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Southwest Iowa organization supports people with disabilities

Posted at 6:29 PM, Aug 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-04 19:29:23-04

GLENWOOD, Iowa. (KMTV) - Nishna Productions helps people with disabilities find a job while also providing emotional support. One Glenwood man is thriving thanks to their help.

Aaron Conoan lives in Glenwood and has faced a lot of struggle.

"I'm a slow learner, that's what they say, and when I was born, I couldn't hear out one of my ears, so they told me I was a slow learner," Conoan said.

His upbringing also had challenges.

"My mom couldn't afford me. She was an alcoholic and she didn't know how to take care of herself," Conoan said.

He mostly grew up in foster care until getting adopted.

"It was kind of rough sometimes but you have to manage it," Conoan said.

Conoan got introduced to Nishna Productions, an organization supporting people with disabilities. Julie McQueen, a community employment specialist, says he needed guidance.

"When Aaron came to us, he was in trouble. He really had no clue what he wanted to do with his life. He struggled with just a little bit of everything," McQueen said.

But it turns out all he needed was a little push.

"We helped him find his skills like we do with everybody. We helped him find a job that was really going to suit him," McQueen said.

Conoan has worked at a McDonald's for 11 years and he's thriving.

"I'm gonna work mostly until I can't work anymore," Conoan said.

McQueen says if you meet Conoan, you'll see a man not defined by limitations or disability.

"If a person would just take the time to see the skills of the individuals we work with, the assistance they have, support they have," McQueen said.

And it turns out, Conoan says, there's a lot we can take away from listening and learning from him.

"They need to look past the boundaries and think, 'He had a bad past, now he's gotten better, he's learned from his past," Conoan said.

For more information on Nishna Productions, click here..