July 2019  

AIM consumers help stage Wildlife Rockstars shows
Paddy Seymour, who receives services through AIM's TBI Waiver Program, is part of
Wildlife Rockstars, an animal education program operated by Bridges for Brain Injury. They presented two shows at the Arnot Mall this week, entertaining hundreds of people. 

Jeff Miller, a consumer in AIM's TBI Waiver Program, helps present Wildlife Rockstars.

Some of AIM's consumers are involved with Wildlife Rockstars, a wildlife education show run by Bridges for Brain Injury.

They help to present the shows, which feature a wide array of exotic animals, including a ring-tailed lemur, a Parma wallaby, a Giant South American Marine Toad, and a Eurasian eagle owl, just to name a few.

The shows are presented by people who've had brain injuries, and are helpful in many aspects of rehabilitation, said John Truini, wildlife education director for Wildlife Rockstars.

The shows raise awareness of brain injury while inspiring awe and respect for animals, Truini said. The program is run out of Bridges for Brain Injury's locations near Rochester and in Elmira. They present hundreds of shows a year across upstate New York.

The crew includes a handful of people who receive supports and services both through Bridges for Brain Injury and AIM's Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Medicaid Waiver Program, including Paddy Seymour of Waverly and Jeff Miller of Southport. Both were on hand for this week's shows in Center Court at the Arnot Mall.

When asked what they enjoy most about being involved with Wildlife Rockstars, they both said essentially the same thing: They love seeing the reactions of kids who come to the show and see amazing creatures they've never seen before.
Summer day camps for youths offered in Schuyler and Chemung counties 
There are still openings for AIM's summer day camps for youths who have developmental disabilities.

AIM will offer a camp in Schuyler County camp the week of July 29-August 2, and in Chemung County the week of August 12-16. These camps are based at AIM's Watkins Glen and Elmira offices, respectively. 

We'll also offer a tween camp for ages 9-13 in Chemung County the week of August 26-30.

The camps run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day and include lunch and snacks. They feature many educational activities in the community. This year we're planning to visit police or fire departments, do activities involving nature and wildlife, visit businesses to experience what workplaces are like, and do travel training on public transportation systems, among other outings. The camps always end with a picnic with fun games.

These camps are open to youths who live at home and have eligibility for services through the NYS Office for People with Developmental Disabilities. 

Participants should live at home and be independent with personal care needs or escorted by a caregiver or self-directed staff. The camps are either free or billed to OPWDD self-directed budgets.

For more information or to register, contact AIM's OPWDD Youth Specialist Amanda Gitchell at or 962-8225, ext. 210.
Free workshop on health and 
well-being  offered in Elmira this fall  
AIM will host Living Well in the Community, a workshop on health and well-being for people with disabilities, this fall in Elmira.

The 11-week multi-media workshop will be held from 2-4 p.m. on Thursdays. It begins Sept. 5 and ends Nov. 14.

The workshop is for ages 18 and older. It is free and open to the community, and participants will receive gift cards.

Topics include goal setting, building supports, healthy reactions, staying on course, healthy communication, seeking information, eating well, physical activity, self-advocacy, and maintaining improvements.

For more information and to register, contact Ileya Heins at or 962-8225, ext. 241.

The workshop is funded by a grant from RTC: Rural.
Kellie Burrell, Employment Specialist, selected as Employee of the Month
Congratulations to Kellie Burrell, who was selected as AIM's Employee of the Month for July.

Burrell is an employment specialist in AIM's Supported Employment Program, which offers work readiness training; connects consumers with work experiences and employment opportunities at businesses in the community, and provides on-site job coaching and supports.

AIM provides Supported Employment services under contract with two state agencies, ACCES-VR and OPWDD.

"Kellie is very hardworking, friendly and kind to others," one person who nominated her stated. "She has been very busy assisting her consumers with employment and doing assessments with her consumers."

Welcome new hires:

- Erica Covert, Director of OPWDD Services
- Joanne Carlyle, Housing Coordinator


- Mika Starks, OPWDD Direct Support Professional

Current job openings:

- Director of Waiver Services
- Finance Specialist
- Administrative Assistant
- Human Resources Administrative Support
- Employment Specialist
- NY Connects IL Specialist
- Community Living Specialist
- OPWDD Program Specialist
- OPWDD Direct Support Professional
- OPWDD Self-Hire Staff
- Consumer Directed Personal Care Assistants

To view job descriptions and apply, click here
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