LivAbility Magazine
Photo. A mature woman wearing glasses and a Native American inspired print dress, smiles at the camera. Her carefully manicured hand rests under her chin. She wears glasses

Photo by Loren Worthington

Vera is an excellent caregiver and a steward to her community. She has a sound Independent Living Philosophy and empowers people wherever she goes. She’s respected by all my staff. They often say that they wish they could clone her. We are so fortunate to have her. – Gwen Dean

How long have you been with Ability360?
I started working as a volunteer in 1996, but officially joined the payroll two and a half years ago.

What’s your current job title?
Personal Care Attendant.

For people outside of the organization, what do you do?
Well, I do a couple of things. I’m a translator and interpreter in Serbian, Bosnian and Croatian, helping refugees from my country, Serbia (formerly Yugoslavia), to gain employment. Many come to Ability360 as caregivers. As a paid provider, I’m a personal care attendant to 5-year old twins, helping with their activities of daily living, teaching them so when they grow up they can become independent.

What do you like most about your work?
Seeing children happy and smiling, seeing them learn new skills and embrace new and continuous challenges.

Will you share a little something about your family?
I have four adult children, two sons and two daughters, and five grand-children, three grand-sons and two grand-daughters.

Will you tell us about your best day ever?
My best day ever was the day I came to America, 52 years ago.

What are people most surprised to know about you?
I was an airline stewardess back in my home country. At that time, being a stewardess in a small country was very glamorous, like being a movie star.

Is there a movie or TV show you drop everything to watch?
Yes, the movie is called “Sully”, and the reason is that I identify with the situation that unfolds during the movie since it relates to my first job back home as a stewardess. I like comedy too, like Jimmy Fallon.

If a mega-fortune fell into your lap, what would you do?
First of all, I would help my family, then, I would donate money to my church. Also, I would donate money to acancer research organization, and lastly, I would help American veterans.