Find out what we’ve been up to! Awards, spotlights, media and more.

Man in hat and flannel shirt accepting an award from another man in a blue blazer in front of a large stage. A screen behind them says Awards Banquet.

Weldon’s Journey at SOAR365 Comes Full Circle

Leading employees with disabilities in Landscaping & Grounds Maintenance, Weldon learned patience, compassion and a great deal about himself.

Weldon Hall is a man of many talents. His first experience working for SOAR365 was in facilities maintenance at Camp Baker. He enjoyed the job but left after two-and-a-half years to start his own business. “One guy in a truck doing home renovations and remodels,” he explains with a smile.

While the work let him use a wide range of skills, something was missing. He always kept an eye on job postings at SOAR365, until one day, a grounds maintenance position became available. It wasn’t what Weldon was trained to do, but he knew he’d be capable. He decided to take the chance.

“I wanted to be back here because I’ve always wanted my life to mean something,” says Weldon. “When I worked at SOAR365 the first time, I really, really felt it. Because I knew the work that I was doing wasn’t just for a check. It’s helping out some people who can help themselves, they just don’t know how. So, we work with them, guide them, until they say ‘oh yeah, I can do this!’”

That motivation is something he makes sure to share with his crew, as a crew leader. “I think things just work better when people are working for a purpose. So, I let the guys know, hey, I’m here for you guys. And whether you guys know it, you’re helping me out, too.”

The job has helped Weldon grow and develop new skills. “I needed to be a little more patient, a little more understanding, a little more open at times,” he says.

Working with employees with disabilities for the first time can be challenging. “When I worked at Camp Baker, I didn’t have anyone with disabilities working around me.” Although he was proud to support SOAR365’s programs, “I didn’t have that direct contact. Once I came here, and I was told you’re going to be with a lot of people with disabilities, and you have to learn how to talk to them and support them” he was intimidated.

But Weldon quickly learned that he didn’t need to worry. The simplest approaches often work best, and kindness and listening go a long way.

“I started out trying to get to know each one of them,” Weldon explains. “Whoever was in my truck, I’d ask them about their families, what they like to do, what they like to watch, what makes them upset, what do they do normally when they’re upset. And slowly but surely, I started to get a feel for them. And just through that little bit of talking, it opened up doors to really get to know them.”

Weldon also uses accommodations when modeling how to use certain equipment, like weed-eaters. He might show proper technique by exaggerating the correct motions or using sound effects and physical cues. Riding mowers are often popular; employees with disabilities sometimes struggle to transition from that piece of equipment to another. Weldon has learned that patience and a little bit of space work wonders.

“I give them time to go off on their own, have a little bit of a moment for themselves,” he says. “Sometimes they’ll come back and talk to me and say, ‘I understand what you’re saying. Is it alright if I get on it later on?’ And I can accommodate that because I see that they’re trying to accommodate me. So, I’ll make that extra step and let them do that. It keeps things peaceful.”

When complimented on his calm, understanding demeanor, Weldon laughs and says, “Believe me, it wasn’t there on day one, but yes, I’ve developed it.”

“Weldon repeatedly demonstrates that he has a heart for people and is willing to be sacrificial with his time and talents,” says Randy Britt, Director of Commercial Grounds. “Weldon, like all of us, has come to realize that working with people with disabilities is merely a gateway to more effectively and compassionately working with people, in general.”

It’s a perspective that he’ll keep with him as he transitions to his new job in facilities maintenance. He’s already started spending time at Camp Baker again, helping fix ramps and plumbing ahead of Summer Camp. The job is a better fit for his skillset, but he’ll miss his crew. Supervising employees with disabilities, “it’s a big give and take, and I like doing that. I really do love it. It’s not so much the work that I’m doing, it’s the people I’m working with.”

No matter what part of SOAR365 Weldon is working in, he knows he’s contributing to something bigger than himself. “It really lifts you up. It feels like this is what I was meant to do,” he says. “I think everybody needs a legacy.” And he’s found his, supporting children and adults with disabilities at SOAR365.

Did you know? Landscaping & Grounds Maintenance is just one of the competitive businesses we run, and the profits help fund our programs. To learn more about SOAR365 Business Solutions, visit

Know someone with or without a disability who is looking for a rewarding job, like Weldon’s? Be sure to refer them to!

You are now exiting SOAR365’s website.

You’ll be redirected to the following website to make a donation to SOAR365.

Thank you for your generosity!

You are now exiting SOAR365’s website.

You’ll be redirected to the following website to purchase supplies for SOAR365.

Thank you for your generosity!

You are now exiting SOAR365's website.

You'll be redirected to the website to search and apply for jobs with SOAR365.

Thanks for visiting!