Fall 2015
In This Issue 

Dean's Corner
Bergen's Promise is proud to be working toward accreditation with CARF, the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities -- an international organization that establishes guidelines and high standards for quality care.

This demonstrates our commitment to providing quality Wraparound care for you and your family.  We continually seek to identify new providers that align with our philosophy and are dedicated to being an active partner in our team-based, person-centered approach to care.

CARF is considered the gold standard, and we believe Bergen's Promise is a leader in providing  exceptional care management services to our families.  There is a focus on family voice throughout this process, a natural reinforcement of our desire to continue to partner with you...our families to help us improve and expand our services.

As we approach the holiday season, I wish you all peaceful, happy family celebrations.

Dean Pastras, ACSW, LCSW
Executive DirectorNEW

What's New at Bergen's Promise?
Reunion with a Bergen's Promise Graduate at Access Ridgewood '15!

I t was a very pleasant surprise to run into one of our Bergen's Promise graduates at the Ridgewood Community Access Network's  Access Ridgewood festivities this month. Charles Rupprecht of Ridgewood was a tremendous help promoting our Bergen's Promise exhibit! This community event was open to all and focuses on embracing our abilities, disabilities, special gifts and special needs.kendra 

Celebrating Hope, Celebrating Progress 
Kendra's Story

Kendra is a creative, artistic 15-year old that has been able to achieve better control of some challenges through the strengths-based strategies and support she received through her Child and Family Team. Click here to watch her story...

We hope that YOU will consider letting us share YOUR story sometime in the future!

For Families By Families            
Family Support Organization of Bergen County
Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Monthly Support Group
By Grandmother Brenda Crocker

My name is Brenda Crocker and I'm a grandmother raising my grandson. I was asked to put in a few short words for what the group has done for me.

This is so very hard, because it takes so much more than a few sentences to express the help and comfort this group has given me. I have been with the group for a little more than seven years and have been exposed to vast amounts of information.

I have gained so much more than I ever expected since the day I first came to the group. There were speakers and advocates that helped and gave me information to work with my grandson, and there were so many programs that I was able to utilize.

Each month we shared ideas and problems we had faced with schools, teachers and staff. Having an advocate to help during this time meant the world to us. We laughed together, we cried together, we shared joy and sadness, and it has made us stronger as we face the day to day tasks (meetings in Englewood).
This group is so helpful, it's sponsored by the Family Support Organization of Bergen County. They also have classes at their Fair Lawn office which I have attended on a few occasions and some classes are held at night and at times dinner is served.

The Englewood Health Department staff held classes on helping with ways to take care of ourselves, with healthy snacks for the kids as well as the adults. We also met with staff from Kinship Care Services, a program of Care Plus NJ Inc. which helped with information and aid for grandparents raising grandchildren.wellness

Wellness News You Can Use
Friends to Friends Community Church - An Inclusive, Dynamic, Holistic Faith Community for Bergen County Families
Spiritual wellness reflects our ability to experience and integrate meaning and purpose in our life through our connectedness with self, others, art, music, literature, nature, and/or a power greater than yourself. 

Friends to Friends Community Church focuses on inclusivity of all people, with a focus on including people with developmental and physical disabilities into the life of the church.   Pastor Joanne Vansant offers an ecumenical contemporary Christian worship service as well as many community activities for everyone to enjoy times of fellowship, fun and growth in their faith. 

The roots of the church came from work with families of children with developmental and physical disabilities for a Christian education opportunity that their children were not getting in their own programs.  All who attend are encouraged to become a part of the worshipping body by joining in worship or even in worship leadership.

Do you seek a spiritual connection for your child, young adult?  Pastor Joanne is looking to establish a new Christian Education program for families.   If interested in learning more, please contact:  pastorjoanne.friendstofriends@gmail.com or call:  201.652.3952.

Worship Services are on Sunday evenings at 7:00 pm.  Everyone is welcome!
Choir/Bell Choir rehearsal 7:00 pm Mondays.
Bible study 7:00 pm Tuesdays.
The church is located at 303 Prospect Street, Ridgewood.
Talk Straight When it Comes to Social Media  
Recent research and online surveillance has shown that more than half of all teens who use social media admit to sharing personal information such as a cell phone number, school, town and/or their full name with someone that they do not know personally.  Inappropriate use of social media by teens often leads to victimization through identity theft and cyberbullying. Teens are also more likely to engage in risky behaviors to appear popular/ older online. Using social media has many benefits; however, it is important to make sure you and your family are taking the best measures to ensure everyone's internet safety.    

Start by having a frank conversation, using these talking points to guide your conversation:
  • Adjust privacy settings to avoid cyberstalking, or harassment through internet communication.
  • Do not publicly post personal information such as phone number, town, or school.
  • Avoid befriending anyone they have not met in person first.
  • Stay alert: not everything on the internet is true or real.
  • Do not share private information with someone they do not know over the internet.
  • Say something to an adult if they witness cyberbullying.
  • Allow an adult to have complete access to their account.
Help your kids practice using social media safely by also being an active role in adjusting privacy settings and continuously monitoring their activity.  Maybe they have more tech savvy skills, so if that's the case let them teach you some of the benefits of being on social media.   More questions?  Visit internetsafety101.org for more information.

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Stay Connected With Us!

Bergen's Promise
218 Route 17 North, Suite 304
Rochelle Park, NJ 07662
Phone: (201) 712-1170 | Email: communityresources@bergenspromise.org