Greatra Mayana

Career & Employment Opportunities

Self-Employment is Customized Employment


>My name is Tanna Skarniak. I am from Grand Island, Nebraska and I actually own my own business. It is TS Preservation Specialist. I do property preservation to work on foreclosed homes and homes in bankruptcy. Before I owned my own business I really couldn’t hold down a job. I felt sick all the time, I have a major depression and bipolar. I’ve been diagnosed with major depression since I was 11 years old. I had two dreams when I got diagnosed with major depression, I wanted to own my own home and I wanted to work full-time.>Felipe: Nebraska VR is an agency that helps individuals with disability to get and keep a job. We focus on their abilities more than on their disability. We talk about disability in order to plan on it, in order to be able
to grow. Tanna: So I went into Nebraska VR, I said “I would like to own my own business” and they were like “okay well let’s look at what we need to do”. We met with other
business owners and we went over like struggles and high points and low points of our businesses. Jenny: I got to know Tanna when I was starting with Easter Seals in 2013. I work with Nebraska VR clients that
want to start their own business. They partner with us so that we can give them the benefit analysis. It helps them understand how the impact of going back
to work will affect their benefits. Felipe: The business idea was impressive and I think in my whole career I’ve never seen anybody doing it. Tanna: They did a feasibility
study and they looked at what my competition was. They looked at what my
profit and loss would be. They helped me do a business plan. I actually doubled my profit for my first year from what they thought I would make. I was amazed, I didn’t think I would do that well. Still, when I get overwhelmed, my mental illness kicks in and at one point this summer I had not one house, but two
houses to trash out, so I was very overwhelmed. Felipe: Tanna called me one day
and she said I need some help. So we brought two younger individuals with
disabilities that are helping her to do work. It’s very rewarding to me that I feel
like I’ve paid it forward a little bit. Felipe: She’s helping us also to help other
individuals, younger individuals with disabilities, to learn the ropes of how to work. I know the one gentleman, at the end of the day. he always says “we worked really hard today didn’t we?” and I get a say “yes, you did. Thank you very much!” Jenny: The value of Nebraska VR, wow, they have so many resources and benefits that can help. Tanna’s success story is just one of many. That is why I do what I do. Felipe: As long as I’m helping them to make the difference. That’s the most important thing. Tanna: I own my own business
and I own my own home. I have accomplished my goals that I have set out to do. And there’s still times that I almost go in to like a panic because I think this is
really not me. I’m not the successful person and then I have to sit back and
think, yes I am. I’m this successful person and I’ve done it with the help of
Nebraska VR. I know that have had to put in a lot of hard work
for myself but I know that if it wasn’t for them and their support and their
belief that I could make it, that I would not be where I am today.

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