We have many optimistic, energetic and inspiring people here at Semiahmoo House Society and Jamie Thompson is certainly one of them.
Jamie is in his early thirties and has dreams, hopes and aspirations for the future. He would like to become a chef at a high-end restaurant, own a mansion by the beach, get married, have a child and entertain his friends. Jamie has lots of energy and much happening in his life. “The energy is good for me. It keeps me motivated,” he says.
Currently, Jamie lives in White Rock, with Edmond, his home share provider, and Chris, his room mate whom he considers his brother. Jamie receives work skills training through the Employment Training and Support Services at Semiahmoo House Society and works with our in-house catering and janitorial crews. He is often part of the catering team providing food services to events that we host. Whether he prepares food in the kitchen or serves guests in the great room, he always approaches his work seriously and professionally.
Jamie considers people at work his second family, stating that May and Tara, his supervisors in the kitchen, are very supportive of him. “I can tell them anything about what’s bothering me,” he says. When asked about the kind of worker and colleague Jamie is, Tara says, “He’s a hard worker and a very talented chef. He’s not afraid to experiment with food and explore new recipes. He’s also a good mentor to the other guys in the catering crew.” His colleague Alexa confirms this by saying, “He’s awesome.”
In addition to working hard, Jamie believes in enjoying life. Whenever he gets a chance, he plays foosball and basketball. Every Friday night, he goes out to eat at various local restaurants with his friends. He likes to spend time with people who have a sense of humour and crack him up. He says, “I like lots of jokes and laughter.” He read the novel Goose Bumps over and over. He would like to read more, but finds it hard to make the time. He enjoys watching cooking shows on television and learning new recipes. Every year or so, he loves to travel to the Philippines with Edmond, a native of that country, visiting Edmond’s relatives, site seeing on the various islands, shopping for deals and going out to restaurants.
Among Jamie’s many talents is his sense of style which is evidenced by the bowler derby hat that he wears to dress up his outfit on special occasions. “That’s one of my styles to wear a hat,” he says. He’s not afraid of change and is quite adept at creating his own image. In fact, he recently coloured his hair in a blond hue. He says, “I have a lot of clothes. I like fashion and style. I don’t follow styles of famous people. I create my own.”
On the spiritual side, Jamie values having his own space and practices respect in his interactions. He says, “Respect is very important to me. Everyone deserves to be respected in how they want to be treated. I have respectful relationships with my friends, Ryan, Dan and Larry. I am respectful of them and I appreciate receiving their respect.” Larry, his friend and colleague, says about Jamie, “He’s a good guy; he’s kind and friendly.”
When asked about what part of his life mostly defines him, Jamie says “I like cooking; it’s my passion. And I like to hear the food I make is good. I have a connection with food. Sharing food among friends makes me excited and happy. It’s super great. I enjoy seeing them enjoy the food.”
Ryan concludes, “He’s awesome.”
By Louise Tremblay, The Semiahmoo Foundation
Semiahmoo House Society, a non-profit organization located in Surrey/White Rock, exists to provide quality services and supports to people with disabilities and their families in the community. The Semiahmoo Foundation exists to fund, support and enhance the programs and services delivered by Semiahmoo House Society.