individuals receive vocational rehabilitation services to identify possible vocational options and to learn how to perform successfully in specific work roles. Assessment is often an important part of such services. Vocational rehabilitation specialists seek to determine the nature of the client's interests, (remaining) functional abilities, and coping resources.

People often do not have precise occupational goals and aspirations. They frequently have insufficient or inaccurate information about the labour market and limited self-knowledge of their own interests and abilities. Vocational Assessment is the process of identifying and appraising an individual's level of functioning in relation to vocational preparation and employment decision making.

Vocational Evaluation is a comprehensive process which assists individuals with employment challenges to learn more about their abilities, skills, talents, interests and potential and how these characteristics can correspond to the labour market. The end result of such a process is the identification of realistic employment and career goals, and the creation of a road-map of how the individual can achieve them.
Work Adjustment is a transitional, time-limited, systematic training program which helps people achieve their optimal level of vocational development. Utilizing real or simulated work, the intent of the program is to assist persons to understand the meaning, value, and demands of work; to learn or re-establish skills, attitudes, personal characteristics, work behaviours, to develop functional abilities and tolerance for work. Work adjustment is not a one-time service but is a part of a process or continuum.
Employment Services – Individuals working in employment services may hold the designations of Registered Vocational Professional (RVP) or Registered Community Support Specialist (RCSS), as is awarded by CAVEWAS and the VRA. They are employed as career developers, human resource specialists, disability managers, employment counselors, job coaches, work adjustment practitioners, job developers, job placement specialists, return to work specialists, etc. These professionals provide direct services and supports to persons with impairment, disability or disadvantage in order to foster achievement of the individual's vocational goals in the most integrated setting possible. This can be with their old employer, current employer or new employer.
Job Development / Placement Services is intended to find employers who will provide positions within their environment for purposes of training and coaching new recruits and matching clients with disability and / or disadvantage to jobs. The services incorporate a number of strategies and techniques to ensure for the best possible chance of safe and sustainable employment outcomes.