Our campus is always bustling with guests who come to enjoy the farmyard, Magnolia Café & Bakery, and other businesses. However, many people who visit us are not aware that we are more than just a fun family destination – we also serve men and women with developmental disabilities. This spring, we opened a new Visitors Center in the middle of campus. It features a pictorial timeline of our history, information about our current programs, and cases displaying items from the original pet shop and letters from famous friends and supporters. It’s the perfect place to stop in and learn about our founders and our history.
You can also meet two of our Participants, Janice and Tina, who staff the Visitors Center seven days a week. They both work hard to keep the Visitors Center clean and tidy, and help out the staff in the offices, doing everything from stocking the businesses with flyers to helping out with mailings and making copies.
Janice has been with us since the first pet shop opened on State Street in 1961. “I love helping everyone out and greeting all the people!” she said of her new job. She previously worked at the Magnolia Café & Bakery, but is excited by all of the new skills she has learned at the Visitors Center. “I do everything!” she said enthusiastically. In the few months that Janice has worked with us, we’ve really been able to see her blossom. “Janice has grown in confidence and is now actively looking for projects to do. She can now do most of her duties with limited or no supervision,” said Janice’s supervisor Jackie. Janice has a great story to share with any guests who come in as well, having been with Lambs Farm through so many different changes.
Tina works here two days a week, splitting her time between the Visitors Center and a local Jewel. She loves that people can come in and learn more about our Participants and history. Although she enjoys all the new skills she has learned since she started here, her favorite part of the job is being able to work with the staff in the offices. “It’s fun to hang out with them and get to know all of the customers,” she said. “Tina has a wonderful rapport with the guests. Her friendliness is apparent, and she is eager to help,” Jackie said, noting how she too has grown since she first started with us at the Visitors Center. The only hard part of the job? “Working on the weekends!”
Our Visitors Center is located right in the middle of our businesses on campus, and is open seven days a week, from 10 a.m.– 5 p.m. Stop in and meet Janice and Tina, and spend some time hearing their unique stories.