Anne Berry joined the Abilities United Community Connections program in January 2011. Over the years she has taken advantage of all that the program offers, volunteering at local nonprofits and participating in the many social group activities. Anne states with her natural enthusiasm, “I heard that Abilities United was good and when I got here I found out that some of my friends from my old program were here. I really like it here because I’m making new friends too. We do a lot of social activities like zumba, art classes, book club, and camping. I am also taking a TV production class at the Media Center. I’m doing volunteer work at the Boys and Girls Club. My favorite volunteer job is helping the senior citizens at Lytton Gardens in Palo Alto. We call the numbers for their bingo games.”
In April 2011, Anne also joined the Abilities United Independent Living Skills program. Learning the skills needed to live in her own apartment, in January 2012, she moved into a Sunnyvale house with three roommates. She proudly states “I take the bus from Sunnyvale to Abilities United each day. I learn to cook and shop for ingredients to make healthy recipes. I also learn to clean the house. My time management and safety skills are great! ” Recently, Anne has learned to use Uber (or Lyft) to get around. Though she is familiar and confident with the bus, her active life style would not be possible if she were restricted to public transit. Anne also practices a very strict exercise regimen to help her get in shape and lose weight. Anne beams when she talks about her achievements; “I lost 25 pounds by exercising, walking, and swimming five days a week!”
All of Anne’s hard work and dedication has paid off with paid employment. In June 2017, Anne secured a job at the Residence Inn in Los Altos where she works in the laundry room.
Anne understands the importance of giving back to the community. Anne also gives back to Abilities United by swimming in the Abilities United Aquathon. Each year since 2011 she has been a member of the Justice League swim team along with her friends from the Community Connections program.
Anne’s new goals are to socialize more and learn to sing and write songs. She also loves to paint watercolor and uses her outings and adventures to influence her artwork. Anne is passionate about her life, “It’s good, it’s awesome!”
We look forward to Anne’s energy and enthusiasm as she swims the honorary lap at the 40th Anniversary Aquathon 2017!