Samantha Lebron, featured at the Fashion Show, gave a wonderful speech about her experience finding affordable housing:
When you are born with a disability or acquire one later in life, one must learn to adapt. What would happen if our communities adapted with us? I have cerebral palsy, a developmental disability that affect my balance and motor function. I was raised to be as independent as possible. When I became an adult I wanted to gain more independence and find my purpose. However, when it became time for me to leave my family and childhood home I envisioned living in the community with those with disabilities and without. Meeting my neighbors and socializing with them was also important to me. I was extremely excited to partake in this. The time came and I couldn’t find a community that had the resources to create what I envisioned. Almost 18 years later I still have not found that community. It takes the community to build a community. This is what The Hive is trying to accomplish. The Hive’s vision is the vision I want for myself and everyone else. For this to come to fruition we need community engagement from everyone; those with disabilities, their families, and friends. More importantly, builders, developers, businesses and other entities need to also be collaborating us to create these communities. Community gives us all a home and community gives us purpose.