Meet our Current ABLE NRC Ambassadors

Beverli Austin

Parent of ABLE Account Owner
Pittsburgh, PA
ABLE Program: Pennsylvania ABLE

Beverli is a new ABLE Ambassador for the ABLE National Resource Center, joining the team in March of 2023.

Beverli Austin's children

In BEVERLI’s Own Words…

When my husband passed away, the twins were 9 months old. A lot of things hit you at once when you lose a spouse and parent of your children and financial future is one of those things. I knew I had to find a program that would give me peace of mind and ensure some type of stability for my children as they became older. For me, an ABLE account was the answer for my son. The ABLE account not only allows him to keep his federal mandated benefits, but it also allows him to save way over $2,000. I may not know what our future holds, but I do rest a little easier knowing that financially I can help him even after I am no longer here to physically help him. The ABLE account is a life saver for us.”  

Beverli Austin and her two children live in Pittsburgh, PA. Beverli’s son, TyVel, has Down syndrome and is an ABLE account owner.  His twin sister, TyAnn, is a PA 529 college savings account owner. Picture of TyVel in a cape

The twins are Beverli and her late husband, Tony’s, miracle twins. They were born at 27 weeks (about 6 months). TyAnn came home after two and a half months, but TyVel was not released from medical care until he was four months old due to a host of medical complications. Looking at TyVel today, you would not know he had multiple surgeries including heart repair for Tetralogy of Fallot, a colostomy bag placed and then removed due to Hirschsprung’s disease, a feeding tube placed and then surgically closed because of silent aspiration challenges and that he was once on a BiPAP machine then a CPAP machine due to sleep apnea among other procedures he had to endure in his young life. 

Today, as an active three-year-old, TyVel loves to sing and dance his way through life and can be a little bit feisty when he knows he can get away with it. While Beverli holds a B.A. Degree in Political Science from Virginia Wesleyan College, and an M.A. degree in Criminal Justice from Norfolk State University, she is currently working as a Home Health Aide for her son to provide consistent care due to the inconsistency and lack of skilled nursing available during the Covid 19 pandemic. 

Funds in TyVel’s ABLE account are being saved for his future needs such as education or retirement. As his mother, Beverli hopes the funds in his ABLE account will allow TyVel to live life to the fullest in ways outside of the medical world, but it does give her peace of mind knowing that, should a significant medical need arise, he will have funds available as needed to assist him on his journey. 

As a part of her saving strategy for TyVel’s ABLE account, Beverli shares his UGift code with family and friends during times when people would like to give towards her children’s needs. She also utilizes the reoccurring deposit option from a checking/savings account. This allows money to be deposited seamlessly each month. It is also a great tool to use to adjust the amount deposited should new and/or different needs take precedence that month. 

Beverli became a family member ABLE Ambassador to educate other parents about the benefits of an ABLE account, should their child qualify to have one.  She wants to show other ABLE-eligible families that these accounts are accessible and can provide a safety net for many of the unknowns that come with life.  

Over the past few years, she has learned firsthand that financial resources for people with disabilities are not something that is talked about in many communities and that this information is even more lacking in communities of color. Beverli says, “There is a wealth of information out there, but it does no good if no one knows about it. In my role as an ABLE Ambassador, I can help change that.”