Wednesday’s Warrior: COVID-19 has increased ACCESS outreach team’s will to serve, group coordinator says

Wednesday's Warrior

CONNECTICUT (WTNH) “If I were to capture our philosophy it would be we rise by lifting others,” explained Evelyn Rossetti-Ryan, ACES Chief of Outreach and ACCESS.

She said the goal is to empower adults with disabilities and help them become contributing members of their communities.

“All people wish to be treated with dignity and all people have a purpose.”

She said that’s the goal of every staff member at ACES (Adult Career and Community Empowerment Support Services).

“To help them [clients] live and lead meaningful lives through gainful employment, through community engagement and through enrichment activities.”

Along with its community outreach program, ACCESS is able to manifest its vision and live out its mission of helping others.

“We embrace our community, the clients and individuals that we serve as well as the broader community,” Rossetti-Ryan said.

Thankfully, the pandemic has not paused those efforts. The organization was still able to keep up with giving to those in need.

Through initiatives, like the Warm Hands and Warm Hearts clothing and toiletry drive, ACCESS has collected close to 4,000 clothing items for countless organizations since 2019.

The group has even filled backpacks for students in need with essentials and collected food for area food pantries.

“It’s about helping one another,” said Rossetti-Ryan.

If anything, she said COVID-19 has increased the outreach teams will to serve.

“It’s all about connecting and creating meaning and support for one another.”

More information about the program can be found online.

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