The Sharing Shelf’s Tennis Party is almost here! Saturday, March 4th – Sign up today!

FSW’s Mount Vernon Clinic relocates to Gramatan Avenue on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017

FSW’s Mt. Vernon Clinic is moving on Tuesday, Feb. 7th. Click the flyer for more information.

 

 

 

 

FSW’s My Second Home receives Respite grant from Alzheimer’s Foundation of America

ALZHEIMER’S FOUNDATION OF AMERICA AWARDS PORT CHESTER ORGANIZATIONS $5,000 RESPITE CARE GRANT

 

NEW YORK (January 27, 2017) The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA), a non-profit organization that unites more than 2,600 member organizations nationwide with the goal of providing optimal care and services to individuals living with dementia and their families, has awarded a $5,000 Phyllis and Milton Berg Respite Care Grant to Family Services of Westchester’s My Second Home, Mt. Kisco and White Plains,  non-profit organizations in Port Chester, N.Y. 

“The Fall 2017 Respite Care Grants are awarded to nonprofit member organizations who play an instrumental role in helping families get the respite care that they need,” said Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr., AFA’s president and chief executive officer.  “As costs of caring for a loved one with dementia continue to soar, this much needed relief can go a long way towards maintaining the physical and emotional wellbeing of caregivers.  These grants will afford family caregivers an opportunity to send a loved one with dementia to an adult day program or hire an in-home aid, and lightens their caregiving load, allowing them time to recharge. We are proud to help Family Services of Westchester’s My Second Home, Mt. Kisco and White Plains, further its efforts in serving the people of Westchester as they will disperse the funds to families in their community, caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease, to give them a much-needed break.”

“Anyone who has a loved one who is affected by Alzheimer’s disease knows the value of respite care,” said Susan Wayne, President and CEO of Family Services of Westchester. “This generous grant will allow us to continue providing the much-needed time-out for those caregivers who are dealing directly with the effects of Alzheimer’s disease in a family member.”

Family Services of Westchester’s My Second Home, Mt. Kisco and White Plains provide a variety of resources for seniors, including home health care, geriatric mental health, service coordination, elder abuse prevention, education, and transportation.

Respite programs, such as adult day programs, offer caregivers a much-needed time-out from their caregiving duties, while providing stimulation for individuals with Alzheimer’s. 

Caregiving can be a highly demanding and stressful responsibility.  Caregivers need support and attention to maintain their own health and well-being.  Respite care provides caregivers with a temporary rest from their caregiving duties.  The benefits of respite care include helping to avoid burnout, relieving stress, renewing energy, renewing a sense of purpose, restoring a sense of balance to your life, helping to keep things in perspective, and enjoying yourself.  Even being able to run your errands during the week, while not having to worry about the stress of leaving a loved one all alone, is a great source of relief.

AFA is able to provide vital services, like this grant, as a result of the generosity of individual contributions, sponsorships and fundraising activities. To help support these initiatives, visit http://www.alzfdn.org/Donation-Page/donate-to-find-a-cure-for-alzheimers-disease.html. For more information about AFA membership and grant opportunities, visit http://www.alzfdn.org/AFAServices/aboutAFAgrants.html.

Manhattanville Athletic Teams win national award for volunteering at the Sharing Shelf’s Teen Boutique

Cleveland, Ohio: The Manhattanville College Department of Athletics received the highest level of national recognition for its community service efforts from the National Association of Division III Athletic Administrators (NADIIIAA), as Manhattanville was named the Winner in the “One-Time Project” category as part of the annual NADIIIAA/Jostens Community Service Awards, the NADIIIAA announced on Wednesday.
 The honor marks the third straight year and the sixth time in the last 10 years that Manhattanville has earned national plaudits for its wide-ranging community service efforts, but the first time that Manhattanville (or any MAC Freedom institution) has earned a top honor. In addition to receiving a commemorative trophy at the NCAA Convention on January 18, NADIIIAA and Jostens will also make a $1,000 contribution to Manhattanville’s general scholarship fund.
 “I am thrilled to accept this award on behalf of our women’s soccer and women’s lacrosse student-athletes,” Director of Athletics Keith Levinthal said. “It always gives me great pleasure to see our athletes making a difference, but even more so to see our students having a direct and personal impact on the lives of young people in our area. To be recognized on a national level once again for this work is a tremendous honor and reflects all that our 300-plus student-athletes do in the community.”
 
Manhattanville earned the prestigious honor for its work with The Sharing Shelf’s annual “Teen Boutique”, a Family Services of Westchester program that helps to provide less fortunate girls in the Westchester County area with warm and clean school clothes that they otherwise would not be able to afford. Members of the Manhattanville women’s soccer and women’s lacrosse teams sorted and arranged the donated clothing before the event, and then served as individual mentors to the teenagers as tandems picked out outfits and accessories together for the girls to take home.
“It’s a really unique and rewarding experience that is very different from other community service work we do; usually you’re helping out at some big event, but this one is much more personal,” said senior women’s lacrosse goalie Lauren Cassidy (Oceanside, N.Y., Oceanside). “The one-on-one interactions with the girls give you the opportunity to really get involved with people and see first-hand how the little things can really make a difference in someone’s day and life.”
With its sixth honor since 2007, only four Division III institutions have earned more NADIIIAA/Jostens Community Service Awards than Manhattanville over that span. The department previously earned an Award of Merit in the “One-Time Project” category for the 2006-07 school year, and has also has earned four honors in the “Array of Projects” category: one Award of Merit (2007-08) and three honorable mentions (2006-07, 2013-14 and 2014-15).
The Manhattanville Department of Athletics has a long tradition of giving back to the local community through service activities, encouraging our student-athletes to engage in activities designed to support the surrounding Westchester County, New York and Southern Connecticut communities. During the 2015-16 school year, Manhattanville athletic teams volunteered over 2,500 hours of time, enthusiasm and energy that raised money and awareness for a number of important causes.
 
For more information on The Sharing Shelf, visit http://www.fsw.org/the-sharing-shelfs-teen-boutique.

 

FSW receives $50,000 grant from WCF to help children suffering from trauma

PORT CHESTER NY (Jan. 17, 2017) —A $50,000 grant from The Westchester Community Foundation (WCF) will help support Family Services of Westchester (FSW)’s Trauma Systems Therapy counseling program for children. The funding will be used to enhance FSW’s work in its three largest clinics in Port Chester, Mt. Vernon, and Yonkers.

 

Trauma Systems Therapy (TST) is a comprehensive, evidenced-based treatment program for children and adolescents who have experienced traumatic events and who live in environments with ongoing stress. By addressing both the child’s emotional needs as well as the social environment in which he or she lives, TST aims to understand a child’s symptoms in the context of his or her world and strengthen the child’s coping mechanisms by involving the family, school, and community. The approach is especially useful for children suffering from traumatic events in everyday life, such as domestic violence, community violence, poverty, and other highly stressful chronic situations.

 

“The  grant will allow us to act as advocates for the parents and the child, make referrals to community resources for the child and the family, and develop ongoing relationships with the child’s schools so we can monitor the child’s behavior and performance,” explained Polly Kerrigan, FSW’s Senior Vice President of Program Operations. “By stabilizing the child’s environment—including the home and school—our social workers will help these children succeed academically, socially, and emotionally.”

 

FSW began using TST two years ago, after observing the negative impact of trauma on the children and families with whom we work. Examples of traumatic events include sexual abuse, physical abuse, neglect, and witnessing domestic violence. Other sources of trauma are placement in foster care, separation from a caregiver, living amid community violence, or living in poverty.

 

In an effort to better identify children who have been affected by trauma, FSW began administering a trauma history screening assessment tool to every child admitted to our clinics. After performing more

than 500 screenings, clinicians determined that the average number of types of trauma that a child has endured is five.

 

Children react to trauma in a variety of ways, including avoidance (detatchment, numbness); re-experiencing (intrusive thoughts, recurring distress dreams); and arousal (sleep difficulties, irritabililty; hypervigilance). In many cases, a traumatized child will have trouble regulating emotions or behavior.

 

Trauma often leads to depression, risk-taking behavior, substance abuse, sexualized behavior, enuresis, problems affecting conduct, sleep, eating, and attachment; and more.

 

Beyond the consequences for the child and family, these problems carry high costs for society. For example, a child who cannot learn may grow up to be an adult who cannot hold a job. A child with chronic physical problems may grow up to be a chronically ill adult. A child who grows up learning to hate herself may become an adult with an eating disorder or substance addiction. 

 

TST provides effective, evidence-based services and interventions to help children and families who have experienced traumatic events, whether the event is a single exposure or chronic exposure. TST aims to enhance a child’s ability to regulate emotions while diminishing the ongoing stresses and threats in the child’s social environment. By adopting this dual approach, 1) assessing a youth’s capacity to regulate emotions; and 2) assessing the safety of the social environment in which the youth lives, TST aims to help children gain control over strong emotions and behaviors, ultimately helping them succeed in school and life.

 

 

About Family Services of Westchester

Family Services of Westchester is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing Westchester County with a broad range of social and mental health services that strengthen and support families, children, and individuals at every stage of the life cycle. For more information, visit www.fsw.org, call 914-937-2320 and connect with us on twitter and Facebook @FSWestchester

 

 

About Westchester Community Foundation

Westchester Community Foundation’s mission is to connect generous people to the causes they care about and invest in transformative ideas and organizations to improve lives and strengthen our community. WCF is a division of the New York Community Trust, one of the largest community foundations in the country, with assets of approximately $2.6 billion.

 

 

 

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Announcing the FSW Star Gala: April 20, 2017: make your reservations today!

Honoring William Mooney Jr. and Helen Williams, FSW’s Star Gala 2017 promises to be the biggest and best yet! Click on the Save the Date card below or call the Development Department at 914-305-6876 to make your reservations today!

BBBS of Westchester celebrates Cornell Cares Day 2017!

Jan. 7, 2017: During the snowstorm on  Saturday, BBBS Westchester Littles were treated to a fun-filled day of winter arts & crafts with Cornell University Bigs for the day at the at the Sarah Lawrence College Center for the Urban River at Beczak Environmental Education Center in Yonkers. At Cornell Cares Day 2017, the kids and their Bigs participated in snow-themed activities, including snowflake and bird feeder making. They even learned how to purify water and make nature scenes using the newly-fallen snow. Yonkers City Hall was lit up in purple, BBBS’s signature color, to commemorate this special event. Click on the photos below to find out more about getting involved during January Mentor Month. 

FSW Families Enjoyed Thanksgiving Dinner

WHITE PLAINS, NY – November 30, 2016 – This Thanksgiving, more than 800 program participants and their families received a free holiday meal thanks to the collaborative efforts of Family Services of Westchester (FSW), Huguenot Memorial Church, Pelham Jewish Center, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Saint Catherine’s Rectory, Manor Market and other friends in Pelham and Bronxville. A special thanks to Tina Constable and Meghan Allen and all of our volunteers who packed and delivered boxes. Each Thanksgiving box, capable of feeding a family of eight, was distributed to the families FSW serves throughout Westchester including Mount Vernon, Pelham, Port Chester, Yonkers and Sleepy Hollow.

FSW facilitated referrals from several program social workers to ensure that the meals reach those in need; they are also responsible for coordinating the distribution of meals. On Tuesday, November 22nd, Thanksgiving meals were distributed to the families. “We are honored to be able to provide Thanksgiving meals to the families in our programs each year,” says Susan B. Wayne, President and CEO of FSW. “We are grateful to the organizations that partner with us and the support we’ve received from the volunteers that make this effort possible.”

About Family Services of Westchester

Family Services of Westchester is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing Westchester County with a broad range of social and mental health services that strengthen and support families, children, and individuals at every stage of the life cycle. For more information, visit www.fsw.org, call 914-937-2320 and connect with us on Instagram, twitter and Facebook @FSWestchester

Contact:  Michelle A. Nicholas, VP, Development and External Affairs
Email:  mnicholas@fsw.org
Phone:  914-305-6836

Three Children Adopted through FSW’s Therapeutic Foster Care Program in honor of National Adoption Day

PORT CHESTER, NY (November 16, 2016) — Family Services of Westchester (FSW) celebrates the adoption of three children from our Therapeutic Foster Care program into new families on National Adoption Day, Saturday, November 19th. The celebration is part of National Adoption Day that was founded in 2000 with a purpose of raising awareness of the more than 100,000 children currently in foster care in the United States.

Since 1953, FSW has been instrumental in matching children in the Therapeutic Foster Care program with families ready to provide a loving home. Today, we celebrate with the families and will continue to work hard with the aim of providing every child with a permanent family.

“This Friday we will be finalizing three adoptions and it is such a rewarding experience to watch these kids who started in our Therapeutic Foster Care become part of such loving families. Ms. J became a foster parent 5 years ago, taking care of a 7-year-old girl, and now they will be family,” said Karen Fink, Program Director, Therapeutic Foster Care. “We are always looking for great families to join our Therapeutic Foster Care program as foster parents.”

“National Adoption Day has become such a recognizable day throughout our communities. And that’s great! We believe that every child deserves a permanent, happy and loving family,” said Susan B. Wayne, President and CEO.

About Therapeutic Foster Care

The Therapeutic Foster Care (TFC) program offers loving, stable homes to children who, for various reasons, are unable to live with their birth parents or family members at the time. TFC serves children of all social, economic and ethnic backgrounds. Due to past trauma, these youth especially need homes and support of loving, nurturing foster parents. Through counseling and the support of their foster parents, the children are encouraged to acquire better self-control and improved social skills. For more information, contact Karen Fink, Director at 914-305-6842 or KFink@fsw.org.

About Family Services of Westchester (FSW)

Family Services of Westchester is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing Westchester County with a broad range of social and mental health services that strengthen and support families, children, and individuals at every stage of the life cycle. For more information, visit www.fsw.org, call 914-937-2320 and connect with us on twitter and Facebook @FSWestchester

Prime Time Preschool Program Fundraiser – November 17, 2016

FUNdraiser in support ofFAMILY SERVICES OF WESTCHESTER’s Prime Time Preschool Program for Children with Special  Needs

November 17, 2016  ALL DAY

california-pizza-kitchen-november-2016

Valid at the following location:
California Pizza Kitchen
365 Central Park Avenue
Scarsdale, NY 10583

Please Support Family Services of Westchester’s Prime Time Preschool Program and receive free flatbread upon your next visit.