Kristen has been inspiring others for years. She was born with Cerebral palsy, but nothing has stopped her from achieving her goals.
She graduated high school and college earning a BA degree in Early Childhood Education. After she graduated, she became a teacher. Two years later, Kristen discovered a new calling on her life. She stopped teaching and explored a series of different jobs. In 1994, Kristen began volunteering at Easterseals UCP fundraising events. While she got more involved at Easterseals UCP fundraising events, someone told her, “Once you walk through the doors here, it’s hard to walk out.” Kristen is a perfect example of that. She has been the Administrative Assistant in the Charlotte office for 13 years!
Kristen enjoys how her role at Easterseals UCP has expanded with increased responsibilities and challenges. Despite living with Cerebral palsy, Kristen is able to move around the office quite well and only occasionally uses a walker.
“Working for Easterseals UCP is a big challenge,” says Kristen. “I enjoy greeting the children, working with their parents and the Autism team.” She has seen tremendous impact throughout her years of being a part of the Easterseals UCP mission. “It makes me smile when a child who is non-verbal comes to the Autism Center and then a few weeks later is talking,” says Kristen. “It brightens my day!”
With the 32nd Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Kristen and many individuals living with disabilities are able to live to their full potential. The ADA has helped men and women living with disabilities get jobs without the issue of discrimination. But there is still more work to be done.
“I know the ADA has done a lot,” says Kristen. “I have just powered through the doors that won’t open and sidewalks with no curb cuts. If I don’t power through the things that are tough, I would not get anywhere. I have too many places to go and things to see!” Easterseals UCP is dedicated to making the world more accessible and inclusive for all. Kristen’s story is just one example of that!
About Easterseals UCP
Easterseals UCP North Carolina & Virginia is a trustworthy, compassionate partner providing exceptional disability and behavioral health services to help our neighbors live their best lives. Purpose, dedication and empathy drive our service delivery. Our diverse and inclusive 2,300 member team provides more than 9 million hours of meaningful support to 22,000 kids, adults and families in 11,000 home and community locations.