Occupations Newsletter 2008.qxp

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					                  Newsletter Publication
                  of Occupations, Inc.       Serving the Hudson Valley and Beyond                     November 2008


Introducing a Dynamic Collaborative
                         Occupations, Inc. opened their
                    doors in 1963 — 45 years ago — to
                    begin providing services to seven
                    individuals with developmental
                    disabilities and/or mental illness.
                    Today the agency serves over 13,000
                    individuals and offers more than 20
programs and services in over 64 locations. We are one
of, if not the largest provider of services in the Hudson
Valley and beyond, to an ever-growing community of                                       .
people with special needs. Children, parents and families
can receive individual and group counseling, case                 New Dynamics Corporation, a not-for-profit sister
management and many children’s services and child             corporation of Occupations, Inc., provides employment
welfare services. For adults, Occupations, Inc. offers        opportunities for more than 40 disabled and non-disabled
full employment services, transportation, recreation,         employees through its government and commercial
residential opportunities, individual and group counseling,   contracts for products and services, including the
case management, partial hospitalization and intensive        manufacturing of disposable earplugs for the U.S.
psychiatric services at multiple locations.                   Department of Defense.
                                                                  NDC is the third ‘partner’ in Occupations System
                                                              of Services, adding a strong component to this dynamic
                                                              collaborative.
    In December 2007, Occupations, Inc. affiliated
with Family Empowerment Council, Inc. (FEC), an                   Together, these three organizations
organization that was established in 1993 by families of
individuals with developmental disabilities, including the       share one mission — to create hope
late Sally McGlynn. Their purpose was to seek grass-              and choice by assisting people with
roots family involvement in the establishment and
provision of, as well as advocacy for services for their           special challenges in their efforts
children with disabilities.                                           to lead healthy, satisfying,
    Through the affiliation, Family Empowerment
Council is now part of the Occupations’ System of                productive and interdependent lives!
Services with FEC remaining as an independent entity
continuing its mission with its own bylaws. Amy                   Occupations System of Services celebrates the staff
                                                              who meet the needs of our communities, the boards of
Anderson-Winchell was appointed executive
                                                              directors, the community volunteers, the diversity of
director, in addition to her role as executive vice           people receiving services, the settings in which they
president and chief operating officer for Occupations.        are provided, and the broad expertise with which the
The services provided by FEC include service                  agencies work. We celebrate the people who use their
coordination and case management for diverse                  strengths and abilities to overcome the challenges in
populations, mental health family support for families        their lives to create the future of their choice. When
with children who have emotional disturbance, early           this courage and determination is matched with a
intervention, educational advocacy, consumer-directed         compassionate, dedicated, very talented staff who devote
personal care, support and assistance, residential            their careers to this purpose, lives are changed and the
habilitiation and respite services.                           community is a better place.
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp

           A M es sa ge of G re at Im po rt an ce
                                                                                          ics
                                                 sletter, Occupations, Inc., New Dynam
   As you read on the front cover of this new                                    creating one
                                         ent Council, Inc., have joined forces
   Corporation and Family Empowerm                                                this
                                         sion. We are proud of how smoothly
   System of Services, sharing one mis                                         serve with
                                          together to provide the people we
   “blending” has taken place, working                                               ic
                                             ly deserve. As a result of this dynam
   the best possible services that they rich                                                            James B. DeStefano
   collaboration, we are able to:
                                                   services for the ultimate benefit
       • Share best practices in programs and
          of those we serve;
                                               functions and professional staff
       • Share some of the administrative                                                   e
                                                    on of each of our agencies but produc
          that are vital to the day-to-day operati
          significant overhead;                                                        es
                                                 ms and services between the agenci
        • Establish a cohesive plan of progra
                                                   ry duplication.                                         Amy Anderson-
          while avoiding costly and unnecessa                                                                Winchell
                                                                                             mitted
                                                t you will see that together, we are com
     Through this newsletter, we hope tha                                               ity services
                                                h needs are supported by high-qual
     to creating a future where people wit                          community has to offer. We are proud
                                                                                                              of the
     assisting in the ir ability to live fully, enjoying all this                  lts and families in our community,
     positive impact our system of      services has had on the children, adu
                                                   have made as an organization.
     and proud of the accomplishments we
                                                                                                                       eral,
                                                                                current economic situation. With Fed
      As we look ahead to 2009,       we know we will be affected by the                                   most — those
                                                                     ant on subsidies have been hurt the
      State and County    budget shortfalls, those who are reli                                   ke budget cuts, reduce
                                                          others. Please know that we will ma
      with spe  cial needs who are dependent upon                            continue to fundraise through special
      spending and try to find    ways to become more efficient, and                                        people in our
                                                                   lity of the services we provide to the
      events and app   eals, but we will not sacrifice the qua
      communities.
                                                                                                        we can provide an
                                                                 time, talent and financial donations,
      To those wh    o so generously support us with their                         kes prudent use of your contributions.
       integrated system of services     that operates with efficiency and ma                                   Thank you
                                                                         create hope for the people we serve.
       Each and every one     of us, together, helps to continue to
                                                  tely, for those who need us!
       for all that you do for us and, ultima




                                                                                Amy Anderson-Winchell
                                                                                       Executive Director
                       James B. DeStefano                                     Family Empowerment Council, Inc.
                  President & Chief Executive Officer                                         and
                                                                                                                ng Officer
                           Occupations, Inc.                          Exe cutive Vice President & Chief Operati
                                                                                        Occupations, Inc.




Page 2 — Occupations Ink — November 2008
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp
                                  Supporting Students’ Health
                                      Occupations, Inc.        and short term counseling in groups. All services are
                                 and the Middletown            provided with parental consent. They are confidential
                                 Enlarged City School          and held in a safe setting.
                                 District are working              Another component of the Safe School/Healthy
                                 together to help promote      Students initiative is the Middletown Healthy Families
                                 healthier students and to     Program, a national model program designed to help
                                 bring about awareness         expectant and new parents who live in the communities
                                 of mental health-related      served by the Middletown school district. It provides
                                 issues, as well as provide    information and support to promote positive parenting
                                 services and support to       skills, maximize child development, reduce life stresses
                                 pregnant teens. These         and increase the use of preventive health care.
                                 services began in                 Occupations is excited about their new role within
                                 January 2008 as the           the Middletown Enlarged City School District, and looks
                                 result of a Federal grant     forward to increasing awareness about mental health and
                                 received through the          promoting the well-being of pregnant teens and, ultimately,
Safe Schools/Healthy Students initiative, and are provided     their children.
by Occupations’ licensed social workers and family
assessment and support workers who are housed in                  If your child or anyone you know is experiencing
Middletown’s middle schools and high school.                      difficulties coping with stress and/or loss; has an
    One component of these services is the Behavioral           inability to concentrate; is suffering from depression
Health Team, a group of Occupations’ staff and clinicians            and/or anxiety; is having difficulty with peer
with an array of experience in the mental health field.         relationships; is pregnant or a new parent of a child
The team is available to provide students with the              three months or younger; please contact the school’s
opportunity for family meetings, individual counseling             guidance office, social worker, or psychologist.

Merger of Departments Creates One Visionary Team
    To enhance the ongoing efforts by staff to provide         employment opportunities; day training (janitorial, clerical,
vocational and employment services to the people we            maintenance, landscaping, food service, shipping and
serve, Occupations’ Vocational Rehabilitation and Career       receiving); School-to-Work Program; Ticket-to-Work;
Guidance & Employment Services merged in the spring.           Supported Employment; Job Development; and
The new department is now one visionary team working           Employment Training Assistance (ETA). Sherry Dippolito
together. Identified as Employment & Vocational                (692-4454 ext. 131) is coordinating intakes. This one
Rehabilitation Services, it includes an enhanced team          visionary team working together can now provide
intake process; extensive pre-placement training and           people living with disabilities with enhanced, quality
workshops; pre-vocational services; work center                services that can result in their successful employment.

Talent Shows Are a Popular Venue
    The Scotchtown Day Habilitation program put on             residential and
another spectacular talent show this summer. This year’s       FEC’s Connections
theme was “A Tribute to the Beatles” accompanied by a          programs. The talent
room filled with tie-dyed shirts and peace signs. Songs were   shows are a terrific
performed karaoke-style, and a finale of “With a Little Help   opportunity for those
from My Friends” was performed by the entire group.            receiving services
    Following the show, guests joined the performers to        to showcase their
view more aspects of their talents that included displays      talents, have a great
of artwork, wooden models, scrapbooks, portraits and           time, and receive
other arts and crafts.                                         deserved praise from
    Talent shows were also hosted by Occupations’              their audiences!

                                                                          November 2008 — Occupations Ink — Page 3
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp
Recognizing That It Takes a Team!
                                                                 In 2008 the Occupations System of Services
                                                              celebrates the success, dedication and hard work
    Wendi Chason                                            of the Boards of Directors and Staff, and recognizes
                                                             more than 100 employees for 5+ years of service.
    Wendi Chason has been                                           30 years                   10 years
appointed the Director of                                      Marylou Berardino             Richard Aiello
Development & Public                                                                      Donna Aspostolova
                                                                    25 years
Relations of the Occupations                                                                  Randy Blose
                                                                 Harold Dassori
System of Services. Ms.                                                                      Julia Coughlin
                                                                  Linda Dassori
Chason brings over two                                                                     Maria Elena Felli
                                                                  Diana Noger
decades of leadership                                                                         Ellen Figura
                                                                  Sharon Seelig
experience in public relations                                                          Mridula Kamthan, MD
and marketing in the corporate and non-profit sectors.              20 years                Samantha Jones
    As Director of Development & Public Relations, Ms.            Judy Goodell         Manouchehr Lavian, MD
Chason will use her strong skills and experience as a key       Molly Hamilton              Valerie Lehmann
spokesperson to enhance and diversify Occupations’ fund            Steve Jurta          Muhammad Malik, MD
development and public relations activities through the          Barbara Lettow             Marie O'Malley
promotion of the agency’s image, services and presence            Linda Streeter            Juanita Morales
in the Hudson Valley and beyond.                                                              Zita Phillips
                                                                    15 years
                                                                                           Ruth E. Puckhaber
Katariina Hoaas                                              Laura Altieri-Howell
                                                                   Hope Beck
                                                                                           Barbara Raymond
                                                                                            Barbara Russell
     Katariina Hoaas has been                                    William Brown
                                                                                            Louise Schwartz
appointed Occupations new                                         Leigh Cleary
                                                                                              Lisa Stivers
Vice President of Program                                          Jesus Cuzo
                                                                                              Robin Wood
Services. Ms. Hoaas will be                                       Loretta Davis
responsible for the planning,                                      Lori Lentini           In addition, 83 staff
quality and financial oversight                                 Delia McCarthy                members are
of program services, as well                                  Elizabeth McManus            acknowledged for
as the design and development                                     Vicki O’Brien            5 years of service.
of new services.
     In her role as Vice President, Ms. Hoaas will work        Barbara Russell, director of program services at
closely with Occupations’ leadership team to implement         Family Empowerment Council, was recognized
and integrate system-wide growth and improvement              for her extraordinary leadership and commitment
initiatives, as well as professional development and the            to the agency while serving as Interim
implementation of evidence-based practices.                    Executive Director, and now in her current role.

   My Favorite Things                                           Family Empowerment Council Board officers,
        A Poem by “Cool” Jeanne Vasseur,                    Graham M. Skea, Camille Balsamello, Barbara Vaughn
 a participant in FEC’s Day Habilitation Program             and Cheryl Sanza, have received special recognition
 I have true friends, they are Linda she is                    for their extraordinary leadership and dedication.
the best one. We listen to our music she is                    Also honored for their work and commitment are
 my sunshine. Danielle is so sweet and the                  John Guattery, Helen Hawkes, Linda Hicks, Daniel B.
     best boss in the world. Did arts and crafts today.     Hulse, Todd A. Kelson, Esq., Fred S. Levinson, M.D.,
      Roses are red violets are blue, sugar and spice           Dean H. Ouderkirk and Michael Sussman, Esq.
at meals on wheels in Middletown and friendly visitors,      Ms. Balsamello and Ms. Sanza are both honored for
 too. Everyone loves Connections! Everyone loves the        their extraordinary commitment and dedication during
   talent show at the church. I feel lucky to have such                 the agency’s affiliation transition.
 good friends. Apple of my eye, open my heart with a
 special key - Danielle, Julie, Jen, Leticia, Carlos, and       Occupations, Inc., Board members, Ed Lekis
              Karen. They are one of a kind!                 and David Sheib are honored for 5 years of service.

Page 4 — Occupations Ink — November 2008
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp
Returning Veterans Receive Assistance
                                       Occupations hosted     was led by Dr. David Rudd, Ph.D, ABPP, a suicide
                                  the first of a series of    prevention specialist with extensive experience working
                                  suicide prevention          with returning veterans. Dr. Rudd is professor and chair
                                  training programs on        of the Psychology Department at Texas Tech University.
                                  Friday, October 17th, for   The all-day program covered the full spectrum of issues
                                  the treatment of veterans   with the veteran population, including:
                                  returning from active           • A focus on providing a clear theoretical model for
                                  duty. Amy Anderson-                understanding suicidal ideation and behavior with
                                  Winchell, L.C.S.W.,                the veteran population,
                                  executive vice president        • An empirically grounded assessment framework
                                  & chief operating officer          that integrates core clinical competencies and
                                  of Occupations, and                markers of imminent suicide risk,
executive director of Family Empowerment Council,                 • A review of related clinical skills and treatment
welcomed more than 50 mental health leaders to the                   options.
event and thanked all who helped make the training                “Unless we’ve been in their shoes, it is difficult even
possible. “Today’s training will provide clinicians with a    for mental health professionals to completely understand
framework for suicide risk assessment and management          the magnitude of impact serving in active duty in places
with the veteran population, so that we can learn how to      like Iraq and Afghanistan can have on our soldiers,” Ms.
identify those at imminent risk and prevent the tragedy       Anderson-Winchell added. “This training will be vital to
of veterans taking their own lives,” she said.                helping us help them.”
    The training was held at Arrow Park in Monroe, NY,            For more information on accessing help for veterans
a 477-acre wooded resort adjacent to Sterling Forest, and     returning from active duty, call 1-888-750-2266.

              Joint Blood Drive is a Productive Event
                  Occupations and Family Empowerment             The NYBC is a community-based blood collection
              Council joined hands this year to sponsor       and distribution center supplying life-saving transfusion
              the annual blood drive through the New          products to the New York and New Jersey area.For
              York Blood Center (NYBC) of the Hudson          questions on donor eligibility or general information
              Valley. They were able to collect 12 pints      about donating blood, contact the NYBC at 1-800-933-
              of blood in one afternoon.                      2566, or visit www.nybloodcenter.org.

                             Meet Carly
                                 “My name is Carly. I am 22 years old. I just started coming to program 5 days a week.
                             I used to come one day a week. I really liked the camping trip. It was scary at first but
                             turned out to be a lot of fun.”
                                 When Carly began Family Empowerment Council’s Day Habilitation program, she
                             was very shy. With encouragement from staff and other members of the program, Carly
                             finally started attending every day and participating in the programs’ daily activities.
                                 One of the significant events Carly participated in was a weekend camp sleep-over
                             that included hiking up a mountain. She tie dyed a t-shirt that came out beautifully and
 of which she was very proud. Carly and her peers had the opportunity to just be together, play games. . . even go
 on a scavenger hunt. Carly’s active participation in the sleep-over was a tremendous goal for her to achieve. Staff
 praised her for her courage to ‘step outside the box’. What an awesome accomplishment for Carly and the program!
                                                A Job Well Done!
     It’s not easy for someone to break through a barrier like Carly’s shyness. The person has to be helped to feel
 safe and trust in those around her. Family Empowerment’s trained staff experience great pride every time they see
 someone with whom they’re working make positive strides toward a better quality of life for themselves and their
 families. It’s all about Creating Hope!
                                                                         November 2008 — Occupations Ink — Page 5
SY STEM OF SERVICES: OCCUPATIONS • F AMILY EM
Left to right: Tom Glendening, Occupations
Foundation Chair; Eddie Diana, Orange County
Executive; Jim DeStefano, Occupations
Pres./CEO; NYS Sen. Bill Larkin; Darcie Miller;
Bill Kaplan, Kaplan Family Foundation; George
Handler, Occupations Board Member; Joan
Kaplan; Chris White, repesenting Congressman
Maurice Hinchey; Jean Ann McGrane,
Newburgh City Manager; Regina Angelone,
Newburgh City Councilwoman; Amy Anderson-
Winchell, Occupations Executive VP/COO;
Nick Valentine, Mayor of Newburgh; Jim Taylor,
Vision of Hope Gala Chair; Graham Skea,
Occupations Foundation Board Member.


Grand Street
Ground Breaking
    Occupations’ staff, board members, State and City            pledges of over $1 million and extends sincere            Th
dignitaries, and community supporters came together on           appreciation to all those who have contributed to the
Septmeber 12th for a ground breaking ceremony to launch          fundraising efforts and helped get this project off
                                                                                                                          20
Occupations’ Grand Street Renovation Project —                   the ground, including The Elaine                        Ann
“Revitalizing History & Hope” — at 21-23 Grand Street            and William Kaplan Family              Appeal Contribut
in Newburgh. This project is supported by the fundraising        Private Foundation for their
efforts of Occupation Foundation’s $2.5 million capital          generous donation that enabled          Family Empower
campaign.                                                        Occupations to initiate the major                   YESS Pr
    The Grand Street Renovation Project will enable              renovation project, NYS Senator William             & Occup
Occupations to meet the area’s growing service needs by          J. Larkin, KeyBank, Provident Bank, Walden
adjoining two buildings at 21 and 23 Grand Street resulting      Savings Bank, Dr. Thomas B. Glendening,           Family Co
in more than 12,000 square feet of usable space that             Stewart’s Foundation and The Golub                     Serv
nearly quadruples the current capacity to provide critically     Foundation, to name a few.
important mental health and child welfare services to                Contributions are still being actively
Hudson Valley residents. This additional space will enable       sought to reach the goal of $2.5 million.
Occupations to expand two of its most effective programs         Anyone interested in contributing to the
that currently reside at 21 Grand Street in Newburgh.            Capital Project may contact Occupations’
    To date, Occupations Foundation has received                 (845) 692-4454, ext. 101.

                                            Fundraiser Benefits YESS
                                                  On October 2nd, Family Empowerment Council, Inc. hosted their Harvest
                                            Gathering; a fundraiser at the Bull’s Head Inn in Campbell Hall to benefit the
                                            Youth Education School Service (YESS) program. The evening was attended by
                                            parents, local agency supporters, staff and community leaders who are committed
                                            to the vital work of the YESS program. Board Chair, Graham M. Skea commented,
                                            “Family Empowerment deeply appreciates the support the Ludeke Family, the
                                            Bull’s Head Inn, and the community has extended to our agency and YESS.”
                                                  YESS provides educational advocacy, training and mentoring in Orange and
                                            Sullivan Counties. Advocates work to ensure appropriate education for children
                                            and youth from the ages of pre-school through high school. Priority is given to
                                            young people from low income families, including homeless families and youth
                                            living independently; at-risk youth experiencing emotional problems; and youth
    Graham Skea and Barbara Vaughn,         with developmental or learning disabilities. The funds raised help enable this
     members of the board of directors      important FEC program to continue providing an essential service.
Page 6 — Occupations Ink — November 2008
MPO WERMENT COUNCIL • NEW DYNAMICS CORP
     ’08 “Vision of Hope”
       The 2008 “Vision of Hope” Award Dinner & Gala
  sponsored by Occupations Foundation, took place on Saturday,
  September 20th at Anthony’s Pier 9 in New Windsor. Friends
  gathered to honor Sullivan Renaissance and Founder, Sandra
  Gerry, as the recipients of the 2008 Vision of Hope Award.
       Occupations’ services have provided communities with
  a passion and commitment to make a real difference in
  people’s lives. Sandra Gerry has shown that same passion and
  commitment to Sullivan County where, over the last eight
  years, she has positively impacted people’s lives by helping to
  rebuild an entire community. Sullivan Renaissance began as the
  vision of Mrs. Gerry who believes that residents can enhance the
  appearance of Sullivan County while building pride and spirit
   in their community. The evening also celebrated Occupations’
     45 years of service to the community.
         Funds raised          this special event enable Occupations
he Foundation to throughsupport Occupations’ capital project
                      further
                                                                          Sandra Gerry, 2008 Vision of Hope honoree, at the Gala
                                                                              with Jim DeStefano (left) and Tom Glendening.
 08 for renovating 21 and 23 Grand St., Newburgh.
nual               The Occupations Foundation partnered with           president of Taylor Recycling chaired the fundraising
                                  Key Bank, Provident Bank and         initiative of Occupations Foundation. Darrell Supak of
tions Will Benefit              several other community                Granite Associates, LP served as Master of Ceremonies.
 rment Council’s organizations and leaders to sponsor                       For more information about Sullivan Renaissance,
                        the elegant event. James W. Taylor, Jr.,       visit their website at www.sullivanrenaissance.org.
 rogram
pations’
ounseling
                   Celebrating Success is Awesome!
vices                 Antoinette was referred for a mental health evaluation            Gabriela is a 9-year-old girl with
                    to Occupations’ Family Counseling Services through the           multiple disabilities and who must be in
                     Orange County Department of Social Services and                 a wheelchair, who had been receiving
                      Family Court. Placed at Project Life, where she now            her education in a self-contained special
                       resides with her three-month-old daughter, she needed         education class at the Orange-Ulster
                        to make a significant turn-around in her life to gain        BOCES Gibson Road facility. Her
                         custody of her five other children.                         parents, immigrants with limited English
                              This young mother of six, a victim of domestic         proficiency, wanted their daughter to
      violence and substance abuse issues, was struggling with post traumatic        have a more integrated experience.
      stress and major depression. Initially, Antoinette was not committed to        For two years prior to contacting YESS
      receiving the mental health treatment services she needed. She felt            the family had been unable to convince
      hopeless and helpless.                                                         their district’s Committee on Special
          Through work with her clinical therapists, Katie Helpley & Ana             Education that a least-restrictive
      Oni-Eseleh, receiving pharmacological services for depression and her          environment was more appropriate for
      own determination, Antoinette began to show progress. She is now               their child.
      attending parenting classes and group discussion for substance abuse,              In June, a YESS advocate was able
      and is committed to attending her clinical sessions. On her last visit to      to assist the parents in successfully
      Family Court, the judge was impressed with the turn-around she has             promoting a home district program.
      made with her life and granted Antoinette another chance to potentially        Gabriela currently attends a local
      receive custody of her other children.                                         elementary school. Her school district
          With assistance from Family Counseling Services of Occupations,            now supports this plan as an opportunity
      Inc., and other community support services, Antoinette is now hopeful.         to embrace a least-restrictive environment
      She’s empowered and feels in control. She’s the captain of her own             and to integrate children with disabilities
      ship, setting sail on the road to recovery.                                    into their natural community.

                                                                                  November 2008 — Occupations Ink — Page 7
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp
’08 Pro-Am Drives In Community Support
    This years Pro-Am was another great success for                   The Occupations 2008 Pro-Am was sponsored in part
Occupations, with over 100 golfers and 26 Regional Golf           by the Warwick Savings Foundation, WPDH, 94.3/97.3
Pros gathering at The Golf Club at Mansion Ridge in               The Wolf, Time Warner Cable, Dana Distributors,
support of Occupations’ major fundraising efforts.                Johnstons Toyota, USI Insurance, Safina Office Products,
WPGA Tour Pro, Cindy Rarick, joined PGA Tour Pro                  and E&A Contracting. Planning is well underway for the
Mark Lye this year. Together they shared some helpful             2009 Pro-Am Tournament. Call (845) 692-4454, ext. 101
hints during the morning golf clinic and also out on the          to reserve your foursome!
course throughout the day.
    Event Co-Chairs, Chuck Benfer, General Manager of
Cumulus Broadcasting, and Fred Dana, Vice President of
Dana Distributors, presented the Pro-Am cup to the top
foursome from Laborer’s Local 17 — Todd Diorio, Jr.,
Anthony Maio, Vic Mandia and Dan Jackson — pictured
here with their regional golf pro, Larry Rupp of Osiris
Golf Club. Benfer and Dana added more friendly
competition this year by dividing the field into two teams
— Team Lye and Team Rarick — each consisting of 13
foursomes. At the end of the day, it was Team Rarick
who brought in the lowest team scores and received the
Team Challenge Trophy.
    The winning golf professional was Andy Inman of
Belmont Golf Complex in Ridgefield, Connecticut.

Local Banks are Very Supportive
   Occupations System of Services is grateful for the             part in this community-
ongoing financial support of these local banks:                   supporting annual event.
Provident Bank • TD Bank North • Walden Savings Bank                  Over 20 members of the
              Warwick Savings Foundation                          KeyBank team volunteered
           KeyBank, Hudson Valley Division                        to help with landscaping,
   KeyBank Helps “Clean Up” — This past spring                    planting and tidying up
KeyBank employees went out into the community to                  three primary Occupations
work on projects that would benefit a variety of nonprofit        sites in Middletown and    Lillian Rowe and Gabi Gillespie
organizations. Bank locations closed at 12 Noon to take           Newburgh. Thank you!         get ready to do some raking.


                                            Finally, A Home of Their Own
                                                This past June, Carole Prieto’s dream of owning her own home came
                                            true. She and her 12-year old daughter, Serena, packed up their belongings
                                            and moved from their tiny one-bedroom apartment where they had lived for
                                            eight years, into their first house. Carole and her daughter receive assistance
                                            through FEC’s Service Coordination program, a service dedicated to helping
                                            individuals and families with the choices they have the right to make, as
                                            well as identifying the services that are available to them and how to access
                                            those services.
                                                With help from FEC Service Coordinator, Deborah Figueroa, and the
                                            NYS Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities
    Serena shows off their new house key    (OMRDD), Ms. Prieto received a $30,000 grant through the NYS OMRDD
     to (left to right) Deborah Figueora,   Home of Your Own (HOYO) Program. Through USDA Rural Development
           Amy Anderson-Winchell,           she has met eligibility requirements for an affordable interest rate of 1%.
     and new homeowner, Carole Prieto.      Congratulations, Carole, on achieving your dream.
Page 8 — Occupations Ink — November 2008
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp
Sharing a Vision with the Community
                      Sharing a passion and vision for
                  making a difference in people’s lives,
                  Occupations recently assisted Sullivan
                  Renaissance with a portion of its “Rails
                  to Trails” project located west of
                  Woodridge. The initiative, led by Helen
                  Budrock, community organizer for
Sullivan Renaissance, has been an on-going project
involving groups of volunteers in Hurelyville, South
Fallsburgh, Mountaindale and Woodridge. Occupations’
staff participated by helping to smooth out portions of
the trail and fix areas with drainage problems.
    Joe Sustack, Occupations facility manager, stated,            Occupations facility manager Joe Sustack operates the heavy
“It was an honor to be able to assist Sullivan Renaissance        equipment to improve drainage on the “Rails to Trails” site.
with their beautification efforts. Their staff and volunteers
were great to work with and appreciated our help.
We look forward to assisting them again in the future.”

Putting Emotions in Motion
    Every Monday evening a group of individuals with                Each week members are
developmental disabilities and those who may be                 asked to share any of their
experiencing difficulty expressing their emotions, gather       experiences where they have
in the Arthur D’Addazzio conference room at                     difficulty expressing their
Occupations’ New Windsor site. The group session,               emotions. Using role-playing,
better known as Emotions in Motion, is conducted by             ice-breaking techniques, and
Linda Certo, a licensed therapist, whose goal is to enable      even taking responsibility for
each group member the ability to demonstrate insight,           helping to run the group, participants learn to demonstrate
social awareness, self control and increased abilities for      support, empathy and openness with themselves and each
self expression.                                                other. The experience continues to be a great help to all!


                              Meet Bey
                                 As a young man Bey struggled with emotional issues, learning disabilities, and
                              experienced periodic psychiatric hospitalizations. He spent much of his free time playing
                              basketball and football with friends; two sports he is very passionate about and activities
                              that help him deal with some of the challenges he faces.
                                 Bey began receiving vocational training from Occupations through the BOCES
                              school-to-work program when he was 16-years-old. After graduating BOCES, Bey
                              wanted more for his life. He wanted a job, his own apartment — some independence.
                              He also needed job training, life skills training, guidance and overall support.
                                 With the help of Vocational Rehabilitation, Case Management, Clinical Services and
                              Supported Employment, Bey is very proud of the accomplishments he has made over the
                              years. Today, he has a part-time job at Woodbury Common, works part-time at the
 Occupations’ work center in Scotchtown, lives in a community residence, and has become a great grill chef!
     "Everyone at Occupations has been patient with me. It has been a rocky road but I’ve made it through the hard
 part. I look at it as a preparation for life. It makes me feel great, and also emotional. I have never had people feel
 that way about me before so it was, in some ways, unexpected,” Bey said.
     Bey’s ultimate goal is to have his own apartment and a steady full-time job. He is now learning to manage his
 finances and to cook and clean — the skills he needs to prepare him to live independently. “I’m thankful to the staff
 — Sue, Chubby, Barbara, Carol, Jill, Andy, Maria, Diana, Harry, Lois — for helping me get where I am today.”
                                                                           November 2008 — Occupations Ink — Page 9
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp
Congratulations to Two Fine Ladies!
    At the National Association of Peer Specialists 2nd          Frances began as a consumer in the workshop in
Annual Conference, Terry Benkovic, consumer case             2006, became a pieceworker in 2007 and was promoted
manager for Occupations, was presented with the “Go          to Production Supervisor in 2008. She now manages an
Getter/Peer Specialist of the Year” Award. This award        entire production line.
recognizes a peer specialist who has made exemplary
contributions to the profession and who, through their
position, has helped foster growth of peer specialists in
mental health systems.
    Terry has used her own personal recovery experience
to inspire others. She routinely speaks to groups and
serves on committees where she has proven herself to be
an effective advocate for peer support.
    Frances Hoffman, floor supervisor at Occupations’
New Windsor work center, was honored in October 2008
at the Hudson House Annual Vocational Dinner and
presented with their Lifetime Achievement Award.
Frances was recognized for her contributions to Hudson
House and also for the incredible accomplishments she
has made throughout her employment at Occupations.               Frances Hoffman               Terry Benkovic

Danny Washington’s ‘the man’!
     Last March, Sherry Dippolito, vocational counselor      Washington’s (a/k/a “The
for Occupations, received a phone call from a Newburgh       Butterfly”) honor.
Free Academy (NFA) guidance counselor who began the               Working together with
conversation by saying that she was aware of the need        the NFA Counselor,
for confidentiality and that she would not be calling me     Occupations’ staff made
if it were not very important to her “students”. The         sure Danny was at the
Guidance Counselor explained she was calling about a         yearbook dedication/
special honor for Occupations’ own Danny Washington.         celebration where the
     Danny Washington (a/k/a “The Butterfly”) has attended   students honored him with
Occupations’ workshop program since 1987 and has pro-        a speech, a plaque and a
duced a tremendous quantity of staplers and earplugs. In     copy of the 2008 yearbook. They had
addition to a strong work ethic, Danny has another passion   each signed the yearbook ahead of time,
— the sporting events, pep rallies and student events at     honoring Danny with their individual
NFA where he is truly admired by all. Danny spends many      special thoughts.
evenings and weekends at these events. In the students’           Congratulations, “Butterfly”.
eyes he is a tireless supporter; a fan who supports the      You are an inspiration to all with your
teams whether they are up or down, winning or losing.        tireless commitment, support and
That would explain why the NFA Senior Class of 2008          ‘can-do’ attitude — in the NFA
unanimously voted to dedicate their yearbook in Danny        community and at Occupations!

To the Pumpkin Patch
    A perfect way to spend a fall day — visiting Pierson’s
Farm in Otisville, which is just what a group from FEC
recently did. They rode to the pumpkin patch to select
that special one, went through the mazes of hay bales
and very tall corn stalks, then visited with the farm
animals for a few minutes of petting and talking to them.
It was a special day enjoyed by all who were there!
Page 10 — Occupations Ink — November 2008
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp
WEL Foundation Grant Gets to Work
    FEC received a $25,000 grant from the WEL                     The first time Daniel went to his riding lessons he
Foundation to be used to assist the needs of children with    had some difficutly with the transistion to the riding
Autism and their families. This generous donation has         center because it was new to him. Daniel refused to wear
been used to provide supplemental services related to         his riding helmet and became extremely agitated as he
Autism such as specialty diets, equipment and                 had become overstimulated with the new situation.
communications tools. The funds are managed through               Daniel’s mom Ingrid bought him back for his second
the Family Empowerment Project (FEP), a program that          riding lesson and he transistioned much more easily. He
provides financial assistance for supplemental goods          was able to put on his riding helmet and actually sat on
and services that are not otherwise funded but that are       the horse for a short period of time.
identified by the family as being crucial to maintain or          Ingrid bought Daniel back to Winslow for his third
improve the quality of life of their developmentally          riding lesson and he was excited that he was going to be
disabled family member.                                       riding the horse. He quickly put on his riding helmet
    Daniel Kostycz is an adorable 9-year-old boy who          very happily rode the horse for 20 minutes — laughing
has Autism. Daniel’s mom, Ingrid, wanted him to try           and smiling the entire time. Ingrid and Daniel’s peer
therapeutic horseback riding lessons to help address his      mentor, along with his riding instructor, were incrediably
sensory processing delays. The $25,000 Wel Foundation         happy to see how much Daniel was loving this new,
grant gave FEC the funding for Daniel to try therapeutic      therapeutic experience. Ingrid said Daniel now looks
horseback riding lessons at Winslow Therapeutic Riding        forward to riding again each week and has embraced this
Center in Warwick, New York.                                  activity that is an important part of his therapy.

Barbecue with a Country-Western Theme
    The law firm of Dupee & Monroe hosted a County                Country Western music was performed throughout
Western Barbeque on July 5th to benefit Occupations           the day by The Wood Hobo Band, Freddies Last Stand,
Foundation, at their newly renovated offices in Goshen.       and Copper Creek. Radio personalities from 97.3 THE
Over 100 guests showed up throughout the day, some            WOLF were on location in support of the event and to
dressed theme-appropriately in cowboy hats and boots.         help entertain the crowd. Thanks, Dupee & Monroe!


                             Meet Yolanda
                                  Yolanda was a member of the first group receiving training through the Employment
                              Training Administration (ETA) program that began in September 2007 as a collaborative
                              effort between Occupations, the Orange County Department of Social Services and the
                              NYS Department of Labor. It is a ten-week training program for individuals on public
                              assistance looking to get training and experience in the direct care field.
                                 Yolanda was receiving public assistance, had dealt with depression and was a victim
                              of domestic violence. “I had a lot of disasters in my life,” she said. Although she was
                              familiar with Occupations as a recipient of mental health treatment services for her
                              depression, she had never worked with the developmentally disabled/special needs
                              population before and was very unsure of her ability to do so. However, she had the
                              passion and patience to help people, and that was a perfect fit. Yolanda ran into a few
 barriers during the first weeks of training — work/life balance struggles and her lack of confidence because of her
 age. She thought she was too old to start something new. With mentoring and guidance from Occupations’ staff and
 support from her family, Yolanda realized her goals were attainable. Thus the barriers had been removed.
      “I would never have imagined working for a corporation like this, being a Pre-Voc Specialist, not in a million
 years. To help someone and see their progress is amazing to me. I’m just one person in this big world called
 Occupations, trying to make a difference. Occupations is the turning stone in my life. It has taught me how to love
 a person who is not like me, how to respect another’s feelings, and how to be confident and self-sufficient.”
      Yolanda is creative, compassionate and energetic. She’s a natural fit for a pre-voc specialist, enjoying people at
 all levels. Occupations is lucky to have her!
                                                                         November 2008 — Occupations Ink — Page 11
System of Services: Occupations • Family Empowerment Council • New Dynamics Corp
 ‘The Jungle’ is Closed But Not Forgotten
      After a decade of service the New Dynamics Corporation (NDC) contract at the Enlisted Dining Facility at
  theUnited States Military Academy at West Point came to an end on September 30th. The facility was created to
  give West Point enlisted soldiers and their guests a place of their own with a more homelike atmosphere and less
  traditional installation meals. With the declining economy, and the need to cut government spending, this closure
  was just one more sign of the times.
      For New Dynamics this Ability One contract created employment opportunities for people with disabilities
  that resulted in them being able to provide a high level of customer service. When the contract commenced in
  1998 the requirements were to serve as food service attendants to the Enlisted. Once West Point had experienced
  several years of high quality professional services, NDC was also awarded the cooking requirements. These
  contracts provided high paying jobs with benefits and included a variety of work experiences for cooks, cashiers,
  janitors, warehouse, and food service attendants.
      The facility, fondly know as the Jungle, is now closed, but all that it came to mean to so many of the NDC
  work staff has become a permanent part of who they are.


A Wide Range of Services are Available
               Occupations, Inc.                                       New Dynamics Corporation
  Services are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week      You can purchase the same products being supplied to
               by calling 1-888-750-2266.                   the federal government which are manufactured by
• Service Access Center       • Clinical Services           people with disabilities. Your purchase provides
• Rehabilitation Services     • Transportation              employment opportunities to individuals with severe
• Services for Children and Adolescents                     disabilities, allowing them to lead productive lives in the
• Community Outreach Services                               community. Contact Sales at 1-800-925-3421.
• Career Guidance and Employment Services                     • Single & Two Color Foam Earplugs
    Family Empowerment Council, Inc.                          • Staplers & Brass Stencils
    Services are available by calling 845-343-8100
             or toll free at 1-888-343-8181.                   MATCHING GIFT OPPORTUNITIES
• Early Intervention           • Service Coordination               Check with your company to see if they
• Educational Advocacy         • Respite                                   have a matching gift program.
• Family Empowerment Project                                    Your gift to Occupations or Family Empowerment
                                                                  Council could be matched, or possibly even
• LEARN (Residential/Habilitation)
                                                                    double-matched through your employer.
• Connections Day Habilitation
• Network - Family Support
• Consumer-Directed Personal Care Services (Direction)         Include Occupations, Inc.
                                                                in Your Estate Planning
                    A DYNAMIC                                       Planned gifts are deductible contributions that
                  COLLABORATIVE!                                do not significantly affect current finances or after-tax
                                                               income, and are a wonderful way to make a long-lasting
                                                             contribution and ensure the quality of life for those we serve.
                                    .                             Planned giving may be made through gifts of cash,
                                                                          real estate, bequests, life insurance,
                                                                        appreciated stock and/or trust annuities.
                                                                For more information, contact the Development Office
                                                                            at (845) 692-4454, Ext. 101.

                                Occupations System of Services
                     c/o Occupations, Inc., 15 Fortune Road West, Middletown, NY 10941
                                              (845) 692-4454
            www.occupations.org         www.familyempowerment.org          www.newdynamics.net
Page 12 — Occupations Ink — November 2008