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Four years ago, Michael moved into Giannattasio Residence. On his own for the first time, Michael kept to himself, but it didn’t take long for Michael to break out of his shell. Growing increasingly outspoken, Michael connected with his housemates, who are swift to advocate for people with special needs. Michael also developed a friendship with the residence manager, Thomas Hoefel. Tommy has worked at HeartShare and professionally as a DJ for 25 years. Together, Michael and Tommy share a passion for music and for helping others. “I plan to start a business to help people with disabilities become DJs,” shared Michael. With Tommy as his mentor, Michael started playing gigs two years ago and is on the path to fulfilling his lifelong dream. Together, they’ve shopped for new equipment at a DJ convention and researched music business classes. Most importantly, they see eye to eye. “We are real in this house. Tommy and I say how it is and that’s how we learn from each other. I wouldn’t have it any other way,” said Michael.
Learn more about HeartShare and its Family of Services in our 2016 Annual Report.