Holli, who has William’s Syndrome, never expected so many new doors to open up for her when she joined the Toward Maximum Independence (TMI) Tailored Day Services program in 2018. She shared with us how her life has changed for the better professionally and personally. We love what she had to say!
Q. How has TMI assisted you?
A. TMI helped me get my first job as an intern at Greywood Kennels where I played with the animals, bathed dogs (I got wet a lot!!), fed them special diets, and cleaned up lots of poop. I stopped working there because of the pandemic. Then, my TMI Job Coach helped me get a job at Walmart as a greeter on 7/29/2021. The best thing that happened to me though since joining TMI was I met my boyfriend Jordan at a TMI CONNECT social event. Jordan and I are still together! We love doing fun things such as going to Monster Truck Jam and having a picnic at Lindo Lake. During my time with TMI, I have matured and developed my self-confidence which has helped me feel empowered.
Q. What life challenges have you faced?
A. One of the challenges I face is that my mother is ill with COPD – I am so thankful to be able to help my mother when she needs me. I also work two jobs – one at Walmart and the other in IHSS helping my mother. This has taught me responsibility, budgeting time and resources for myself, and being thankful for the time I spend with my mother, my boyfriend and all the friends I have made along the way, including TMI staff.
Q. How have you faced those challenges?
A. With a good heart and a smile on my face.
Q. What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
A. I love spending time with my mother. We do lots of fun crafts together, such as constructing puzzles, some of this I have on my walls. We also do paint projects together, and sometimes we laugh and giggle and watch t.v. Jordan makes me laugh a lot too. I also visit with my dad and grandmother. I take care of my cat Jingles.
Q. Is there anything that you would like to share regarding growing up?
A. I used to love going to school. I love people. I love working at Walmart because I love meeting new people.
Q. What are your hopes for your future?
A. I would like to get married and have a family. I am thinking about getting my driver’s license, but I’m still kind of scared about doing it. Driving on the freeway is scary to me.
Q. Who do you admire and why?
A. I admire my mother. She is pretty, full of life and fun! Even though her illness is difficult, she remains positive. She is a good role model in my life.
Q. Is there anything additional that you would like to share with our readers?
A. I simply want to say, “Stay Positive!!”
Great advice, Holli! Congratulations and we look forward to continuing to assist you with fulfilling your dreams!
(Editor's Note: Jordan, who also has William's Syndrome, has been been successfully working at VONS for eight years with the support of his TMI Job Coach. Congratulations to Jordan on his success. We are extremely happy for you both!)
Toward Maximum Independence (TMI) clients with intellectual and developmental disabilities who are a part of our Tailored Day Services (TDS) program are encouraged to self-direct and participate in determining their program day. We are here to help our clients plan their day their way. With the anticipation of maximizing life satisfaction, this exciting program tailors our client’s day based on their personal choices, hopes and dreams.
Toward Maximum Independence (TMI) has been transforming the lives of children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities since 1981 and the Deaf and Hard of Hearing since 2000. In 2020, we launched Disabled Veteran Employment Services. TMI strives to help our clients to realize their hopes and dreams by providing Employment Solutions, Community Living and Family Support Services throughout San Diego, Riverside and Imperial Counties. To stay connected with us, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Together we can share acceptance and awareness, ultimately contributing to further inclusion.