Sometimes I think of KenCrest as a large classroom spread across three states. Many thousands of dedicated staff and the people we support in vibrant and enthusiastic relationship; confronted each day with opportunities to bring unique talents and abilities to life. No fixed roles; sometimes teachers, sometime students, moving together, building, reaching toward positive goals. A boisterous community lab-setting, full of experimentation, with no graduation day in sight.
Opportunity brings this ability to life and freedom is the necessary ingredient for that opportunity to exist. On July 26, 2015, we celebrate a significant step in the march toward greater freedom for all people. Passage of the Americans for disabilities act ADA had ripples that reach all of us. Obvious and physical, of course – my mother loved the lowered curbs as she marched through Manhattan, and later, accessibility and public access to a wheel chair when she wasn’t quite so vigorous.
We all can see ramps and grab bars and the best parking spaces at the mall. Harder to see, and to feel, is that part of ADA that offered dignity and value; that opened pathways to the world of work. The parts of the act that let so many folks join the rest of us in our corporate and community careers and vocations. The good feelings that came from making a difference and having a bit more financial independence. Continue reading