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August Newsletter


It won’t take readers of this newsletter long to figure out that August is a very busy month at Tri-Valley. Thank you to programs for your wonderful submissions. Your thoughtfulness really helps keep folks across programs, and very importantly our Board of Directors, in the loop. My month began at the MinnCAP Annual Conference. The trainings were good, especially the legislative work that was begun. I really hope to speak more on that work in the future. My highlight was to be present as Cindy Boudreaux received her 25-year recognition. Now, Cindy herself will say that being recognized for showing up to work for 25 years is crazy but I disagree. I think 25 years of service is something to celebrate and is something that I think will be much rarer in the future. After way too long, I was able to schedule some time to visit centers and to see our new Le Center office. I visited Elysian, Sleepy Eye, and Brooten on my way to the Policy Council meeting in St. Cloud. The trip was great. The staff in Brooten were wrapping up for the season on the day I showed up but I did have a chance to meet with the new school superintendent. I did get to see active classrooms in Sleepy Eye and Elysian. I came away impressed with the clean, welcoming centers I saw. Way to go Head Start! Near the end of the month, Tri-Valley received our health insurance renewal rates. The board will not approve the Management Team recommendations until September 11, but I can say the renewal was favorable, especially given health care inflation. More details to come following the board meeting. Favorable weather has kept work on the Agassiz Townhomes on track. We still anticipate half of the buildings ready for occupancy on October 1. Thank you to all at Tri-Valley who have begun to be involved in filling the units. Finally, after many fits and starts, I may have some news regarding Tri-Valley’s Administrative Office moving into the Fournet Block. There are a few official actions that have to take place before I can say much more so consider this a “teaser” for next month.

In This Issue:

In This Issue:

* CEO News and Notes * Last Day of School in Breckenridge * Mendoza Earns Her CDA * Sleepy Eye Male Involvement Day * Crookston Night to Unite * St. Cloud Center Events * Head Start Fundraiser * Grafton Center In-Service * Owatonna Center Parent Meeting * Boudreaux Years of Service Recognition

* Rogers Center In-Service * Owatonna Center Community Garden * Staff Complete Family Service Credential Course * Farm to Classroom Curriculum * Glencoe Center Farmers Market * New Playground at Rogers Center * Open House at New Le Center Office * Grafton Center Fun Family Fiesta Event * Voter Information Booths * Tri-Valley Board of Directors

Last Day of School in Breckenridge The Breckenridge center celebrated their last day by singing preschool's favorite songs lead by Relief Teacher Colin and future guitar player AJ! Thank you everyone for a great summer!

Mendoza Earns Her CDA Martina Mendoza from the St. Cloud center completed her Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential in July. Way to go Martina!

Sleepy Eye Male Involvement Day The Sleepy Eye center held a male involvement day on the afternoon of Tuesday, July 31. They had great attendance with all the parents and children enjoying the activities. All of the parents liked that the activities were in the afternoon just before pick up time instead of in the evening like most parent involvement events. The center received in-kind, more parent involvement, more volunteers and a new way of empowering partnerships with families. It was a great day!

Crookston Night to Unite Crookston Night to Unite was held on Tuesday, August 7 in Central Park. Tri-Valley Head Start, Child & Family Programs had a booth with a water feature and a bubble station. Tri-Valley Transportation had a booth with T.H.E. Bus on hand for attendees to check out and also provided transportation during the event.

Upcoming Calendar Items: * September 11 - Board of Directors Meeting * September 18 - Financial Literacy Workshop

St. Cloud Center Events The St. Cloud center hosted a plethora of great events in July. The center hosted a parent/child activity where parents came to the center and helped the children make jerseys of their favorite soccer player(s). After the shirts were ready to be worn, an exciting soccer tournament was held in the gym. The center held their second parent meeting with Sandra del Cruz doing an amazing job presenting on ReadyRosie. ReadyRosie is an early education tool that helps families, schools, and communities across the nation deepen and scale their family engagement eorts. The preschool room also got the chance to go out and tend to their garden. They are growing tomatoes, cucumbers and much more!

Grafton Center In-Service

Head Start Fundraiser (This was missed from April but too good to pass up!) The board staff affiliates held a fundraiser on April 18 in Fergus Falls. With the help of many Tri-Valley Head Start, Child & Family Programs staff, the group was able to meet the $1.00 per child goal set of $1184.00! Along with a silent auction, the team held a disco dance party with games and karaoke! Congratulations goes out to Cindy for winning the best dressed competition and Missy and TK for winning the Newlywed game! Everyone in attendance helped to make this fundraiser one of the best! A huge thank you to everyone who donated something for the silent auction and to everyone who attended the party with their disco dance moves!

The Grafton center had there in-service training on July 20. Even with an air conditioner malfunction in the training room, staff members adapted to the situation and were able to do their training in a classroom setting!

Owatonna Center Parent Meeting Are you seeking a career with purpose? Tri-Valley is a rapidly growing organization and is always looking for qualified employees; we seek highly motivated, talented candidates to join our staff. Tri-Valley offers a supportive work-environment and a competitive benefits package to our employees. Apply today at Tri-Valley!

The Owatonna center held a parent meeting recently where families and staff took time to create vision boards. These boards reflect our goals for the near future as well as the long run. Each person in attendance created a board. It was neat to see that both staff and parents had very similar goals along with parents and children.

Rogers Center In-Service Boudreaux Receives Years of Service Recognition from MinnCAP Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc. staff attended the Minnesota Community Action Partnership (MinnCAP) Annual Training Conference held on July 31 – August 2 at the River’s Edge Convention Center in St. Cloud, Minn. Staff took part in legislative general sessions, listened to speakers on various topics, and took part in several educational breakout sessions. In conjunction with the annual training conference, 25 Year Honorees were recognized for their dedicated service and commitment to Community Action. Tri-Valley’s Cindy Boudreaux (Health Services Manager) was honored for her 25 years of work with Tri-Valley in Crookston. (A short bio on Cindy from the event): Cindy started her Head Start experience as a Head Start child where she was introduced to new and exciting things she had never seen before. For the past 25 years, Cindy has undeniably impacted countless children and families through her work. Cindy has been instrumental in providing high quality, innovative health services and health education to children and parents. Her team provides CPR training, educates Pregnant Women and performs Child and Teen check-ups, which generates income for the program. Admirably, while doing this, Cindy is a strong advocate for families and staff, displaying empathy and compassion in everything she does. (Photo L-R): Arnie Anderson (MinnCAP Executive Director), Cindy Boudreaux, and Francie Mathes (Office of Economic Opportunity)

The Rogers center had their first in-service day of the season on August 3. Center manager Vanessa Escamilla and Education Supervisor Carol Peterson went with a Hawaiian theme training. They had many fun team building activities for staff like best group Hawaiian dance, Pictionary, “Who am I” baby picture game and cotton ball spoon race. They also trained staff in Behavior Guidance, Safe Environments, and did a refresher on Child Abuse and Neglect. Staff practiced with each other on different behavior guidance strategies to teach children how to identify and cope with their behavior and feelings. They also practiced on identifying with their “eagle eyes” different unsafe environments. The Rogers team ended their training with a potluck and surprised their fellow co-worker Rosa Acosta with gifts for her soon-to-arrive baby girl!

Owatonna Center Community Garden The Owatonna center and parents worked together to plant their Head Start plot this spring in the community garden located on the center grounds. Recently, another family night was held where parents volunteered their time to clean up the garden and pick the veggies. The garden is producing, zucchini, broccoli, habaneros, peppers, tomatoes, and more!

Several Staff Complete Family Service Credential Course Erika Todd (Sleepy Eye), Barbara Garcia (Owatonna), Samantha Tapley (Danube), Veronica Hernandez (Brooten), Sandra De La Cruz (St. Cloud), Heidi Campos-Espinoza (Rogers) and Avril Kruchten (Monticello) completed the 2018 Family Service Credential course in August. Edna Tudon (Family Services Specialist) trained them during the summer in three different sessions. Congratulations to you all on your accomplishment!

The Farm Comes to the Early Childhood Classroom One of the focuses this year with Head Start, Child & Family Programs’ curriculum is to bring the farm to the early childhood classroom. The children are learning about growing their own foods, particularly fruits and vegetables. Each center has gotten a “garden in a box”. The Danube center has planted their garden and they have been enjoying the cucumbers out of the garden in the classrooms. They have also planted seeds and watched them germinate. Besides doing hands on activities in the classrooms about seeds, planting, and growing, they are featuring a fruit and vegetable of the month. For August, the fruit is peaches and the vegetable is carrots. To cap off the experience, the preschoolers cooked up some muffins with peaches and carrots as ingredients. They were delicious!

Glencoe Center Farmers Market The Glencoe center held a mini Farmers Market for children on August 10 as part of the Farm to Early Care Initiative in celebration of National Farmer Market Week (August 5-11). Local produce was donated from the Farm of Minnesota located in Hutchinson, MN. The Farm of Minnesota is one of the local farms that will be supplying some of TVOC’s Head Start Centers with fresh, organic, and locally grown produce. Members of Glencoe’s fire department and police department came out to volunteer as well. Tables were set up in the parking lot with samples of different fruits and vegetables. The children were able to walk around to each table and sample produce such as purple beans, peppers, squash, watermelon, raspberries, tomatoes and so much more. Jami Lee, Child Nutrition Manager, also read stories about vegetables to the children after they finished with the Farmers Market. All children were able to bring home a bag of corn on the cob and apples!

New Playground at Rogers Center The Rogers center started their first day on Monday, August 13. The kids enjoyed the day and to add to the excitement, the center has a new infant/toddler playground for the kids to learn, play and grow on!

Open House in Le Center The new Le Center Administrative Office held an open house on Friday, August 10. They had 32 visitors come throughout the day, including community members, families and the Superintendent of Tri-City United (TCU) Schools. There were cookies, refreshments and games for everyone that attended.

Grafton Center Holds Fun Family Fiesta Event The Grafton center had a Fun Family Fiesta Event on Friday August 10. The Fiesta was a great success with many activities that families could enjoy together. Everyone that attended was able to participate in games, projects, bingo, and a build your own burger fun meal. Families were encourage to bring any male ďŹ gure in the household to the event to promote male involvement in their child’s life. The Grafton center sta would like to thank everyone who participated in the event!

Voter Information Booths at East Grand Forks, Hendrum and Crookston East Grand Forks parent, Juanita Wilkes volunteered to do voter registration booths at the East Grand Forks, Crookston and Hendrum centers to educate families on the importance of voting. Several parents registered to vote and visited the booth for more information. Children that visited the booth at each location were able to vote on their favorite meal. Child Nutrition Service Manager, Jami Lee will use this information in planning menus! (Photos to the right)

Profile for Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc.

2018 Tri-Valley August Newsletter  

2018 Tri-Valley August Newsletter