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SEPTEMBER

2013

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Garden Center Services

HE LEAFLET

The View From My Chair A MESSAGE FROM OUR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

towards the agency’s staff that work day in and day out to support our consumers in their homes. The staff that work in our residential programs, and those that work in our day programs, should be thanked and recognized for the dedicated service they provide, and this Labor Day week is a perfect opportunity to do that.

Linda and Gerry

INSIDE THIS ISSUE THE VIEW FROM MY CHAIR Page 1 GCS FAMILY SPOTLIGHT Page 2 TWIN HEARTS FOUNDATION Page 3 AROUND GCS Page 4

Yesterday, Labor Day, with our day programs closed, I decided to stop by the houses and see how everybody was doing and how they were celebrating the holiday. It was fun to visit people in their homes and to check in with some of the residential staff that I don’t get to see that often. Some individuals were taking advantage of an extra day off of work by just resting and relaxing, while others got to spend extra time with their families. A number of the houses were getting ready for cookouts, and in some cases a couple of the homes had decided to join forces and celebrate Labor Day together. By the end of my visits, I realized how appreciative I felt

you to contribute to and assist with these efforts. Some ways you can support us right now include: • Garden Center Businesses - Shop our businesses! See page 2 for details. • First Fridays at the Gallery - Join us at Garden Gallery this Friday, and the first Friday of every month to shop for amazing artisan gifts and artwork.

When any of you reading this newsletter speaks to or bumps into any of our employees, please take the time to express your gratitude for the assistance they provide your loved ones.

• 57th Annual Fashion Show November 10th is our annual Fashion Show and Luncheon at the DoubleTree in Alsip. Contact Jennifer at 773-9414151 ext. 218 for information.

“I realized how appreciative I felt towards the agency’s staff that work day in and day out to support our consumers in their homes.”

• 3 Marathons in 3 Months - Read about our amazing staff, Annabelle Winters, who is running 3 marathons in 3 months to raise money for Garden Center! Details of how you can support Annabelle are on page 2.

One of my priority concerns is bringing in the necessary revenue to compensate our staff appropriately, and to fund programs which are truly meeting the needs of each individual and not just meeting minimal standards, and by now you should realize that our state funding is inadequate to meet these goals. There is a new focus and energy to our fund development efforts, and I cannot stress enough how important it now is for each of

• iGive - Support Garden Center with online shopping! www.iGive.com. • Tootsie Roll Days - Volunteer for the drive. See page 3 for details.

Finally, I want to let you know, in an effort to save money we will be incorporating our monthly calendar into the newsletter. We will ensure that it is out at the end of the month so you will have the calendar in a timely manner. Thank you for all you do for Garden Center,


GARDEN CENTER FAMILY SPOTLIGHT Annabelle joined the Garden Center family as our Behavior Analyst in January 2012. Prior to that she was working on a Crisis Team for which she visited multiple agencies in our area. Annabelle says she was, “impressed with the level of empathy and compassion GCS staff showed” toward the people they supported so she “begged for a job” with Garden Center. In her role at Garden Center, Annabelle assesses and provides services for people who are having challenges in communicating and interacting positively with others. She helps individuals build skills to improve their quality of life. Annabelle also provides training to our staff in techniques to support those they serve as effectively as possible. Annabelle grew up in New Hampshire and Maine. In 2006, she won a poetry contest and came to Chicago for her prize, a writer’s residency at the Art Institute of Chicago. Following her residency, Annabelle decided to stay in Chicago and in 2008 she graduated with her Master’s Degree in Behavior Analysis from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology.

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Annabelle says what she likes most about Garden Center is, “Having the freedom to incorporate my own passions into this job - everyone here is open to my hair-brained ideas - you don’t find this level of freedom for creativity at other workplaces.”

In her free-time, Annabelle enjoys quilting, is learning to play guitar, rides motorcycles with her family, and is also an avid runner. She recently found another way of “incorporating her own passions” into her job by committing to run three marathons in the next three months to raise money for Garden Center. Annabelle was a runner in this year’s Boston Marathon. Fortunately, she had finished the race when the bombings occurred, but as a result of her experience in the tragedy that unfolded, Annabelle decided her future running endeavors would have a positive outcome beyond the personal ones that come from training. That is why Annabelle has decided to raise money for Garden Center by running three marathons in three months. Annabelle ran (and won!) her first of the three marathons, on September 1st, in Minocqua, WI. She will run in the October 13th Chicago Marathon and will complete the Catalina Eco Marathon in Catalina Island, CA in November. Her goal is to raise $5,000 for Garden Center during the three months and she is already well on her way!

3 MARATHONS IN 3 MONTHS! You can support Annabelle (and Garden Center!) by donating to her fundraising page at www.GoFundMe.com/3zo0kc. You can follow her progress on her blog at www. fluencysfolly.com.

G C S

B U S I N E S S

Annabelle’s participation at this year’s Boston Marathon changed the way she looks at running

C O R N E R

DID YOU KNOW? You can earn money for Garden Center just by giving us your (or your businesses’) old ink jet cartridges, toner cartridges, laptops, desktop computers, cell phones, iPods and digital cameras. Drop your items off at either the Burbank or Kedzie locations and our GCS Recycling & Confidential Document Shredding crew will do the rest! Recycling Bins are located at Burbank & Kedzie Sites

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Do good when you shop... COFFEE Co.

. Tastes Good. Does Good. Feels Good


you can help Ladies who use wheelchairs at our Oak Lawn house are unable to get from their backdoor into their beautiful backyard. We need someone to build a short ramp so Krista and her housemates can get to their backyard independently.

It’s Tootsie Roll Drive Time! The Annual Knights of Columbus Tootsie Roll Drive will be September 20th and 21st. We need as many volunteers as possible to help collect donations at various checkpoints in the Burbank, Oak Lawn and Mt. Greenwood areas. We receive our share of donations based on how many volunteers we have so ask your family, friends and neighbors to come out for a couple hours! Not comfortable working an intersection? No problem! We have positions at store fronts as well! Contact Jennifer Georgis by phone at 773-941-4151 Ext. 218 or by email at jGeorgis@GardenCenterServices.org to sign up today! Have fun & help raise money for GCS!

We’d like to give a special SHOUT OUT to Mr. Sterba for helping recruit his Harley club to volunteer the event. THANK YOU MR. STERBA!!!

TWIN HEARTS AUTISM FOUNDATION

If you can help, please contact Michele at mHula@ GardenCenterServices.org or call her at 773-941-4151 ext. 212 today!

This past May, Garden Center celebrated our move to the new Kedzie building after vandalism forced us to move from our old site. After hearing of our plight, the Twin Hearts Autism Foundation donated funds to help us make the move. They continue to support us today through our Wish Program, making the dreams of the people we support come true everyday. The Twin Hearts Austism Foundation was started in 2010 by Irene and Tom Costello, parents of twin sons who have autism. Their mission is to “enrich the lives of children and adults with autism and other special needs by raising funds that will go to support individuals, organizations, schools, scholarships and family events related to the autism and special needs communities”.

Twin Hearts Autism Foundation supported our move to the Kedzie building and our Wish Program

Help us turn this frown upside down!

Mark your calendar...

In such a short time, Twin Hearts has already made a major impact on agencies and families supporting people with disabilities. Last year alone, in addition to the generous support they provided Garden Center Services, Twin Hearts funded a specially trained comfort and therapy dog for Elim Christian School; provided exercise equipment, video games, iPad, art supplies and more to the Titans Program at Linconway Area Special Recreation; sponsored ABA therapy for a child in need; funded camping items and sponsored a camper at Camp Red Leaf (a camp for children with special needs); and purchased educational materials for the Academy of Excellence in Learning, a program in Mokena that uses ABA to help students “learn how to learn” and transition back to their home district as a successful student. To learn more about the Twin Hearts Autism Foundation, please visit their website at www.TwinHeartsAutismFoundation.org.

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Be sure to join us September 6th for First Friday at the Gallery! Enjoy LIVE music, Amazing food from Ariel Bar & Grill in Tinley Park & join in our Creative Community Activity - Paint Your Own Silk Scarf! October 2013

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Growing dignity and independence 8333 S. Austin Ave. Burbank, IL 60459 10444 S. Kedzie Chicago, IL 60655 phone 773-941-4151 email info@gardencenterservices.org

uan Debbie & DeJ

web www.GardenCenterServices.org

Board of Directors President

Daniel Wenzler

1st Vice President

Jenny Wojcik

2nd Vice President

Doug Combs

Treasurer

R. Pat Ballis

Secretary

Annmarie Caulfield

Members:

Sharon Duncan

Karen hangin’ at the mall

Jimmy brightens up the Kedzie sidewalk

Scott Hardek John J. Kunkes Sean O’Shea Linda Sherwood

s the Crew visitum y it n u m m The Co is Aviation Muse Illino

DID YOU KNOW? With iGive you can earn money for GCS on hotel & plane tickets at no cost to you!

OUR MISSION Garden Center Services is committed to supporting and empowering persons with developmental disabilities through innovative and person-centered services. Our commitment to the excellence of our programs is surpassed only by our devotion to the people we serve and the communities in which they live.

Donna, Frank & Kim Blackhawks Pride!

The recent room renovation at the Burbank day program is now complete!

The new spaces are qu ieter and more conducive to group work

Thanks to those of you who donated to our Christmas Appeal, GCS has completed renovations at the Burbank site creating three new group areas and one private space for individuals needing assistance with self-care. THANK YOU!

visit www.iGive.com/GardenCenter to learn how you can help Garden Center when you shop online.


The Leaflet ISSUE SEP 2013