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October Newsletter


As you will see later in this newsletter, October was a busy month at Tri-Valley. I have several updates and reports to make…most of which is good news! The month started with our annual Risk Management call with Region XII (Migrant and Seasonal Head Start). Once again, I was able to hear about the good work for children and their families being done by our coworkers and how representatives from our funding sources recognize the efforts of Tri-Valley staff. Way to go everyone! October is also recognition time for our Foster Grandparent volunteers. I once again had the pleasure of attending the event. We also had a few board members in attendance. As always, the stories from the classrooms about the impact the Foster Grandparent volunteers have on children were extremely moving. I am thankful that our Senior Programs staff are so skilled at putting together a nice event year after year with a very limited budget to highlight what the volunteers do and to say thank you for their wonderful contributions to the schools and other worksites in the area. This isn’t necessarily in the category of “good” news but Tri-Valley’s Board of Directors did approve a revised health insurance plan that addresses all of the concerns I laid out to staff after we received our proposed 2018 renewal. Given the situation the agency is in regarding our history and other factors, I think the approved plan starts us down a path that should lead to more stability in rates going forward. That stability won’t be evident in the first year, but I do think it will come. It likely won’t, however, come without more change in the future. Just know that any proposed changes will be vetted through the corporate Management Team before going to the board. Maintaining a robust health insurance plan going forward will require a strong team effort. Back to good news. After three years of working with many partners locally and on the state level, we broke ground on Agassiz Townhomes on October 25th! We had tremendous support from the City of Crookston and the Crookston Housing and Economic Development Authority throughout the process. We had 14 local businesses contribute funds to the project. Greater Minnesota Housing Fund, UMOS and the Otto Bremer Trust were instrumental in being awarded tax credits. The list goes on and on. Once awarded credits, we needed assistance from Bremer Bank, Greater Minnesota Housing Fund, and Minnesota Housing to fill a gap we had in our deal with Wells Fargo. We received that assistance. It is truly remarkable how our many partners came through to make the project a reality. I also need to mention once again that if it wasn’t for Three Rivers Community Action, Agassiz Townhomes doesn’t happen. I look forward to providing updates on the project in future newsletter updates.

In This Issue:

In This Issue:

* CEO News and Notes * Foster Grandparent Recognition Luncheon * Great Apple Crunch! Food Day * Agassiz Townhomes Groundbreaking * Rochester Parent Meeting

* Camp Smile Visits Glencoe and Hutchinson Centers * Upcoming Calendar Items * Halloween Spirit at Tri-Valley Transportation * Tri-Valley is Hiring * Tri-Valley Board of Directors

Tri-Valley Foster Grandparent Program Holds Recognition Luncheon The Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc. Foster Grandparent Program held its annual recognition luncheon at the Crookston Eagles Club on Wednesday, October 11, 2017. Heidi Simmons, Senior Programs Director began the event by welcoming the Foster Grandparents and guests to the banquet. Jason Carlson, Tri-Valley’s CEO then thanked all of the volunteers for the difference they are making in the lives of others in our communities. Following the welcome, the “World of Difference” award was given to individuals who have been nominated by professional staff at their volunteer site. The award is engraved with, “With the little things you do every day, your impact spreads far and wide. Your commitment to improving lives inspires and motivates us all… You make a world of difference.” Recipients of the World of Difference Award were Grandma Darlene Jadeke (Head Start, East Grand Forks, 8 year volunteer), Grandpa David Vanderhoof (South Point, East Grand Forks, 9 year volunteer), Grandma Beverly Flickinger (Challenger Elementary, Thief River Falls, 7 year volunteer), and Grandma Corann Fladhammer (Win-E-Mac School, Erskine, 12 year volunteer). Prior to the meal and awards, the Foster Grandparents were entertained by the sounds of the Crookston Area Men’s Chorus led by George French. For more information on how to become a Foster Grandparent, Caring Companion or how to receive Caring Companion services please call Heidi, Jeanette, Jean, or Kristal at 1-800-584-7020.

(L-R) Darlene Jadeke, Corann Fladhammer, Beverly Flickinger, and David Vanderhoof.

Tri-Valley Head Start, Child & Family Programs “Great Apple Crunch” Food Day! Minnesota farmers are in full swing come autumn, it is the perfect time to celebrate the products they grow and raise! Jami Nunn, Food & Nutrition Specialist has been working with the Institute of Agriculture and Trade Policy to promote Farm to Early Care in TVOC’s head start centers. Throughout the year there has been two focus fruits or vegetables incorporated into the menu’s each month. Children spend time learning in their classroom on how valuable farming is to our economy as well learning how fresh produce enhances their palates. In October, Minnesota and other states across the nation celebrate Farm to School and Early Care Month. Farm to Early Care Celebrations have taken place within Tri-Valley’s centers such as children showing their love for apples during the “Great Apple Crunch” on Thursday, October 12th. The centers served apples for lunch and participated in activities revolving around apples. Centers such as Glencoe/Hutchinson promoted Farm to Head Start by putting on a Harvest Fest for families on October 13th to celebrate this season. Here is how centers have been celebrating Farm to School and Early Care Month! Elysian: Preschool 1 created a Great Apple Crunch door. In addition; each room did apple tasting, apple research, and several other apple related activities. As well, the staff enjoyed apples for a healthy treat. Rochester: Rochester read Ten Apples Up On Top to their kids, talked about colors, and made art with that color. They smashed apples, made apple sauce, apple croissants, and had apple slices for lunch. Glencoe/Hutchinson: Kids got to weigh apples, talk about colors, shapes, smells and where they come from. They also got a couple of slices during snack time. Crookston: Children completed activities letting children explore a variety of apples. They talked about size, color, and taste. They also had a chance to explore different ways apples could be prepared such as applesauce and apple cider. St. Cloud: Planned fun activities for the children such as; practicing fine motor skills, cognitive, talked about colors and much more. We also had fun tasting the different kinds of apples. East Grand Forks: Children put their hands inside a feely bag to try and guess what was inside. They drew pictures in their journal about what they thought it was. Turned out to be apples! They also taste tested red, green, and yellow apples and talked about the color, taste (sweet or sour), crunchy or soft. Then they picked what apple they liked best. EGF also read the book “10 Apples Up on Top” by Dr. Seuss and did an activity with apples. They were able to measure and count during preparation of a cooking activity.

Thank you Mike Christopherson from the Crookston Daily Times for this great picture of the Agassiz Townhomes groundbreaking ceremony! (Photo L-R) Ward 5 City Council Member Dale Stainbrook, CHEDA Board President Kurt Heldstab, Polk County Commissioner and Tri-Valley Opportunity Council Board member Don Diederich, District 1 State Sen. Mark Johnson, and Amy Larson of the Minnesota House Finance Agency.

Agassiz Townhomes Project Groundbreaking Ceremony Held in Crookston (Article and photos courtesy of KROX Radio) The Agassiz Townhomes project officially became a reality on Wednesday, October 25th, as a number of area dignitaries, including Senator Mark Johnson, and County Commissioners Don Diedrich and Gary Willhite, and Amy Larson from Minnesota Housing, joined Executive Director at Tri-Valley, Jason Carlson, and representatives from local businesses, along with City and Crookston Housing and Economic Development Authority (CHEDA) staff to break ground at the construction site at the corner of Fisher Avenue and Broadway. Carlson stressed the fact that the project represented both quality partnerships and perseverance. “It’s our job to identify needs in our communities, and Crookston had an identified housing need a few years ago. For three years now, Tri-Valley has been working with CHEDA, the City, private employers, Otto Bremer Trust, Minnesota Housing, and now Wells Fargo Bank, to put together a needed housing project. It’s one of many things we’re doing in the community. I really think that this is a great example of how Tri-Valley’s Board of Directors is committed to the community of Crookston.” he said. Vice Mayor and Council Member, Dale Stainbrook praised the affordable housing aspect of the project, saying, “I like the fact that this is income-based housing for our workforce. It’s a step for them to move to the community, get employed with one of our businesses, and it’s a stepping stone for a lot of these tenants; it’s housing they can afford, and if they stay here long enough, we hope that they will buy a home and become part of the community. I think this is going to be a tremendous plus. If we get this in, I think other projects will follow. We still need a variety of single family, affordable workforce housing, and I think this is the first step to reach that goal.” City Administrator, Shannon Stassen, seconded Stainbrook’s words, adding, “Workforce housing is very important, and we’ve been hearing for a number of years that Crookston needs more of it. This project has been three years in the making, so hats off to Jason Carlson and everybody else involved in sticking around and seeing it through. These houses are going to be important for people who ultimately help our businesses to succeed. We need a workforce, and we need affordable housing for those people who come here to Crookston and fill those jobs, so it’s vital, and we just can’t thank Tri-Valley enough for taking this on – not just today, but long-term.” And CHEDA Executive Director, Craig Hoiseth said that it was really the creative partnerships that made project reality. “The partnerships were everything in this project. The application stood out at Minnesota Housing because the City of Crookston, CHEDA, the 15 businesses, Tri-Valley, Three Rivers … you name it, it just goes on and on. People who were in support of this project came out full-throttled, with dollars behind them, and enthusiastically embraced this project. The end result is that a good collaboration brings forth a good project, and we look forward to seeing 30 townhomes delivered for Crookston residents in about a year,” he said.

Rochester Parent Meeting The Rochester center held a parent meeting on Tuesday, October 24th. They had NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) attend the event to talk about stress. They provided food for the parents and day care for the kids. They had several toy and clothes giveaways as well!

Halloween at Tri-Valley Transportation The spirit of Halloween is at Tri-Valley Transportation. Pictured L-R are Tina Olson, Marcia Haglund, Cindy Gjerswold, Amy Menard and Dennis Klamm.

Camp Smile Visits Glencoe and Hutchinson Centers On Thursday, October 26th the preschool classrooms in Glencoe and Hutchinson had a visit from Camp Smile. The children got to read a book about dental hygiene, talk about floss, sugary foods, and brushing teeth. The kids also got to practice brushing teeth on a puppet! 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!

Upcoming Calendar Items: * Nov. 13 - HS/EHS Policy Council * Dec. 9 - MSHS/MSEHS Policy Council * Dec. 12 - Tri-Valley Board meeting

For more information call Nancy Ramon at 1-800-820-7263

Tri-Valley Board of Directors


LeRoy Vonasek

Mark Kroulik

Shawna Peterson

Don Diedrich

Chairperson Public Official Sector Marshall County

Vice Chairperson Private Sector Marshall County

Secretary Private Sector Marshall County

Treasurer Public Official Sector Polk County

Dr. Jodi Boerger-Wilder Private Sector Polk County

Sarah Kjono Low-Income Sector Norman County

Gary Willhite Public Official Sector Polk County

John Gerszewski Low-Income Sector Polk County

Marvin Gunderson

Lee Ann Hall

Public Official Sector Norman County

Public Official Sector Norman County

Dr. Linda Neuerburg

Stephanie Vonesh

Private Sector Polk County

Low-Income Sector Polk County

Domita Mack Public Official Sector Marshall County

Dale Svaren Private Sector Norman County

Greg Burris Low-Income Sector Marshall County

Not Pictured: Lynn Monk, Low-Income Sector, Norman County and Nancy Meyers, Low-Income Sector, Marshall County.

The mission of Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc. is to provide opportunities to improve the quality of life for people and communities.

Profile for Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc.

October newsletter 2017  

Tri-Valley October Newsletter

October newsletter 2017  

Tri-Valley October Newsletter