A-DA's mission is "to provide vocational skills training and educational advancement for youth, military veterans, and adults with disabilities and to assist them in finding employment and overcoming barriers to personal and financial self-sufficiency." - Since 1975
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Able-Disabled Advocacy (A-DA) helps people with all disabilities and other barriers to employment achieve independence and become self-supporting through occupational skills training, on-the-job training, paid Internships, career counseling and job placement assistance.

  • Since our inception in 1975, Able-Disabled Advocacy has placed more than 10,000 youth and adults into jobs. The organization has received prestigious state and national grants from the United States Departments of Education, Labor and Housing and Urban Development and from the California Employment Development Department.
  • A-DA is presently the only organization in San Diego providing comprehensive employment and training services for persons representing all ages, ethnicities and disability groups.
  • In 2002, A-DA was one of three organizations throughout the U.S. who received the President’s New Freedom Initiative Award, its inaugural year, for outstanding efforts in advancing the employment of people with disabilities through the use of Assistive Technology.
  • A-DA received recognition from the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services on behalf of the J.M. Foundation’s “Search for Excellence” as a national leader in employment and training for persons with disabilities.
  • A-DA provides occupational skills training, work-based learning opportunities, Work Readiness Training, career counseling and job placement in a wide variety of occupations through our contacts with over 200 employers every year. Since 1991, our 20-member Business Advisory Council has been directly involved in program planning, networking with other employers and the direct hiring of participants.
  • A-DA is one of only two San Diego organizations including schools, which provides occupational skills training using Assistive Technology that is directly tied to employment-related outcomes and job placement.
  • A-DA’s Executive Director, Elaine Cooluris, received a Distinguished Service Award in 1998 from the Governor of California that is given sparingly to recognize major local, national, and statewide contributions to the employment of people with disabilities.

A-DA hires people based on ABILITY.

Over half of the staff members at Able-Disabled Advocacy have a disABILITY.