HireAbility

Findlay Wilkinson

HireAbility Vermont consumer

Photograph of Findlay Wilkinson

My start with HireAbility Vermont:

I came to HireAbility Vermont as a very tired and disillusioned person. On a personal level, I’m proud that I’ve stuck through the difficulties of having my illness and not giving up and I’m starting to learn self-confidence and that I do actually have something to offer. I’m gradually accepting that I have something to offer the workforce.

I’ve always wanted to work with animals, but I never had the opportunity to pursue it because I came from a very low-income family and had to work since I was 13 years old out of necessity. So I just went and did what I had to do without ever believing I could do what I wanted to do. And now with HireAbility Vermont, I’m like, “huh, yeah I have the skills and aptitude, and I was like oh my god, like, what I want to do is actually what I have the skills to do.”

So, for me, it was very humbling and also very empowering that I can actually choose what I want to do. And it’s risky and it’s going to be hard work, but because I have HireAbility Vermont I don’t feel as scared to take that risk.

 

What HireAbility Vermont means to me:

To me it’s independence. When you have a chronic illness you are in a very dark place, and it really does make you question your worth. My identity is very much my work, so to have that taken away from you is soul-shattering. But with HireAbility Vermont, I see and have the opportunity to have that pride in my work again. And that safety net that if I fall, I won’t fall too hard.

My advice for anyone who is thinking about connecting with HireAbility Vermont:

It doesn’t hurt to send an email or make a phone call to find out what you can do and it’s not failure, and it’s not giving up. And I think we live in a world where we are ashamed to ask for help. I know I am. And I cannot emphasize enough how welcoming HireAbility Vermont is and they will never shame you—they empower you to make your choice.

 

HireAbility January 24, 2022