Cara Wiggins

Professional Information

DegreeAlthough I do not have a degree that applies to this field, I have been working with individuals with I/DD for several years.
Where did you study?The school of Life and Learning Opportunities.
How long have you worked in the field of ID/DD?6 years
Have you worked in any other interesting/notable positions or fields?I am a 3rd Degree Black Belt and taught Martial Arts for 13 years.  I worked with students ranging from 3 years old to 64 years old.
List any additional pertinent continuing education you have done.I have supported a family member whom experiences autism for several years.
What is your philosophy about your work?My philosophy is that everyone deserves the opportunity to live their best life and I am blessed with the chance support them in that.
Describe a professional moment/event that you are very proud of.When working with one of my first clients, we were discussing sexuality and relationship goals.  The client shared very personal information and then stated “I have never shared this with anyone before.  Thank you for making me feel safe and supported”.
Do you have any professional mentors? If so, describe that relationship.Shanya Luther has been both my employer and mentor for many years.  She has taught me so many things in the time I have known her.  One thing that stands out is that she has taught me how to stay curious and ask questions when working with someone that has behaviors that are difficult.
What are some of your favorite things about working for Among Friends?I love working with teams and clients to connect them with the Behavior Professional that will be supporting them with Behavior Services.  The work we do changes lives and is my passion.  I am so blessed to be able to do what I love.

A little fun information to get to know Cara

What do you like to do outside of work? Any hobbies?I love spending time in nature.  I enjoy camping, hiking, geocaching and painting.
Do you have pets? Tell us about them.In July of 2019, my son and I rescued a very sweet dog.  Her name is Lucy.  Lucy is a Chihuahua / Terrier mix that loves cuddling, playing with squeaky toys and time outside.
Describe your living situation.I live in a quiet neighborhood in SW Portland in a house with a beautiful backyard with my son and mom, whom I provide care for.
Do you have any children? How old are they? Tell us about them.I have a 20 year old son.  His name is Kit.  He enjoys video games, time at the beach and hanging out with friends.
Where are you from originally? What got you to Oregon (or wherever you are right now)?I have lived in Oregon most of my life and LOVE it here.  I was lucky to spend a year in Colorado and really liked it there, but Oregon is definitely home.
What effect did the quarantine have on your personal/work life?The quarantine was very enlightening. It taught me a lot about what is really important to me, like family and friends. I also learned a lot about the people in my life, what their values are and how they treat others when times are hard.
Where is somewhere you’ve traveled? What are some things you liked about where you went? What was that experience like?I was blessed with the opportunity to go to Maui for my 50th birthday.  I loved being able to swim in the warm ocean and snorkeled for the first time.  I saw turtles and incredible scenery.  It was magical.
What was your first concert? How old were you?One one the best shows I have seen is Blue Man Group in Las Vegas. It was an experience I will never forget.
What is one of your favorite books, movies, or bands? Why?Guns and Roses, because they rock and bring back a lot of good memories.
Describe one of your favorite meals.One of my favorite home cooked meals is pork chops, have to be bone in, home made apple sauce and pan cooked asparagus. 

SCORE! is our monthly newsletter highlighting everything we’re doing at Among Friends. You’ll find out the most current information about what we are doing in each of our programs - Training, Behavior Services, Marketplace, and Advocacy and Consultation.

You’ll get links to articles, products, books, resources, and more curated to help you support the people you support.

  • We highlight programs, people, and products that might help you as you support folx.
  • We have calls to action so we can all be a part of creating a community that supports people and their sexual-self determination.
  • We list upcoming dates for trainings including the certification program - and we offer coupon codes and various discounts.
  • And so much more!!!

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