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MAY 2012

In This Issue:
May is for Mental Health!
Early Learning Center Opens!
Have you read our blog?
Staff Awards

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Golf FORE Kids Outing, Monday June 11:  

The 8th annual Golf FORE Kids outing will be held at Siwanoy to benefit all of ANDRUS' programs around the county. Great golf for a great cause! For more information on sponsorships or tickets, contact Kevin Cook at 914.965.3700 x1241. We hope to see you there!

 

Thanks to Our Volunteers!
 
 
The sixth annual A Clean Scene volunteer day was held on the ANDRUS campus, Saturday May 5. Over 60 volunteers joined us for a morning of planting, raking, mulching and painting! A delicious barbeque followed as a thank you for their hard work. We have posted pictures on our Facebook Page, check them out. Thanks to all the dedicated volunteers who lent a hand! 

 

 

 May is Mental Health

Awareness Month!

 

Did you know that one in four adults in America suffers from a diagnosable, treatable mental health condition? That's sixty million people! Yet many people living with a mental health condition never seek or receive help due to stigma, lack of information, cost or the absence of health care insurance coverage.

 

ANDRUS is committed to raising awareness about mental health. We have joined the national effort in this month of May by launching a series of outreach and education programs in the communities we serve. We are highlighting the resources we offer in our mental health clinics in Yonkers, White Plains and Peekskill as well as distributing educational materials to schools and community groups throughout Westchester County.

 

Our commitment to Sanctuary as a trauma-informed treatment approach has grown out of our experiences in working for decades with children and families facing complex challenges of mental health and social stressors. Our emphasis is always on creating a sense of safety in situations of fear and anxiety.  

 

This month we are distributing "Safety Plan" refrigerator magnets to help spread the word that all of us can develop a Safety Plan of special personal steps to take to reduce our stress and take care of our emotional health. For a free magnet contact Judy Wood at 914 965 3700 x1318 or jwood@jdam.org.

 

What can you do to support someone close to you who is showing signs of needing mental health care?

  • Educate yourself about the diagnosis and symptoms.
  • Recognize that a friend or family member may be scared and confused about what to do.
  • Listen carefully and express your understanding.
  • Understand that self-esteem, social support and a feeling of contributing to society can be essential elements in the recovery process.

Early Learning Center Opens!

 

Heavy clouds didn't dampen the spirits of the crowd of 75 gathered for the ribbon cutting at the Andrus Early Learning Center on Thursday April 26. Tuckahoe Mayor Steve Ecklond welcomed the crowd and shared the giant scissors with ANDRUS President and CEO Nancy Woodruff Ment. 

 

Following the ceremony, guests explored The Carter Arts Wing and its children's theatre and adjacent art studio, The Emily McKnight Corry Toy Library (the first in Westchester County!) and then moved on to the spacious classrooms and indoor play area,  ending in the new kitchen and caf´┐Ż for healthy meals and snacks.  Each room elicited gasps of delight at the creative and bright renovation.

 

The AELC provides nurturing full and half-day care and early childhood education for children up to the age of 5. In our new home, ANDRUS is incorporating an infant care program for 16 babies as young as six weeks-- a boon to working parents.

 

Westchester County Legislator Shelia Marcotte of Tuckahoe brought greetings from her colleagues and County Executive Robert Astorino. Kathleen Suss and Heather Petrie of the Concordia Conservatory led a group of AELC children in singing an exuberant welcome to the guests.

 

Saturday April 28, bright skies ensured a large crowd for the ANDRUS "Kick Off for Kids" introducing the new center to local children and families. Sarah Lawrence College interns shared their "pop up gym," Junior League volunteers, organized by Community VP Sonja Gaffney, read stories and shared books with all comers, and also led family yoga and healthy snacking. Members of The Masonic Lodge of Tuckahoe offered CHILD I.D programs for interested families. National retailer, Bob's Discount Furniture, provided a clown and face painting, along with the talent of Kathy Fallon, a songstress ho sang lullabies captured in a gorgeous picture book and CD given as a gift to each child. The excitement flowed into Monday, April 30, the first day of classes in our little friends' new home!

Check out these recent blog posts: 
 
"Bullying: A Different Point of View"
 
The Wall Street Journal's Nick Gillespie wrote a piece suggesting that all this talk about bullying was an over-reaction to a few tragic incidents. I disagree....read more. 
 
"The Gift of Mystery"
 
For some years now, with irregular but still reliable frequency,  ANDRUS has received checks from the same mysterious person..... read more.
 
"You Don't Melt Ice by Putting It in the Freezer"
 

Seems obvious, right? And you don't help those who were dominated, controlled and coerced... by dominating, controlling, or coercing them.... read more.

Staff Dinner 
Had Lots to Celebrate!

ANDRUS Staff representatives proudly accept our certificate of certification as a Sanctuary Agency!

 

The evening's festivities showcased the newest quarterly Julia Award winners, chosen from nominations of staff members who demonstrate these qualities in their work at ANDRUS: Joyful, Unique, Leaders, Industrious and inspiring, and Accomplished achievers.  

 

MAUREEN LYNCH, Teacher, Orchard School Maureen challenges the students but gives them the tools to succeed....Her dedication, focus , and preparedness are prime examples of her leadership qualities.

 

LEANI SPINNER, Peekskill Clinic Manager Leani engages the community, develops relationships, and beats the bushes to ensure that the clinic is meeting the needs of the surrounding community... She manages the clinic with the right combination of compassion and resolve.

 

ROGER BURTON, Milieu Manager, Griffith Hall Roger is always deserving of recognition, but what set him apart this quarter was the way he managed himself and his colleagues through the loss of their teammate, Clinton Mills.... He was pivotal in helping his team move through their grief so they could support the children in their own grief. 

               

ANTONIO ORTIZ, Custodial Worker, Facilities Department Antonio has been here for 7 years and will be retiring on May 25th. It has been a blessing both personally and professionally to have him working with us here at ANDRUS. 

 

Melissa Duquesnay, Payroll Administrator, was honored with the annual Debra Jeanne Snyder Spirit of Sanctuary Award which is presented annually to an indirect care employee whose work requires regular interaction with multiple departments and division staff, is viewed as a knowledgeable resource for the ANDRUS community, and models the seven commitments of Sanctuary.

 

      Congratulations to all!  

About ANDRUS

ANDRUS provides support and treatment for 2,500 children and their families throughout Westchester suffering from emotional illness and trauma. The agency offers prevention, assessment, educational, treatment and research programs that help children and families achieve healthy, stable lives.  ANDRUS has grown from its origins as an orphanage into a premier non-profit mental health, social service and special education provider and resource for Westchester.