Staff Feature: Whitney Jayne

How long have you worked at Abilitree?

I’ve worked at Abilitree since January 2020. I met Abilitree’s advocacy team through my previous job as a hearing reporter, and was so impressed with their work that I knew I’d love working for Abilitree when they asked if I’d be interested in helping in the advocacy department.  I was with the advocacy team for some time, and then moved into the Work Incentives position full time when Jill Hanneman, the previous Work Incentives Coordinator retired.

What drew you to working at Abilitree?
I’ve always been drawn to helping people and advocating for those who don’t always have the luxury or ability to advocate for themselves. It’s a humbling privilege for me to be able to provide such a needed support through the amazing Work Incentives Network and Abilitree. It’s very rewarding.
What continues to impact you about your job?
Most of the people I work with have very challenging physical, mental, or emotional obstacles (sometimes all three) that are quite significant. Yet in spite of their experience, they have such wonderful attitudes, work ethic, humor, and determination. I am constantly inspired and in awe.
What impact do you think you have on making our community stronger?
I’ve seen time and time again, first hand, that we are indeed stronger together, and a community is only as strong as the sum of its parts. If any group of people are marginalized or disempowered, then not only is that an injustice that I feel compelled to help change, but it also affects and disempowers the community as a whole. When we take time to lift others up, we lift the group up. By advocating and helping to empower some of our most vulnerable community members, we also help empower and make our community that much stronger.
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