Week of March 22nd, 2021
Thanks to the public's support day-of on March 14th, CLI was able to donate $1000 to the McGuan Park Project.

However, in last week's newsletter, we mistakenly printed that we'd only raised $700 AND we omitted donations from our own Tabitha Wilkens and Jen Swicker from the list (no prophet in their own country, blah, blah, blah).

Thank you Tab and Jen and Tammy and Flickinger Insurance for being part of our community and supporting this project.

It is members like you that make us awesome!

For more information and contact information for all of the City of Norwalk Parks & Recreation Department-- including the Ernsthausen Excercise & Aquatics Center-- visit:

by Shel Silverstein

No one's hangin' stockings up,
No one's bakin' pie.
No one's lookin' up to see
A new star in the sky.
No one's talkin' brotherhood,
No one's givin' gifts.
And no one loves a Christmas tree
On March the twenty-fifth.
Usual Excuses & Apologies:

I got my first shot last week. It was uneventful, which is the best that you can say about anything that is about me + a needle. One example about how these things go for me happened about 7 years ago when my hand was bit after I gave it to a neighbor's dog to sniff and he was not on the same page at all. I slapped a band-aid on it and didn't worry about it until the next morning when it had doubled in size. I went to the doctor and got 2 shots and an oral antibiotic. One of the shots was huge and I swear the nurse was leaning in and pushing with her whole body. After she was done with me, the they left me alone in the room to make sure that there weren't adverse reactions. Meanwhile I had gotten so worked up about getting the shot and so relieved that it was done, that I had a vagal reaction (this is how I learned what a vagal reaction is). I instantly started sweating profusely (think cartoonish spray) and was pretty sure that I was going to throw up. I staggered through the waiting room and sat on the front sidewalk outside to get some fresh air, managed to sit right in some freshly spat-out chewing gum. I then staggered back to the front desk, chewing gum strings stretching behind me and told them that I might be having an allergic reaction. They put me back in the exam room, propped my feet up, gave me two aspirin, and then after I could stand up again-- an ice cube and a blade of some kind so that I could pick the chewing gum off the butt of my jeans before I left. That didn't happen this time. The hardest part was baring my arm while sitting in my car.

The governor has (or shortly will) opened up all age groups for the shot. What's going on in Europe right now is a bit of a cautionary tale. We'll definitely want to keep our guard up, but I think this is going to a big fun spring!
CLI will be pushing back out into the community again soon. We are committed to working with each of our clients to progress toward the outcomes that you want. We know that for some people it's money, for others learning new skills, for other it's social connections. We also know that for some people, it is very important that they have somewhere to go for at least 5 hours, Monday through Friday.

We often get different versions of the question "When will things go back to the way they were pre-COVID". The short answer is that I don't think they ever will-- for 2 reasons.

The first is that this pandemic has changed "normal" and I don't think you can put that back in the bottle. The second is that the reason that CLI had to privatize at the end of 2015 was because the rules had already changed and old-school, workshop-type programs weren't going to be allowed after 2021 anyway. I've always said that I believed privatization to be the easy part, that building a brand-new service delivery model was the hard part.

As we move through the rest of this year and into 2022, I promise that CLI will work with each of our clients to design the services that each wants & needs. For those of you who need at least 5 hours of service 5 days per week, we will work with you to "braid" a full day, full week of services using various service types (STEP, HPC & NMT). We know that it's a little scary ordering customized services vs. a cateteria-style menu, but I believe that together we can make this new normal work better than the old normal for everyone.

Thanks. Keep those hands clean and go play outside!
S.T.E.P. Services
Tabitha Wilkens coordinates client vocational services for CLI. Many of these services are funded through STEPS.

Sometimes these are just old-fashioned fun, community-integrated leisure activities. One example is this picture of Mary, Jill & Brittany-- posing for a quick victory pic-- after officially being recognized as this year's Wednesday Night Women's Bowling League!. It's been a heck of a season, with these 3 having to "bowl-out" on their own, away from the league for about 6 weeks mid-season until Huron County was able to get back to yellow on the state map. It was neat to see how much their absence-- and that of individuals on other leagues-- was felt by the other members of those leagues. One measure of community integration was that the larger group notices you are missing and wants you back. That was definitely true of our league bowlers this year! Luckily, the teams that CLI supports have been able to bowl with the rest of the league for the remainder of the season.
"The place in which I fit will not exist until I make it."

-- James Baldwin
These are the last of the St. Patrick's Day Pics - we promise! Looks like Andy & Nichelle shopped at the same store!
"It is your right to choose what you do and don't do. It is your right to choose what you believe in and what you don't believe in. It is your right to curate your life and your own perspective."

-- Lady Gaga
Would you like to join CLI for some fun virtual activities?
It's a bunch of loud fun!
"Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable."

-- Mary Oliver

Local LLC Update:
James Johnson
For those of you that did not know, John S celebrated his birthday on Friday 3/19. I know this request is a little late, but if you see him on the road, give him a small beep of the horn to put a smile on his face.
This Friday is the big day. Our annual shred day. We will destroy your first 500 pounds of material for absolutely no charge. This is a $125 value. How awesome is that!! You can save 4.25 trees for free. 
It appears as though I have lost my ability to read a calendar. Our next monthly drop off will be Wed. April 7th from 9-2. And yes, that is my final answer.
We completed 21,000 units.
We shredded 9,000 pounds of paper.
We collected 13,000 pounds of cardboard.
We have scheduled 3 new customers for service.
The FREE Good Works Cafe runs every Friday at 11:30 am until they run out of food.

*Donations are accepted & 100% go to
future Fridays.*
"I think the more unexpected something thing is, the more there is to learn from it."

-- Michael J. Fox
The video link here features Tina Evans and Dr. Julie Gentile, professor and chair of psychiatry at Wright State University and director of the Ohio Telepsychiatry Project for DODD. They will introduce the recent initiatives Ohio is taking to support young adults.

You can find more videos by clicking on either the youtube or the DODD website buttons below.