And the Winners Are…

March 7, 2019

On February 14th, Valentine’s Day, National Disability Institute held the webinar, Share the Love, to officially launch its new website. The webinar wasn’t just a walkthrough of the new website and its features, however. The webinar culminated a two-week-long scavenger hunt of the website, where participants were challenged with answering 10 questions about NDI’s newly redesigned website to be entered into a chance to win a cash gift of $500 (1st Prize), $300 (2nd Prize) and $200 (3rd Prize). In order to be eligible, participants had to answer all 10 questions correctly and be present on the webinar to win.

If any winners were also verified ABLE account holders, they received an extra $100.

NDI’s Executive Director, Michael Morris, enthusiastically emceed the event, taking webinar attendees through the scavenger hunt questions and responses and then announcing the winners.

Because of a technical glitch, four winners were announced instead of three: David Kelly, David Lutz, Laura Witzig and Jessie Mabry. All four were also ABLE account holders!

David Kelly, our 1st prize winner, has an ABLE account with the Tennessee program. He plans on using the savings in his ABLE account to save for retirement, primarily, but to also build up his emergency fund.

David has paraplegia as a result of a 1987 car accident. He has had a career in the financial field for more than 30 years and is very active with various nonprofits both in and out of disability world.

David says he was very pleased, and surprised, to learn he was the first prize winner. He says it was a great event to showcase the website and that he hopes it achieved what NDI had hoped for (It did!).

He says he enjoys the new NDI website’s ease of use.  As someone who works in the financial sector, he says it’s important to keep up to date with financial wellness and different programs and projects for advocates like himself and others.

David Lutz has an ABLE account with the Tennessee ABLE program and was our 2nd prize winner. He says he will use his ABLE account for long-term planning for future needs and for an emergency fund, now that he is able to save above public benefits asset limits.

David, who has a mental health disability, shared that he would like to restart his blog on anxiety.

His favorite part of the new NDI website is the Washington Insider newsletter, which he says has always been a big highlight for him. Other nice surprises were the free tax prep, archives of webinars and knowing that there’s one place he can go to find information or a lead on where to go. He intends to explore more of the website in the near future.

Laura Witzig’s ABLE account is with the Tennessee program and she says her main financial goal is to put aside whatever she can to finally have access to an emergency fund. She has a mobility disability.

For the scavenger hunt, Laura says she felt confident she got all the answers right and, though she wasn’t expecting to win anything, she put all her effort it into it anyway. That effort certainly paid off as Laura was our first 3rd prize winner!

Laura says that a useful resource section (on a website) should feel like stumbling upon a treasure chest and that NDI’s resources included plenty she hadn’t seen before. She promises to visit the site often and look for new helpful resources.

Jessie Mabry opened her ABLE account in Pennsylvania and plans on using her funds for short-term expenses and saving long-term, possibly for an accessible sailing excursion. When she heard her named called as our second 3rd prize winner, she says she felt thrilled, honored and glad to participate in a fun activity that had such a nice benefit. She says she also got to learn more about NDI, which she wasn’t aware of until opening her ABLE account.

Jessie, who is blind, says she really enjoys personal finance management, so she especially appreciates NDI’s mission.

She is looking forward to taking some of the free courses in NDI’s online classroom on the new website. Jessie says several of the courses seem useful for everyone, not just people with disabilities and those who work with them.

So congratulations again to our winners! We want to thank everyone who participated in NDI’s Share the Love webinar and the scavenger hunt. We appreciate your continued support of NDI’s mission to build a better financial future for people with disabilities and their families.

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