The leading human rights organization for all individuals with Down syndrome.

National Down Syndrome Society
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New York New York 10017
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I Know I Can
I Know I Can

Many times over the years people have asked me, "Do you think you can do this?" I am an only child. I like it that way. You see, by being an only child, I get to do and see many things. Plus I get spoiled a little, that's the fun part. But, I know I need to be able to do things on my own. That is why when I turned 20 I decided I needed to live on my own. People asked me, "Do you think you can do this?" I got an apartment. I live by myself. I like being on my own, doing my own thing. I love to cook my own meals. My mom taught me all about cooking, all the practice I got at home made it easy for me to live on my own. Cleaning is another thing that has been easy for me. You see, I am kind of a neat freak. Everything has to be in its place and organized. I love to dust and polish the furniture. But there are two things that I do not like to do. I do not like to vacuum, it is boring and I do not like to clean the bathtub, it is hard. My mom comes and helps me. When I wanted to get a job at 17, people asked me, "Do you think you can do this?" I got a job at a local supermarket as a courtesy clerk. I liked the job, but then I got a job that I love. I work at 24 Hour Fitness, the Agassi Sport Club. I have done many jobs for them from working in child care, answering phones, filing, making copies, scanning cards to let clients in, dusting, you name it and I have done it. I also get to see a lot of friends, neighbors and some of my doctors at the club and they get to see what a great job I can do. I am now 32 years old. I continue to live by myself, in my own condo now. I am still working at 24 Hour Fitness Agassi Sport Club, for over 12 years. Together, with my mom we started the Circle of Friends program 15 years ago to provide social activities for young adults, aged 13 and up, with all disabilities. I have been acting since the age of 4, and have appeared in several TV shows and on stage. I am involved in my community by volunteering. This year I was recognized and received the Melissa Riggio Voices Award. I got to go to New York, with my parents, to receive the award at the NDSS Spring Luncheon. It was a lot of fun and very scary at the same time. Even though I have been on stage in front of 500 people, it was quite different from giving a speech at the Spring Luncheon. Now when people ask me, "Do you think you can do this?" I can definitely answer, " I Know I Can Do That!" If you can get up in front of a lot of people and give a speech, even though you are scared, you can do anything!

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Joyce Taylor, United States, CA
4/8/2011 4:42:29 PM
I enjoyed reading about you Jen, even though I have known you and your mom for many years. This is a very articulate and well thought out story and I congratulate you for feeling you can do anything, because it is true, you can!! xo Joyce Taylor

Joani Rice, United States, IL
3/16/2011 8:12:03 PM
Jennifer embodies the independent spirit that we strive to give to all of our children, short or tall, blonde or brunette, abled or born wa disability! Jennifer will continue to achieve, work hard and enjoy the fullest life possible in the beautiful Cal

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