My Farewell to Search and JJsList.com
These are words that a leader named Winston Churchill said to some students many years ago when the people of Great Britain were living through some of the challenging days of World War II. (What Churchill actually said was “Never Give In,” but that’s for another blog – ha, ha).
“Never, never, never give up” are words that I say to myself when things are changing and challenging. As I write this final blog to say farewell to Search and to JJsList.com, I think about how those words have carried me and our amazing team of volunteers, staff, No Boundaries families and Disability Awareness Players through lots of changing and challenging times. These words have also carried us through many creative and imaginative times and have fueled my passion and work to help people with disabilities participate fully in their communities and to have their voices heard.
My work with, and advocacy for, people with disabilities will continue. I am leaving Search to take on a new role as Director of IL ABLE (A Better Life Experience) for the Treasurer of the State of Illinois. In this role, I will continue to dedicate myself to helping individuals with disabilities and their families build lives of choice and empowerment through one of the most important opportunities for people with disabilities since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the ABLE Savings and Investment program.
Here at Search’s busy location at 824 Dempster Street in Evanston, IL all of our great programs will continue:
JJsList.com will continue to thrive and to connect businesses and their disability-aware service features to the community in the capable hands of self-advocates, team members and the many people who post on-line reviews about the disability-aware features of businesses throughout the country.
Disability Awareness Trainings will continue to grow and impact thousands of staff and students of businesses, organizations and schools under the amazing leadership of Search, Inc.
The Pace/JJsList.com Hop on the Bus to Independence Workshops (has your school or organization had one yet?) will continue to teach our students with disabilities about public transportation and give them the tools they need to travel safely and independently in their communities.
No Boundaries will continue to support adults with disabilities to build on-land and on-line skills that they need for the 21st Century workplace, and to collaborate with Search’s Career Services team to help individuals with disabilities obtain fulfilling employment of their choice.
Finally, Search’s commitment to innovation and its vision to provide person-centered service to the individuals it serves have never been stronger, even while we grapple with a state system in crisis. It has been an honor to work with Search’s dedicated staff to help individuals with disabilities live self-directed and fulfilling lives.
Never, Never, Never Give Up! Let’s keep going. Let’s keep building lives of independence, let’s keep making things better. Together.
Your Partner and Friend,