Mainstream Living

Enclaves (The Center)

The Center offers several kinds of services, one of which includes employment opportunities for members. Mainstream Living has shifted the focus of the employment program over the years from employing members who worked directly in Center’s workshop, to job coaching to contracting directly with DanFoss and Hach, where members go to work each day. Mainstream Living serves as the contractor for these companies and employs members through our own ‘Workstream’ company. Workstream operates the same as Mainstream Living when it comes to employment needs. Members can access payroll information and coordinate direct deposits versus paper checks as preferred for example. All members are paid minimum wage or better and pay taxes as required. 

The enclaves consist of a small group of members working at a location under the guidance and supervision of our enclave supervisors. There are typically six members to every supervisor. This is a unique opportunity for members as they get to work closely with their peers, other employees from the companies and our supervisors to gain useful and needed job skills. Mainstream Living’s Integration Coordinator, Steve Gehlsen, says, "Working and learning at an enclave gives people the opportunity to learn actual work skills and the soft skills required to work at a community based job while still being closely supervised. The skills that are learned will help make the transition into the work world outside the enclave much easier and hopefully successful."

For some members, the enclaves may be the first place they have been employed. Members are able to develop such skills as arriving to work on time, being dressed appropriately, having needed items available (badges to get into the building, proper safety equipment, etc), meeting deadlines, working well with others and following instructions from supervisors. These skills are valuable and much needed when seeking employment in the community.

Currently, Center serves 37 members in the enclave program and employs three full time enclave supervisors, Jeff Franklin, Billy Kearney, and Kent Meier, and currently, one-part time position, Edward Morris. Sheryl Fuss also works PRN for the program. All employees must meet additional training requirements annually as determined by the state and federal government. If you would like any more information, please contact Steve Gehlsen at

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