Captain Ken's Diner and Waypoint - a partnership made in fish and chip heaven

Captain Ken's Diner and Waypoint

   A partnership made in fish and chip heaven


Jen, Ken and JasonIt’s no secret that meaningful work can have a significant impact on our mental well-being. Working, whether paid or unpaid, is good for our health; it contributes to our happiness, helps us to build confidence and self-esteem, and rewards us financially.

Ken Cowan, owner of Captain Ken’s Diner in Penetanguishene knows this well. He's been
coming in to the diner for more than 40 years, rarely missing a day. His work has given him a purpose and opportunity to interact with customers, the part of his job he loves the most. While Ken has given so much back to his community, he also recognizes how much the community has given him. It’s one of the reasons he supports Waypoint clients and helps them to get back into the workforce. 

“Having a job and a purpose every day is important,” he says. “I’ve always supported high school students and now I support the programs at Waypoint. It’s a confidence booster for them and helps them build some skills.” 

It was Jennifer Perrault, a Waypoint Employment Specialist, who first reached out to Ken to see if he’d be interested in supporting a client. 

“I’ve known Ken for a long time and knew he did a lot for the community,” says Jennifer. “He’s such an easy-going guy; I knew he would be a good fit to support a client in returning to the workforce.”
"We have so much to learn from each other" Ken Cowan quote
As Employment Specialists, Perrault and her colleagues support clients to choose, attain and maintain meaningful work, and if necessary, help them build new skills 

“We work with the client and the employer to find a good job match,” says Perrault. “We take the time to understand everyone’s needs and help employers find candidates who have the skills and attributes they’re looking for.”

As for Jason, who’s been working at Captain Ken’s Diner for the last few months, he says it’s been a great experience and it feels good to be able to come to work every week. Part of his duties include washing dishes, clearing tables and keeping the front door, made entirely of glass, clean, a never-ending process it seems. “I do the best I can every day. It’s easy work and I like the routine. And Ken is really great,” he says.

Ken adds: “With the support I get from Jennifer, and the quality of work Jason gives every shift, it’s a mutually beneficial arrangement, we all get a lot out of this experience.” He adds that he would encourage others to consider supporting a Waypoint client in their business. “We have so much to learn from each other.”

Jennifer agrees, “Working with Ken and others like him is so valuable for our clients. Ken is a great employer and puts the clients at ease. The support he offers is an important part of their recovery.”

If you’re interested in supporting a Waypoint client to find meaningful work or would like more information about our employment programs, contact us at 705.549.3181.