Toni Asselin Success Story

Success Story For Toni Asselin

Toni has worked in Stop and Shop for 33 Years.  She has been a Porter since 1987 working in janitorial services, “I help everybody out when they need it.” I work with everybody.  My Mom worked there at one time, she and my Grandfather helped me get the position.  Back then it was a lot of paperwork, not with computers like now.”  I don’t have a coach; I am independent at home and at work.  At one point I had an issue at work, and had to get my shop steward to help me.  He helped me resolve the situation.  We worked it out and I was happy.”

“I lived at Mansfield training school from 1963 to 1974.  My mom thought it would be ok for me to come home in 1974, but I was not good at living on my own, I had to learn how to live outside the school.”  Toni has lived on her own for almost two years.  She lived with her mom for 58 years, her mom is still living, but she wanted a change, so her sister Mickey, and social worker Chris helped her find a place to live at Cedar Woods Apartments.  She said, “It feels great!  I love it, I have friends here, I can do what I like.  We play bingo; have tenant meetings, organized crafts.  I attend the Rock and Roll Advocacy group with Varian Salters, we learn a lot of new things, go camping, do dances, my friend Shannon goes too, and we hang out a lot.”

Toni Asselin

Toni had knee surgery at January 25th 2019.  “Before the surgery I was in a lot of pain, afterwards not as bad, but now feeling really good, I hope to be back at work the third week of June.”  To help recuperate from surgery she has been walking her dog Oscar, he is a Yorkshire mixed breed; she’s had him for 11 years.  Just recently Toni walked from home to Stop and Shop, she said it felt good.

Toni Asselin

One of her favorite hobbies is embroidery.  She has been doing this since she was in school, for about 35 years.  Embroidery is sewing patterns with a needle and thread, on pillows, quilts, and table cloths.  She received three awards from the Hebron Harvest Fair for her work.

She had attended Special Olympics when she was younger, and got gold medals in soft ball. “Maybe I will get involved again.”

“This spring I did my first healthy relationship class, and I enjoyed it.  You have to use your own judgement, some things were for me, and some things were for others, I was much older than most in the class, the safety information is what I got the most out of.”

Toni’s advice to those who are looking for a job is to “use the internet.”  “A job makes a huge difference, when I’m not working I am bored to death, I usually work 24 hours per week, and I get time and a half on Sundays, I’ve made friends, and it’s made my life nice. I would tell people; do it, use the social services that you have, do it when you are ready, and do not be afraid.”

Toni words of encouragement for others are, “Be independent, do what you want, your life is your own.”

Submitted by Kevin Arce, DDS Self Advocate Coordinator