My name is Acienda Yang and I am the Peer Specialist Community Engagement Coordinator for the Wisconsin Peer Specialist Employment Initiative (WIPSEI). I was born in San Diego, California. I have seven siblings: four sisters and three brothers. When I was two years old, my family and I moved to Charlotte, NC, and eventually we made our last move to Wausau, WI. In addition, I also have a pet Turtle named ‘Autumn’ whom I love very much!
I attended the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and graduated with my Bachelor of Art in Criminal Justice. Prior to joining Access, I worked for Winnebago County in various departments such as Clerk of Courts, Human Services and PVHC. Working in various departments have taught me many things, especially the knowledge in court related matters, confidentiality of record keeping, and people going through mental health and substance use etc.
My passion is to use my own lived experience and expertise to support others that are going through mental health and substance use. I truly believe that building trust and connection, listening and understanding others, having self-development, being open-minded and staying authentic are some of the values to overcome difficulties. Everyone deserves to have a voice and be treated with respect to make decisions that are best for them.
In my personal life – I enjoy outdoor activities, trying new foods, karaoke, and spending time with my family on the weekends. When I am not doing any of those, I like to stay home to relax or search up food recipes and cook. One of my goals is to learn how to play the piano again. The sound of the piano is very soothing, and it relaxes my mind and soul – which I love!