Sonya’s Inspiring Ticket to Work Success Story

Sonya understands how transforming a disability can be.  She relates, “When you work all your life and then something happens where you can’t work, it’s hard.”

The Social Security Administration disability ‘return to work’ program was able to help her during the most difficult times. Several years ago, Sonya googled whether or not someone could work and get Social Security disability benefits.  Her search yielded a story about Lisa Seeley and the Ticket to Work Program.  

Proactive in her work effort, Sonya contacted Lisa who put her in touch with Employment Options who explained the Ticket To Work Program and the free job placement services they offer.   She also offered an application to fill out online to see if Employment Options could help. They could help! She became a client and a job counselor was assigned to help her with her goals and also help guide her through the program. 

“Initially, I was offered a stay-at-home phone sales position, but I wanted to work ‘outside’ the home as an accountant,” Sonya reports.  She was able to find an accounting position outside the home which was a better fit for her situation.  

Sonya says, “The Ticket to Work Program is a great program!  It is good to know I won’t lose my disability benefits if something happens to me while I am a participant.”   

Sonya views her participation in Ticket to Work as a safety net while thriving in life despite her disability.  Routinely, she submits her pay stubs so that Employment Options can help track her benefits and stays in touch with her personal job counselor at Employment Options, Ethel, with whom she has a wonderful rapport.

Shortly after returning to work, Sonya and her mother both received a devastating cancer diagnosis.  Her mother died within three months. Sonya is in remission now but still has a lot of doctor appointments.  She relates, “My employer supported me through my cancer. I couldn’t ask for better support than what I have found through my employer and co-workers.”

Sonya continues to be appreciative of the free SSA Ticket To Work Program.  She said, “I believe if more people were educated about the Ticket to Work Program, more people would take advantage of it.  My job counselor Ethel has my back. It gives me confidence to know that I have support!”   

Sonya shows how strength from within and courage can help someone overcome challenges and work toward achieving their goals.  Her journey is a true example of how work can be more than just a paycheck!  

Receiving SSDI or SSI?  Job seekers (ages 18-64) who want to see if Employment Options can help them, can submit our online application   Our Screening staff will follow up by phone within 2 business days!  Questions? 800-441-3114 Ext 0.