An Entrepreneur and An Advocate

I first met Sarah when she was a student in the Kalamazoo Regional Education Service Agency Youth Adult Program (YAP). Sarah was learning how to use the bus system in Kalamazoo and showed me her business plan for a future cleaning business. Through YAP, Sarah had some experiences cleaning in various places. She found that she liked cleaning and that she is good at it. So why not make a career out of her own business? Fast forward three years. I became reacquainted with Sarah when she attended a Regional Interagency Consumer Council (RICC) meeting last year. I asked her if she had started her cleaning business and she had. Sarah has a registered business name: Purity Cleaning. She has three regular costumers and cleans for other people as needed. She has business cards and a brochure, but mostly Sarah gets work through word of mouth.

As Sarah has continued to be involved with RICC, she has taken on an important leadership position. She is the Public Policy Coordinator and takes this advocacy role very seriously. Since she took on this role, the Public Policy Committee has been meeting on a regular basis. They have talked about transportation, Medicaid issues and employment.

Currently, the RICC Public Policy Committee has been closely following Michigan Senate Bill 546 – the Freedom to Work Act that was introduced by Sen. Tonya Schuitmaker. Basically, the Freedom to Work Act will increase how much people with disabilities can earn in competitive employment before they lose Medicaid benefits. The Bill has passed the Michigan Senate. Sarah is well informed about this piece of legislation and is working to educate others about it.

Sarah is a young woman who is a dedicated citizen leader. She created her own job and actively advocates for policies that benefit people with disabilities.

You can contact Purity Cleaning at carmanysarah@ymail.com