News at RCIL
Issue 9 March 2021
RCIL Status Update
RCIL is open, but our doors are not. RCIL cares about you and the health of our staff and community. We are doing our part to help stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

RCIL adapted quickly and has been able to continue providing services without any interruption! Staff are still working and can be reached by phone or email.

RCIL's main number is 315-797-4642 or toll-free at 1-800-627-2981.

LIFE at RCIL Welcomes New Executive Director
Photo of Isabelle Alexander Klaboe

The Resource Center for Independent Living (RCIL) is excited to announce the appointment of Isabelle Alexander-Klaboe as the new Executive Director of Living Independently is for Everyone at RCIL (LIFE at RCIL).

Moving from Long Island to Central New York in 2018, Mrs. Alexander-Klaboe has 15 years of professional experience in management, sales, and customer service with a large focus on community engagement and relations. Working in community relations for the New York Blood Center and Boscov’s, she recognized that there was a need in the local nonprofit community for enhanced community engagement.
In her new role as Executive Director, Isabelle will work directly with our committed Board of Directors, staff, individuals with disabilities, and community partners to further the agency’s mission of ensuring equal access and participation in our community for all individuals with disabilities. “I believe in helping others, and the work RCIL does to advocate for individuals with disabilities reflects my values. Joining LIFE at RCIL gives me the opportunity to make a difference by creating a lasting effect in our community. I hope to enhance public awareness on the positive impact our services have on the lives of others” said Mrs. Alexander-Klaboe.

Mrs. Alexander-Klaboe attained an Associate degree in Visual Arts and Media at SUNY Suffolk County Community College and then went on to receive a Bachelor’s degree in Business, Management, and Economics, Concentration in Marketing from SUNY Empire State College.

Mrs. Alexander-Klaboe looks forward to her new role and working with our community to further improve the lives of individuals with disabilities by advocating for equal access and opportunities.

Please join us in welcoming Isabelle to her new role as
Executive Director of LIFE at RCIL!

LIFE at RCIL Announces
New Office Location in Amsterdam
Window hanging sign with a moving truck and text reading we have moved
LIFE at RCIL in Amsterdam is excited to announce that our office has moved to a new location!
131 Maple Avenue Extension
Amsterdam, NY 12010

Open Monday through every other Friday from 7:10am to 4:00pm; closed every other Friday.

The RCIL office is open and fully functioning, but due to COVID our doors are not yet open to the public. 

Staff can be reached by phone or email. The main number is 518-842-3561.

CARES Act (IL) Funding
Living Independently is For Everyone at RCIL (LIFE at RCIL) is committed to assuring you have the services and support you need to live independently. Disruptions caused by the Pandemic pose additional and sometimes more significant challenges for individuals with disabilities who rely on home and community-based services to maintain that independence.

If you are an individual with a disability or the parent of a child with a disability experiencing Pandemic-related disruptions due to school closures or loss of employment, you may be eligible to apply for CARES Act IL Funds. This assistance is intended to provide help, where no other source of funding for the needed service, supply, or equipment can be identified. 

If you are already working with an RCIL/LIFE staff person, let them know you are interested in hearing more about the CARES Act Fund and to complete an application if eligible.

If you are not yet benefitting from services offered through our agency, including the CARES Act Fund, call one of our locations nearest you for more information and assistance.
 Utica – Gene Hughes  (315) 368-5625
Herkimer – Donna Gillette  (315) 866-7245 Ext. 5800

Alzheimer's Caregiver Support Initiative at RCIL in Amsterdam Goes Virtual with Events
The Alzheimer's Caregiver Support Initiative at RCIL in Amsterdam hosts a variety of events throughout the year for individuals with Memory Loss and their Caregivers who reside in Fulton and Montgomery Counties.

The COVID-19 Pandemic made it unsafe to continue hosting in-person events, however the need for individuals with Memory Loss and their Caregivers to be able to enjoy time together by participating in these joint enrichment events only grew stronger as the pandemic continued.

Events are continuing virtually. Prior to the event program staff deliver all of the supplies that are needed to participate in the event, along with lunch, to the participants. Then step-by-step guided instructions are provided over Zoom. Below are examples of some of the projects that have recently been created during the Zoom events. All upcoming event details and RSVP information can be found on the Facebook page.

All events are free and supported (in part) by a grant from the New York State Department of Health. 
Fall flowers arranged in a beautiful Turkey Vase
Centerpieces created during a November 2020 virtual workshop
Kissing ball made using pine branches tied with a red plaid ribbon
Kissing Balls created during a January 2021 virtual workshop
Vertical wooden sign with dark red letters spelling out the word LOVE with a heart for the O
Wooden Sign created during a January 2021 virtual workshop
NY Connects Can Help Individuals Locate Pandemic-Related Services and Supports
As we enter 2021, Living Independently is for Everyone at RCIL (LIFE at RCIL) wants to ensure that individuals know how to locate available resources, including pandemic-related services and supports. NY Connects is prepared to provide free information and assistance to anyone. NY Connects is able to assist individuals in finding and determining what programs and services they might be eligible for; including but not limited to:
  • Locating food distribution sites (community members can call NY Connects staff at 315-272-2969 or complete an independent search of the NY Connects Resource Directory, which includes a Statewide Map of Food Pantries and can be accessed at:;
  • Finding supports for landlords and tenants;
  • Understanding insurance options; Medicaid, Medicare, and navigating the New York State of Health website to obtain coverage; and
  • Connecting individuals with reliable and knowledgeable professionals specializing in Long-Term Services and Supports.
LIFE at RCIL NY Connects staff are available at 315-272-2969 between the hours of
8am – 4pm Mondays-Fridays. NY Connects is your link to long-term services and supports, including pandemic-related needs and assistance. You can also visit the resource directory online at 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Living At Home, Not In A Home.
Choice. Independence. Safety.
Independent Living Centers (ILCs) across New York State are working together to ensure that New Yorkers know they have choices and options about where they want to live. The COVID-19 pandemic has illuminated problems that have existed in New York’s nursing homes for years, including understaffing and poor infection control. There are programs and services available to help seniors and individuals with disabilities remain living in their own homes and communities, as well as helping individuals safely move out of nursing homes and other long term care institutions and back into the community.

Nursing Homes and Group Homes are not the only option. “New Yorkers need to know that there are a variety of supports and services that can help them live at home. We’ve witnessed during the pandemic how dangerous nursing homes can be, and there is no reason people need to end up in a nursing home,” said Lindsay Miller, executive director of the New York Association on Independent Living (NYAIL).
RCIL is committed to ensuring that the rights of individuals with disabilities are respected, and that includes their rights to independence; making their own choices and choosing where they want to live. If you would like to discuss the programs and services that are available to help you or a loved one continue living independently, or move back home if in a facility, please give RCIL a call at 315-797-4642. You can also visit our website at