A letter from Jayla

Hello my name is Jayla and I’m 18 years old. My high school DePaul Cristo Rey  has a corporate work study program and this year they placed me to work at Starfire. At first, I didn’t know what I was getting into. I walked in a little nervous and quiet, but I also walked in with an open heart to new things. Back then I wasn’t totally sure but now I’m totally sure that I love this place. My whole outlook on Starfire changed as soon as I walked into the door of the building because everybody was so welcoming and nice.

Working at Starfire itself is fun but also cool because they made my view of everything broader. They fight for the same idea that I fight for which is social justice for marginalized people. I know that people with disabilities are isolated from the community, but I never fully paid attention how serious the situation is. People with disabilities are as human as people who don’t have a disability. They breathe the same air, so who is to say that they are different. I wish everybody was equal, this world would be a better place. Sad to say that the world we live in everybody is not equal. But what I’m proud about is that change is happening.

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This is Dylan, Tod, and me on the street car

I have enjoyed my time with Starfire because I got to connect and build relationships with people with disabilities.

“This job has to offer a lot you build relationships with others, but also opens up your mind to new ideas. Those ideas that come to you on this job will help you help others.”

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College Hill Café with me, Joseph and Michelle

I learned that certain battles I can’t fight and that I may have issues but other people may have a more intense issue everything isn’t just about me. Working here made me want to do more with the community and care for others. Even though you might be living with a disability, you are still someone who has a dream. Everybody has a story but with determination, humility and having a positive attitude you will be successful in life. If you don’t get anything out of this letter just remember this having a disability cannot keep you away from accomplishing your goals.

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About katiebachmeyer

I like to collect stuff. But non-material stuff-- like friendships, stories, and wisdom from older people with smile wrinkles. This kind of stuff isn't always well organized or labeled in boxes, but it makes up who I am.
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