Winter 2016
In This Issue 

Dean's Corner

With each new year, the team at Bergen's Promise looks forward to all the new opportunities and possibilities that unfold to the benefit of our youth and families.

We are preparing for the unveiling of two different, but equally exciting developments in the Spring.   First, we are growing our team even further as the number of children and families we serve continues to increase.  To that end, we will be opening a second office in Hackensack. 

We are thrilled to also announce the launch of Bergen ResourceNet.  This user friendly web portal will be the centralized depot for families and professionals to find and learn about all health and wellness resources for youth and families in towns throughout Bergen County.   Our Community Resources Department is preparing for the spring launch and will be offering trainings to community based organizations, county committees, and any other programs and/or providers of services for Bergen County youth and families.  You will want to be sure that YOUR programs, groups, events, support groups, webinars, etc. are included and promoted to the benefit of all youth and families!

Stay tuned for details and the Bergen ResourceNet launch this Spring! 

Dean Pastras, ACSW, LCSW
Executive Director News1

  What's New at Bergen's Promise?

Level of Service

We are currently serving  930  youth with 73 of those youth presently enrolled in Behavioral Health Home services as of 1/25/2016.
Do you know someone between the ages of 12 and 21 that 
thinks they know everything there is to know about drugs and alcohol?

Challenge them to CHECK YOUR FACTS! Trivia Game!   

Start your class/group/morning conversation with the CHECK YOUR FACTS trivia question of the day!

The week of January 25th marks National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week sponsored by the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA). Bergen's Promise will run a campaign geared toward youth ages 12-21 that provides a quick exploration into what they know and don't know about drugs and alcohol. 

Each day throughout the last week of January, we will post a trivia question related to drugs and/or alcohol on the News page of our website. When the youth submits an answer to the question, they will be provided the correct answer, links to useful resources to explore more about that topic. They will also have the opportunity to see how their answer compared to their peers that also completed the question. 

If you are a teenager or young adult or know someone who might enjoy playing the CHECK YOUR FACTS trivia this week, please forward and/or keep checking our News page each day for the trivia question of the day!  
Bringing Holiday Cheer to DCPP Youth!

The spirit of giving filled two Children's System of Care partners this holiday season.  Bergen's Promise and the Department of Child Protection and Permanency (DCPP) collaborated to donate toys to DCPP youth ages 1-16 years old.

Bergen's Promise placed 72 "Giving Ornaments" on the wall of our lunchroom for a two week period.  Our team members went 'above and beyond' by contributing many more gifts than the tags noted. This toy drive was especially meaningful since our two agencies share a significant number of youth.

Volunteering our time, talent and treasure provides a sense of fulfillment and happiness, high morale and overall greater satisfaction in life. Studies even show physical and emotional health benefits associated with being charitable, such as reduced rates of stress, and lower blood pressure*.

*Source: Mccoy, Mary. Top 10 Benefits of Charitable Giving and Donations.  MoneyCrashers. Retrieved 12 7 15
Bergen's Promise Team Gives to Others in Meadowlands Basket Brigade

 Bergen's Promise team members volunteered at the 2015 Meadowlands Basket Brigade which helped put a Thanksgiving feast on the table of hundreds of families in Bergen County. On November 22nd, the Bergen's Promise team comprised of staff and their family members, worked alongside over 100 other volunteers in the warehouse of Friendship House, Hackensack to assemble Thanksgiving food trays. 

The group was energized by D.J. music while assembling the care packages consisting of a 10 lb. turkey, stuffing, potatoes, gravy, corn, green beans, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, a pumpkin pie, and Hershey kisses. As the last trays were wrapped, the team members got to do 'The Cha-Cha Slide' among other dances to round out the morning.  Some of the teams also volunteered to deliver baskets to families throughout the county.

The amount of support was so overwhelming for this event that organizers had to turn away volunteers. The event is always held the weekend before Thanksgiving so consider becoming a part of the Basket Brigade in the future! FSO

For Families By Families                
Family Support Organization of Bergen County
Wraparound in Action...
Wraparound is a term familiar to many of us involved with the NJ Children's System of Care (CSOC). The National Wraparound Initiative* includes the following in its definition of the Wraparound Process: "It is a planning process that brings people together from different parts of a whole family's life."  We at the Family Support Organization of Bergen County (FSOBC) are grateful to our many partners in the Wraparound Process.

This Family Corner in this newsletter is an example of the collaborative process between FSOBC and Bergen's Promise in our joint work with families. Additionally, Bergen's Promise has partnered on providing workshop presentations and in advertising other FSOBC events. Most importantly, Bergen's Promise and FSOBC staffs are members together with families on Child and Family Teams.

Other community partners have been vital in the Wraparound Process throughout the year. A special note of appreciation to the staff of Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation of Saddle Brook, Flames of Giving and Safilo USA employees.  These organizations' generosity provided holiday gifts to several families. ShopRite cards donated by Denise Guilbert made for bountiful holiday meals for several families. The regular food donations from Tasty Bagel in Saddle Brook and Domenica's Eatery in Fair Lawn are also appreciated.

The presenters of workshop programs at the FSOBC have offered a great opportunity for families and staff to learn and grow together. These include...
  • Erica Arrieta, and Tara Christensen, Interns, Bergen County Division of Family Guidance Adolescent and Family Treatment
  • Lucien Duquette, Ph.D. 
  • Lismary Espinal, BS, CHES, Health Educator, Englewood Health Department of Health 
  • Sue Heguy, LCSW, CarePlus NJ, Clinician and Trainer
  • Ellen Indoe, MA, CHES, and Amy Faus MPH, CPH, CHES, Wellness Educators, Bergen's Promise Behavioral Health Home
  • Bill Lillius, a Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey 
  • Lydia Mejia, Navigator, Kinship Care Services, a program of CarePlus NJ 
  • Scott Rossig, M.Ed, BCBA and Zach Ikkanda, M.S. Ed, BCABA, AIM Positive
  • Ellen Taner, MA, State and National Parenting Family Education Trainer and Advocate
We are grateful and truly appreciate the collaborative efforts of our many partners as we put Wraparound In Action

Celebrating Hope, Celebrating Progress
Positive Story: Kara

Kara is a 17-year-old girl w ho embraced the Child and Family Team approach and learned about tools to help shift her mindset about many things in her life. She was able to experience successes on her road to  recovery from alcohol and substances. Click here to watch her story...
To watch more stories about our youth's success, visit our Progress Story Page.

We hope that YOU will consider letting us highlight a positive story of a Child and Family Team/Wraparound collaboration leading to positive progress in one of our shared youth!   Whonew

Who's New on O ur Growing Team
Meet the Newest Members of the Bergen's Promise Team:

Kobe Morgan, MBA, MA, LAC, NCC 
Care Manager Supervisor
Imrin Thind, MA, LAC 
Care Manager
Jennifer DiPasquale,  BA
Care Manager

We Are Hiring! 
Join Our Dynamic Team to Wraparound our Families!  
CLICK HERE to see our current career opportunities!wellness

Wellness News You Can Use

Events and Resources
Stay Connected With Us!


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