Welcome to Episode #003! This time we feature client, collaborator and friend, Abby Berger of the Independence Center St. Louis. Abby has an incredibly important job at what I feel is one of the most vital non-profit organizations in the greater St. Louis region. Here is a little insight into what they do from their website:
"We believe in the dignity of work. Work is more than a paycheck – it’s an affirmation of self-worth. It provides financial independence, purpose, and connects us to our community. Adults with mental illness often face enormous challenges in finding and keeping jobs. Even with skills and the ability to manage symptoms, the stigma of mental illness is a barrier to hiring them. Many of our members didn’t have the confidence to apply for a job, until they came to our program. Others had a good job, even a successful career, before their mental illness emerged and caused them to lose their employment. The Independence Center is here to help members who are able, to get on a path to meaningful employment, from wherever their starting point may be."
Abby is the Business Development Manager but the title does not do justice to the many hats she wears at the Independence Center. She has her hands into everything from social media, video production with us here at Route 3 Films, Dancing with the St. Louis Stars, their biggest fundraiser and so, so much more. Take a listen to our wide ranging discussion from her early experiences as a volunteer in Jesuit Volunteer Corps to her beginnings in the mental health field to being at the helm of Dancing with the St. Louis Stars. Enjoy and share!