Only one month until the Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community!

We only have one month to go until the Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community on May 20 at HACC's Harrisburg Campus.

We know many of our friends eagerly await this tremendous and fun day.  Some people plan for it all year.  Will you join us and support the individuals we serve with intellectual and developmental disabilities?

Highmark Blue Shield kindly underwrites all costs of the walk.  That means all donations for the walk go 100% to participating nonprofits, such as our Arc.

To access our fundraising page, please click HERE.  There are many ways you can support us.  You can register as a walker, create a team of walkers, join a team, and/or donate either directly to The Arc of Dauphin County or to a participant who has signed up in support of The Arc.

If you would rather use a hard copy Walker Donation Form, please click HERE.  We simply ask that you complete and return this form back to us on the day of the walk with all collected donations.

To access a hard copy Walker Registration Form, please click HERE.  Hard copy Registration Forms must be returned to Sam Primak, The Arc's Director of Advancement, by Monday, May 15.  They can be sent to or 2569 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, PA 17103.

Any questions regarding registration or donations can also be directed to Sam at 717.920.2727.

There are some great benefits to donating!  Official kiwi-colored 2017 Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community t-shirts are given to every person who donates or raises at least $30!  Also, walkers who sign up by May 1, 2017 will receive a ticket voucher to a future City Islanders soccer game!  Vouchers will be distributed at the walk.

Highmark is also offering a number of flash challenges leading up to walk day.  Stay tuned for more information!

Remember, on the day of the walk, registration is scheduled to begin at 7:45 AM.  The 5K walk will start at 9 AM, and the one-mile fun walk will begin at 9:15 AM.

We are counting on YOU to support our mission to enhance quality of life for individuals with special needs and help us reach our fundraising goal!   
Craig's Corner
A Message from our President and CEO

Become a member of The Arc of Dauphin County!  In fact, you are already a member if you contributed $50 or more to The Arc during our Campaign For Best Lives back in November, December and January!  If your contribution was less, good news!  You can still be a member by sending in the difference.
Membership helps to ensure that we are able to reach as many lives in the community as we can and help them to achieve the best life possible.  Membership at The Arc does one thing: Ensures that we are able to reach out to our community of underserved citizens with special needs.
Those who are already members will receive their membership card by the end of May. We offer a number of membership levels:
  •  Charter: $50 or more for one year
  •  Charter-Supporter: $135 or more for one year
  •  Charter -Partner: $500 or more for one year
  •  Charter-Sustainer: $2,000 or more for one year
  •  Charter-Champion: $5,000 or more for one year
  •  Charter - Arc Angel: $10,000 or more for one year
While becoming a Charter Member builds a strong foundation for our Arc, there are some benefits to members at certain levels. For example:
Charter Partners and up get to come to our monthly dances at no cost simply by showing a current membership card.  There are other "perks" as well such as members' only events (a members' only reception is being planned for the fall, for example).  From time to time, as special opportunities arise for our members, they will receive a special member's notice.
Our Advocate services will soon be "fee for service", but if one is a Charter member at any level, there is no charge - another membership benefit!
If you do not receive a membership card by the end of May, please contact our Membership Manager, Matthew George, because that means your card was either lost in the mail or our records may need to be updated.  Matthew can be reached at or by calling 717.920.2727.
We are very happy to answer the call of many of our friends, supporters and consumers who have asked, "Am I a member of The Arc of Dauphin County?  If not, how do I become one?"
Now, you can indeed become a CHARTER MEMBER of The Arc of Dauphin County, knowing that your membership does a great deal of good in the community.  Thank you for your generosity and strong support of The Arc of Dauphin County.

10th Annual Family Fun Day at the Faith Into Action Family Festival
The Arc partnering with Harrisburg First Assembly of God Church to offer major, fun-filled experience

The Arc of Dauphin County has recently
Saturday, July 15 from 12 PM to 4 PM on the grounds of Camp Curtin Academy, 2900 N. 6t Street, Harrisburg, PA 17110
announced the 10th Annual Family Fun Day on Saturday, July 15 from 12 PM to 4 PM on the grounds of Camp Curtin Academy.  This year's event will be bigger than ever thanks to a partnership with the Harrisburg First Assembly of God Church and other congregations.
The partnership stems from a former Arc staff member's suggestion to speak with the church about their annual Faith Into Action Youth Conference and Family Festival, which is a grass-roots effort organized by a team of congregations from many denominations in Harrisburg and Lancaster.  During the week of July 10-16, students from several area congregations perform community service projects in the Harrisburg area, and the conference culminates in a family festival on the grounds of Camp Curtin Academy.
When The Arc's Family Fun Day Planning Committee met with Melissa Stricker-Cook, Special Events Coordinator at Harrisburg First Assembly of God Church, their original intent was to seek advice and ideas that could be used to help create a bigger and better Arc Family Fun Day experience.  However, the discussion quickly started shifting focus to a potential partnership, and by the end of the meeting, both parties decided to combine the two events, re-branding it as The Arc of Dauphin County's Family Fun Day at the Faith Into Action Family Festival.
"We are so excited to be partnering with Harrisburg First Assembly of God.  Throughout our discussion with Melissa, we began to realize that it was only logical to bring our two events together and create a grand
9th Annual Family Fun Day - August 2016
spectacle for our consumers, supporters and the whole community to enjoy.  We're grateful that they've been so open to including us, and I think this is going to be the start of a very long relationship," said Craig George, President and CEO of The Arc.
The event, which is free and open to the public, is expected to draw over 1,500 attendees, but there will be plenty of fun, activities and entertainment to keep everyone smiling and occupied.
"Last year's Family Fun Day was a huge success for The Arc, but this year is going to be amazing.  We're going to have live entertainment, tons of food, games, prizes, face painting, a petting zoo, pony rides, inflatables, an obstacle course - the list just goes on and on.  It really is going to be something you don't want to miss," said Sam Primak, The Arc's Director of Advancement.
While more details are forthcoming, there are plenty of things you can do to help make this year's Family Fun Day at the Faith Into Action Family Festival even greater.
"We will definitely need as many volunteers and donations as we can get for this event," said Melissa Stricker-Cook.  "And there are plenty of ways for the community to contribute and help."
Potential volunteers are encouraged to attend a meeting at the Harrisburg First Assembly of God Church (4100 North Progress Avenue in Harrisburg) on Sunday, April 30 from 6 PM to 8 PM.  Here, attendees will learn more about the festival and have the opportunity to sign up for specific volunteer duties.  There will also be performances from some of the artists scheduled to perform at this year's festival.
Since the festival is a grass-roots effort, donations are also being requested.  If you or someone you know is interested in making a financial or product donation to the event, please contact Sam Primak at 717.920.2727 or  You can also contact Melissa Stricker-Cook at 717.805.1963 or
To raise funds for the Faith Into Action Youth Conference and Family Festival, the Harrisburg First Assembly of God Church is holding a Chicken BBQ and Car Wash on Saturday, June 3 from 10 AM to 2 PM.   Tickets for a chicken dinner meal are $8.00, and the car wash is by donation only.  For more information or to purchase your ticket, please contact Melissa Stricker-Cook using the information above.
Major Artwork Donated to Respite Camp Center

Matthew George and Michael Emanuel holding artwork in place
The Arc of Dauphin County has received a generous donation, which will grace the great room and private reading nook of the new Respite Camp Center.
The masterwork, a creation and gift of glassmaker Eileen Emanuel, "will add beauty to the neighborhood at night when light shines through it, and will enrich the experience of Respite Camp Center visitors," said Jan Lewis, Chairman of The Arc's Board of Directors.
"The Respite Camp Center's interior was designed to be warm and welcoming, a cozy home.  We feel those who come to the Center deserve the very best we can offer, and Eileen's gift embodies that effort.  It beautifully mirrors the Arts & Crafts design of our Center, and it emboldens the principles of the Craftsman movement, which initially flourished generations ago, and is still alive today," stated Craig George, Arc President and CEO.
"The Respite Camp Center, located in the first floor of the building that once housed the Dauphin Deposit Bank, is replete with history and ties back through the years.  I know that our consumers who are at Respite will enjoy seeing the beauty of the artwork, which champions an artistic aesthetic as popular today as it was originally," said Joe Martin, Respite Camp Center Manager.
After the artwork was created by Emanuel, it was
Natural light shining through installed artwork
carefully framed in a solid white oak frame custom built by her husband, Michael, a wood craftsman.  Finally, it was carefully hand-finished in a Mission Oak stain similar to the famous "Stickley Finish" by The Arc's Director of Lands and Facilities, Matthew George.  It was then permanently installed on April 20th by Mr. George and Joe Martin.  Matthew George and his family also donated the Mission Oak paneling and window sills in the reading nook's two "side lights", tall narrow windows beneath Eileen Emanuel's stained glass.
"Truly, it is a work of art for the ages," concluded Ms. Lewis.
The Respite Camp Center opened last month.  Please watch The Arc of Dauphin County News for the announcement of the Grand Opening Ribbon Cutting and Respite Camp Center Open House later this summer.

First In A Series of Conversations
What is a Supports Broker? Is the Service Coming to The Arc of Dauphin County?

Supports Brokers are an important part of the Pennsylvania Office of Developmental Programs' answer to how best serve our state's citizens who have special needs.
business_people2.jpg"The program has been available for many years, but now, it will be supported in new ways by the state.  The new supports will build a strong foundation for certain consumers who want to 'self direct'," said Craig George, President and CEO of The Arc of Dauphin County.
"Here in Dauphin County, a Supports Broker is a member of our staff who meets with the consumer, helps them assess their supports needs, such as when habilitation aids are needed, and when other assistance is required.  They then help the consumer locate candidates, interview them, hire them, and finally, through an outside service, handle all the payroll requirements," explained Kathy Gingerich, Advocate for consumers of The Arc of Dauphin County.
"One of the best parts of this is that the state has decided that the fees for the Supports Broker will not come out of anyone's budget, but instead will be funded separately.  Consumers will no longer lose part of their budget in order to achieve Person Directed Services," George said.
"We are tremendously excited about bringing Supports Broker Services to the consumers of The Arc of Dauphin County," said Ken Seeger, Director of Consumer Programs.  "We have known for years that many of our consumers wanted to have Personal Directed Services - that is, they have wanted to direct their own services, such as who to hire, when they should work, etc., but a Supports Broker to help them do all that plus payroll, recordkeeping, reporting, and more, has been out of reach for most because such a service would cost them. It would come out of their budget."
"But no more!" chimed in George, Gingerich and Seeger.  "Those days will be over and our consumers that want to personally direct their services can hire our Supports Broker out of a separate fund that does not touch their budget!"
"We will let everyone know when the final authorizations come through for our Service Broker program to begin," Seeger said.  "Keep watching The Arc of Dauphin County News for a special announcement.  This will be very exciting for everyone involved!"

PA ABLE Savings Program Launches

The Pennsylvania ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) Savings Program officially launched on April 3, 2017.  Although signed into legislation last summer, only recently (due to a massive effort required to create the processes needed for a smooth transition) has the Pennsylvania Treasury been able to put into place all the "mechanics" required to enact the legislation for this much needed program.

The PA ABLE Savings Program allows individuals with disabilities to save money without jeopardizing their
Launch of PA ABLE Savings Program at the Pennsylvania State Capitol
government benefits due to the Federal 2014 ABLE Act legislation.  This legislation created a first-of-its-kind savings vehicle for people with disabilities, offering the ability to accrue up to $100,000 without sacrificing Social Security and other government benefits.  Medicaid eligibility is not affected by any level of funds saved in the accounts.

Chris Rodriguez, director of public policy at the National Disability Institute, said that based on conversations with ABLE program administrators in various states, there are about 10,000 open ABLE accounts across the country.  Now that Pennsylvania is "on board," that number should increase significantly.

"We can be proud of what our Pennsylvania legislators have accomplished," said Craig George, President and CEO of The Arc of Dauphin County.  "Since the ABLE Act was approved, 19 states have made ABLE accounts available, according to the ABLE National Resource Center, and ours is one of the 19 forward thinking states!"

Up next: Attempts are being made to move three new bills through the Federal process.  If successful, one will increase the eligibility age for ABLE accounts to age 46 instead of 26, another would allow families to roll over money (saved for an individual with a disability in a 529 college savings plan) into an ABLE account, and a third will allow an individual who is working to add even more dollars (from their salary) into their ABLE account.  Keep watching The Arc of Dauphin County News in the months ahead and we will advise you of the progress of these bills in Washington.

Elsewhere in this newsletter, read about The Arc's newest board member, former Commonwealth of Pennsylvania State Representative, Mauree Gingrich, who has led the charge in Pennsylvania to benefit those with intellectual and developmental disabilities through carefully planned, forward thinking legislation.
Mental Illness and the Role of the Faith Community:
Click for complete flyer
Breaking the Code of Silence
Jewish Family Service of Greater Harrisburg will be offering a free presentation on Mental Illness and the Role of the Faith Community at the Jewish Community Center of Harrisburg on May 11, 2017 at 7 PM.  

Stephen Fried, award-winning journalist and co-author of A Common Struggle with Patrick J. Kennedy,  will address what can be done within the context of congregational life to create a welcoming, supportive and inclusive environment for people with mental illness and their families. 

  Meet our New Board Member!

We welcome our newest member of the Board of Directors:  Mauree Gingrich of Hershey, Pennsylvania.
Mauree Gingrich
Mauree was elected to represent Lebanon County's 101st District in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in November 2002. Throughout her career in the state legislature, she has earned a reputation as an intelligent, hardworking lawmaker, focused on the needs of her constituents and the citizens of Pennsylvania.
Citing her strong leadership experience and interest in economic and business development, Gingrich was selected by House Leadership to serve as chairman of the Labor and Industry Committee for the 2015-16 legislative session.  Gingrich's attention to business development, job creation and advancing the role of women has been a common thread throughout her lengthy career in public service.  The recipient of the National Federation of Independent Business's Guardian of Small Business Award for 14 consecutive years, Gingrich recognizes the need to attract and retain businesses to the Commonwealth that will bring family-sustaining jobs and have a positive impact on the state's economy and the lives of Pennsylvania's citizens.
During her 14 years in the House, Gingrich has held leadership positions on the Appropriations, Aging and Older Adult Services Committees.  Gingrich was appointed to the House Rules committee and the Bipartisan Local Government Commission.  She has focused significant attention on protecting the interests of Pennsylvania's most vulnerable citizens - children, the elderly and victims of domestic abuse - and on ensuring that taxpayer dollars set aside for welfare programs go to the citizens in greatest need.  She is the recipient of the Children's Hero Award from both the Lebanon County Sexual Assault Resource Counseling Center (SARCC) and the Joe Allegrini Children Hero Board of which she is now a member.
Gingrich is a founding member of the Lebanon County Commission for Women and an enthusiastic supporter and mentor of women, both individually and through numerous bipartisan leadership excellence programs.  She is frequently called upon to speak to women's groups, including entrepreneurs and business leaders.  
Before her election to statewide office, Gingrich was the owner of Mature Market Concepts, a qualitative market research company focusing on the older adult consumer.  Prior to opening her own market research company, she was the Director of Marketing at Cornwall Manor in Cornwall, Pennsylvania.
In addition to serving 14 years in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, Gingrich served 12 years on the Palmyra Borough Council, including nine years as council president.  She also previously served as a member of the Borough Planning commission.  Gingrich served on the Board of Trustees of the Lebanon Valley Chamber of Commerce, was past chairman of the Leadership Lebanon Valley Board and is a recipient of the prestigious Athena Award, given annually in recognition of women in leadership roles who encourage other women to achieve their potential.
Currently, former State Representative Gingrich lives in Hershey, Pennsylvania with her husband.  They have four children and seven grandchildren.

  Save the Date! 2nd Annual Million Dollar Golf Outing

  Meet our New Staff Member!

We are happy to welcome Craig Yorkgitis as our new Positive Behavior
Craig Yorkgitis
Support Consultant!
Craig was born and raised in Carlisle, where he still resides.  He is a graduate of Carlisle High School, and received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Master's in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Shippensburg University.
Prior to joining The Arc of Dauphin County's Positive Behavior Support department, Craig worked for a number of human services organizations throughout Central Pennsylvania, including NHS Human Services and The Arc of Cumberland and Perry Counties.
When asked what he enjoyed most about working in the human services field, Craig responded that he likes the idea of analytical support for individuals with special needs, as well as the holistic approach to Positive Behavior Support.
In his free time, Craig enjoys exercising, as well as playing cards, board games and frisby golf.
  We're going to the ballpark on July 21, 2017! More details to come!

Upcoming Events

May 5, 2017
First Friday Dance
Hosted by:  The Arc of Dauphin County

Join us for fun, food, and friendship at The Arc of Dauphin County, and hear the DJ play your favorite music!

Location:  The Arc of Dauphin County, Harsco Center, 2569 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, PA

Time:  5:30 - 7:30 PM

Cost:  $5.00 per person - includes food and drinks



May 20, 2017
Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community

Hosted by:  Highmark Blue Shield

Support The Arc of Dauphin County and individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities by participating in the Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community!  This fundraiser benefits local health and human services agencies, and 100 percent of the money raised by walkers goes directly to participating organizations.

Location:  HACC Harrisburg Campus, 1 HACC Drive, Harrisburg, PA

Time:  Registration begins at 7:45 AM, the 5K walk begins at 9:00 AM, and the one-mile fun walk begins at 9:15 AM.
July 15, 2017


The Arc of Dauphin County's Family Fun Day at the Faith Into Action Family Festival


Hosted by:  The Arc of Dauphin County and Harrisburg First Assembly of God Church


Join us as we offer a day of fun for all,  with food, live entertainment, games, prizes, crafts, face painting, and much, much more!  This year's Family Fun Day is going to be bigger than ever thanks to a partnership with the Harrisburg First Assembly of God Church.  We are merging our event with their annual grass-roots spectacle, known as the Faith Into Action Family Festival.  Details on registration for this FREE event are forthcoming.  Mark your calendars and get ready for a great time!  We expect nearly 1,500 people to attend! 


Location:  Grounds at Camp Curtin Academy, 2900 N. 6th Street, Harrisburg, PA


Time:  12:00 - 4:00 PM 



September 18, 2017


The Arc of Dauphin County's 2nd Annual Million Dollar Golf Outing


Hosted by:  The Arc of Dauphin County


Come out and play a round of golf to support individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities at The Arc of Dauphin County's 2nd Annual Million Dollar Golf Outing!  This year, our outing, complete with a $1,000,000 hole-in-one competition, will be one golfers won't want to miss!  Details on registration will be released soon, but mark your calendar now!  For more information, contact Sam Primak at 717.920.2727 or


Location:  Deer Valley Golf Course, 101 Stoudt Road, Hummelstown, PA


Time:  Registration begins at 8 AM; Shotgun start at 9 AM


Cost:  $75 per golfer; $300 for a foursome 



The Arc of Pennsylvania, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is seeking a part-time bookkeeper to work an average of 21 hours per week.   Duties mainly include but are not limited to:
  • Grant reporting
  • Accounts payable
  • Accounts receivable
  • Journal entries
  • Bank reconciliations
  • Assist Finance Director as needed
Position requires bookkeeping experience, knowledge of Microsoft Excel and Word, dependability, ability to work in a team environment, and ability to multi-task.  Quickbooks Online experience is preferred.  For more information, call The Arc of Pennsylvania at 717.234.2621.
Do you like organization?  The Arc of Dauphin County seeks energized, "want to make the world a better place" volunteers to help us with our new FOA (Friends of The Arc) program, filing, organizing our many closets of supplies, materials and other assets.  Even one day a month would be wonderful help!  Call Barb Bressler at 717.920.2727.
The "penthouse" level of our Respite Center Building (RCB) is becoming our Archive.  This beautiful space has its own independent heating and cooling system, it is very, very quiet on this floor, and you would be working on your own schedule to organize seven years of records.  The Archive will be divided into seven departments, and over time, the Archivist of The Arc will get all seven departments organized and searchable.  The Archivist candidate will need to pass FBI background checks, and other background checks.  Must also be able to lift a "banker's box" of files, and able to climb two flights of stairs to reach the Archive.  This is a very special volunteer opportunity for a very special person, and will remain open until filled.  For more information, please contact Craig George at , and specify in the subject line: ARCHIVES.
Your place to socialize and enjoy the music is The Arc of Dauphin County.  For nearly a decade we have been offering "First Friday Dances" complete with a DJ spinning your favorite tunes.  $5.00 covers entrance and hot dogs, cookies, soda, etc. (free to Charter Members of The Arc of Dauphin County)
The Arc of Dauphin County is Hiring!  E-mail Ashley Carter at to find out about any of the following opportunities:
RESPITE CARE COUNSELOR - seeking two part-time persons to provide support in our Respite program.  
Help support our friends with disabilities through our advocacy, education, consumer programs, life in the community/inclusion, and so much more!  Your gift ensures our non-profit can continue to provide the best services possible.  Our new Respite Center, which will open after the first of the year, will also benefit from your generosity.  Please e-mail Sam Primak at , or call the main switchboard at 717.920.2727.
If you are thinking long term, so are we!  Planning for the future, The Arc of Dauphin County will soon launch a Planned Giving program, which will allow our supporters who own a house or other real estate, who have paid up life insurance policies, or who would like to contribute to a trust or an Arc Endowment, as well as many other planned gift vehicles, to think long term with us.  Did you know without proper planning, the largest benefactor of your estate will be Uncle Sam?  Many planned gifts pass outside of probate from you to your loved ones and other beneficiaries, such as The Arc of Dauphin County.  For a confidential consultation, please e-mail Craig George at or call the main switchboard at 717.920.2727.

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