Sandy Ho | Youth Mentoring

Sandy Ho sits on the center of the Celtics' court at TD Garden next to Celtics players and staff

Through her work with Thrive, the Easterseals mentoring program, Sandy Ho has empowered young women with disabilities locally and worldwide to broaden their horizons and lead more independent lives.

Sandy developed the groundbreaking program, which matches the young women with adult female mentors who have disabilities.  As role models, the mentors help them develop leadership skills, learn to advocate for themselves and set goals for their future.  A conference with prominent speakers caps off the year.

Through its social media component, Thrive also has created a worldwide online community for young women with disabilities.

The blog began as an e-book of letters that Sandy asked the mentors and young women to write to their younger selves with words of advice or life lessons they have learned.  Before long – on its own – the Letters to Thrive blog caught the interest of young women with disabilities across the US, in Canada, Europe, New Zealand and Australia and is still growing.  

A 26-year-old grad student, Sandy understands the challenges young women with disabilities face.  She uses a wheelchair, is significantly shorter in statue and has brittle bones.  Her growth as an emerging leader in the disability community reflects the strength and skills she brings to every challenge she faces.

“What I most enjoy about the Thrive program is that I am able to be part of a community where there is so much pride in being young women with disabilities,” Sandy said.  “I’m proud that the empowerment from this community is something that will continue to have a lasting impact on the program participants.”

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