Shawn is only in her twenties and has accomplished so much. She has studied to be a Life Coach, helped run a non-profit, has started at least two websites to help empower people with disabilities, was just selected to be on a statewide self-advocacy board and now she’s 75% done with a book she calls, “Let Me Be.”
“I like to read and write. I’ve started my book several times but am on my way to finishing it,” said Shawn Neal. “I have a passion for people and I want to help them succeed. I want to share my story and let people with disabilities know they can achieve success and do things they want to do, sometimes they just need some help. I can help.”
Shawn comes from a family of eight and was not treated any differently because of her disability.
“I was raised by a single dad. He is a Reverend. I had chores and responsibilities just like my siblings.”
Shawn moved out of her Detroit home after talking to a friend who receives services from CLS. “She told me how I could get my own place with help from CLS. I’ve been living by myself for years now and love it. I’m a loner by nature so it suits me just fine. My staff comes in five times a week to help with cooking, cleaning and shopping. I like solitude, it keeps me calm.”
Shawn is currently training to become a certified Peer Mentor offered by The Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority. “I have experience in helping people achieve their goals and I thought becoming certified would help me help others. Going through the training at CLS is giving me hands on experience working alongside experienced Peer Mentors. There are a lot of people who can benefit greatly from working with a Peer Mentor. It’s a wonderful program.”