|Sharon Woodrow, Superintendent
PO Box 156, Batavia, OH 45103
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Loveland Legion Makes Donation
Members of the Loveland American Legion Post 256 and Ladies Auxiliary hosted an All American Picnic on May 15 for individuals from the Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities. Over 140 adults and their families/providers attended and enjoyed an evening of food, games, and fellowship. Two checks were presented during the picnic, to assist CCDD with planning activities at the Legion throughout the summer and fall.
Bill Kern, a past member of the Loveland Legion, and his wife, Carol, were volunteers for the CCDD agency for many years. Affectionately known to everyone as “Momma and Papa” Kern, they helped organize two dances for CCDD participants each summer as well as cornhole and bingo nights in the fall. It was in 2010 that Papa Kern approached the Legion members about a donation to help cover costs associated with the activities. A $1,000 was initiated and given every year since then. This year, however, the donation was bittersweet.
Both the Kerns have now passed away; Momma Carol in 2009, and Papa Bill in January of this year. The Kerns’ son and daughter-in-law, Mike and Emily, worked with Papa Kern last year to take over managing the events. It was their idea to host a spring picnic, so the Legion members could meet many of the individuals from CCDD and learn how their donations were being used.
“We thought a picnic would be a perfect fun way for our members to stop by after work and meet everyone,” said Emily Kern, who is also a member of the Loveland Legion Ladies Auxiliary. “That way, our membership could familiarize themselves with those who participate in CCDD events and know their donation is helping fund social activities for them.”
Post Commander Dave Casteel and other members were there as the $1,000 Legion check was presented to participants and staff of CCDD, greeting individuals and serving them dinner throughout the event. Members of the Ladies Auxiliary also presented a $100 check in Momma Kern’s name, as a way of helping keep her memory alive as well.
“We are honored that the Legion has been so good to our Activity Program and the people who have attend the events for so many years,” said Lisa Davis, CCDD Director of Community Relations. “We are very thankful to have met Momma and Papa Kern all those years ago, and are excited that Mike and Emily are continuing their legacy of organizing social events for people with developmental disabilities in our community.”
Although the summer is just beginning and the CCDD events scheduled for August, September, and October, plans are already in process for next year’s spring picnic.
“Maybe we will call it the ‘Momma and Papa Kern’ All American Picnic next year,” said Emily Kern. “That way, their memory will live on forever.”
May Board Meeting & Graduation Announcement
The Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCDD) will hold its regular monthly meeting on Monday, May 20 at the Thomas A. Wildey Center, located at 2040 US Highway 50, Batavia. The meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Early Childhood Conference Room.
On Wednesday, May 22, CCDD will join with West Clermont, Milford, and Goshen Local School Districts to honor the Wildey School Class of 2013 at a graduation ceremony. The event begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Wildey School cafeteria and recognizes Matthew Osterling of Union Township, Andrew Poff of Miami Township, and Justin Witt of Stonelick Township.
Please call (513) 732-4921 for more information.
CCDD Holds Auction
The Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCDD) will hold an auction on Saturday, May 18 at 10 a.m. at the Thomas A. Wildey Center, 2040 US Highway 50, Batavia (one mile west of Owensville). The auction will be held in the Wildey Warehouse located behind the center.
Items to be auctioned include miscellaneous office furniture, a Reese fifth-wheel hitch, two pallets of gym mats/pads, two Delta down draft tables, two Hobart mixers, one Kubota riding mower, and various lawn equipment. Additional items will be auctioned as well. To view a complete list of featured items with photos, visit auctionzip.com, User #7414.
Payment can be made by cash or check with photo ID. Credit cards accepted are VISA, Master Card, or Discover Card with a 3% service fee. A 10% buyer’s premium will be applied to ALL sale totals.
The sale will be handled by Lewis Auctioneering, David P. Lewis and David S. Lewis. For questions about the auction, call James Taylor, CCDD, (513) 732-4888.
PRIME Training Offers Job Exploration at CCDD
Marty Rains of Bethel chats with the hostess at Rincon Mexicano Restaurant in Eastgate. Rains and other individuals from CCDD had dinner at Rincon after one of their PRIME training classes, in an effort to use skills they learned in class to promote independence while practicing employment skills.
Like most adults, Marty Rains is interested in getting a job. What type of job? He’s not sure. What kind of skills does he need to be successful? He’s not sure about that, either. That is why he participated in PRIME training at the Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCDD), and loved every minute of it.
PRIME (which stands for Promoting Real, Inclusive, Meaningful Employment) is a curriculum designed by Krista Clinebell to assist individuals with developmental disabilities in job seeking endeavors. Clinebell is the Activity Program Coordinator for the CCDD Adult Services Division and writes many curriculums for adults who participate in traditional sheltered workshop settings at CCDD. She created PRIME to offer a comprehensive learning experience about community employment options while presenting community choices, neighborhood exploration, and independence.
“We created this unique opportunity for people who are preparing for competitive employment,” said Clinebell. “By combining professional classes with experiences in the community, we were able to learn about each person’s talents and gifts, while making connections in their neighborhoods.”
The basic concept: Nine individuals enrolled in the CCDD Adult Services Program were asked to participate in the PRIME pilot project. They participated in their daily work routine January through April. This included mobile work crews, contracted jobs, and sheltered workshop opportunities. As their regular work days on Tuesdays and Wednesdays came to a close, they attended educational classes at the Batavia Township Community Center. The classes were held from 2:00 to 3:15 p.m. and focused on many subjects: Personal Awareness and Responsibility, Social Etiquette and Manners, Confidence in Self and Community, and Professionalism. When the class ended at 3:15 p.m., the individuals and staff separated into three groups to visit public places in their respective neighborhoods. The goal was to apply what they had learned in class within their community.
Additional classes were taught on Thursdays by the CCDD Community Employment Department. These classes were held on site at CCDD and focused on real-work scenarios. Skills such as how to interview, how to retain a job and many other employment aspects were discussed at length during this segment of the PRIME training.
“In our efforts to continue to encourage individuals with developmental disabilities to find jobs in the community, this was a method to better connect those people with their communities,” said Dan Ottke, Adult Services Director. “We hope by making these connections, employers in their neighborhoods will get a chance to know them for the great people they are and the skills they have to offer.”
Rains hopes this is the case as well. Since beginning PRIME training four months ago, he has already learned greater self-advocacy skills and independence. When visiting Jungle Jim’s on a PRIME community outing, Rains told CCDD staff he wouldn’t be able to walk through the store.
“Mobility problems have hindered Marty’s ability to do much shopping in the past,” said Clinebell.
When the staff offered Rains a motorized cart, he told her he had never been given this as an option in any store. He didn’t know how to ask for assistance, so he never shopped in large stores.
“We were amazed at how quickly he learned to use the cart and began shopping on his own,” said Clinebell. “Now he has learned one of many ways to be more independent, and he has more confidence to ask for assistance whenever he needs it.”
Speaking up for yourself in an appropriate manner is just one of many skills that can help obtain or retain employment. Other skills such as properly placing an order at a restaurant, paying for your meal on your own, or asking for a receipt when making a purchase at a store are all skills that help build independence, a necessity when job seeking. These skills and more were discussed during PRIME classes and then tested in the community immediately following each class. Along with visiting Jungle Jim’s, the groups visited local restaurants and coffee shops, the Clermont County Public Library, Eastgate Pools, several car dealerships, HH Gregg, neighborhood fire and police stations, and Eastgate Mall.
The class ended April 17, much to the disappointment of class members. They hoped it would go on forever, but now it’s time for them to start filling out applications and going through the real motions themselves.
When the class was asked if they enjoyed the PRIME experience, Rains was one of the first to speak up. “I really enjoyed getting to know my local coffee shop and all the new people there,” he said. “I feel more ready for a job, especially the interview.”
Clinebell and the Adult Services team are currently recruiting members from the CCDD Adult Services Department for the next PRIME class, which is slated to begin July 9.
“This has truly been a positive experience for everyone involved,” said Clinebell. “A sense of community and support was created within the group, which will continue long after the classes end. I am excited to see where this experience leads each person.”
April Board Meeting
The Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCDD) will hold its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, April 25 at the Thomas A. Wildey Center, located at 2040 US Highway 50, Batavia. The meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Early Childhood Conference Room.
Please call (513) 732-4921 for more information.
March Board Meeting
The Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCDD) will hold its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, March 28 at the Thomas A. Wildey Center, located at 2040 US Highway 50, Batavia. The meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Early Childhood Conference Room.
Please call (513) 732-4921 for more information.
Howell and Justice Win CCDD DWTS
Lori Howell and Don Justice of Milford are the 2013 winners of Clermont’s “Dancing with the Stars” Extravaganza. The March 2 event was sponsored by the Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCDD) and their non-profit board, Clermont DD Empowers Me. Proceeds from the night benefited the Gift of Time Respite Cooperative Program at CCDD.
A total of eight couples competed in the competition after taking lessons in January and February at The Dance Club Studio. Those couples were: Todd and Julie Schreiber of Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries; Meg Kasarcik, CCDD retiree, and Chris Brown of CCDD; Mary Hufford, Glen Este Middle School teacher, and Michael Ball, Administrative Assistant/Athletic Director at Glen Este Middle School; Gloria Cummins, Williamsburg High School Teacher and Steve Cummins, Wells Fargo; Jacqueline Poynter of Victory Community Bank and Don Goins, avid dance enthusiast; Kristin Bednarski of The Clermont Sun and William Rover, owner/manager of Jersey Mike’s Subs in Mason; Haley Dunn of CCDD and Tim Dunn of Xavier University’s Center for Faith and Justice.
“Each person in the audience had the opportunity to cast one vote during the dinner,” said Sharon Woodrow, CCDD Superintendent. “The dancers were allowed to sell votes as soon as they made the decision to dance in the competition, as well as during the event. Votes sold 4 for $1.00.”
Howell, a licensed massage therapist from Milford, and Justice, designer and operator of Don Justice Cabinet Makers of Milford, won the Mirror Ball Trophy by raising 10,056 votes in the competition. Kasarcik and Brown received the Judges Choice Award for the hard work they put into their cha-cha routine.
Steve Norris, WLWT-Channel 5 Meteorologist, returned for the third year in a row as Master of Ceremonies. During the registration networking hour, Chris Carr from B-105’s “Chris Carr & Company” participated in a Meet and Greet with guests. Jason Dimaculangan, one-half of the duo who won the Judges Choice Award trophy in last year’s competition, interviewed the audience after each couple performed.
Judges for the night were Jeff Bill, Marilyn Leal, and Kelli Strick of The Dance Club Studio where most of the dancers received their lessons. Kathy Lehr, Vice President of External Relations and Marketing for the YMCA of Greater Cincinnati, returned as a judge this year as well.
Event sponsors were The Rodenberg Family Trust, Tim and Laurel Vogel, David Uible Commissioner, Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries, Stepping Stones, and Park National Bank. Raffle sponsors included General Mobility Repair, Lykins Oil, Lori Howell, Clermont DD Staff, and many more.
For more information about upcoming fundraisers or CCDD in general, contact Lisa Davis, Community Relations Director, at (513) 732-4921 or email@example.com.
March is DD Awareness Month
Community Press Guest Column by Lisa Davis
March is “Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month” across the nation. Each year, our agency plans lots of events to recognizing the accomplishments of those with developmental disabilities. We are so fortunate that community citizens often take time to recognize our individuals as well.
Our county government has supported people with developmental disabilities for many years. This year during their meeting on February 27, the Clermont Commissioners presented an awareness month proclamation and honored our Records Management mobile work crew for their outstanding work ethics.
A little history: In 2004, Barbara Brown from Clermont County Records Management contacted the Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCDD) because her department was given the task of preparing boxes of county documents to be scanned onto DVDs for better records retention. Her hope was that CCDD could supply a mobile work crew of individuals to prepare each file for scanning (remove staples/paperclips, smooth wrinkles, keep the file in order, etc.). The CCDD Work Services Department jumped at the chance to put together a crew and nine years later, they are still going strong under the leadership of Barb and her staff.
Barb’s department has made Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month special for the individuals on the mobile work crew in many ways over the years. For 2013’s awareness event, Barb approached the Commissioners and asked that the crew be honored during the February 27 session to thank them for their years of service. She even contacted Governor Kasich (who was unable to attend, but sent his congratulations to the group).
At the beginning of the February 27 meeting, Commissioner Ed Humphrey presented the DD Awareness Month Proclamation and invited Barb to the podium to talk about the work crew’s nine years of success with the Records Department. After introductions, Barb honored each crew member with kind words and a plaque to commemorate their hard work. Then it was back to the Records office for a pizza party celebration because, let’s face it—who doesn’t like to celebrate with pizza?
This was the official kickoff to a month full of events…and what a way to kick it off! Our annual “Dancing with the Stars” Extravaganza fundraiser for respite was held on March 2. Individuals across the state met with legislators in Columbus on March 5 during the DD Awareness and Advocacy Day. Our own Wildey Comets played a great game of basketball against Sheriff Tim Rodenberg’s All Stars on March 8; the Comets will play again on March 26 in a fun game against our staff. And on March 25, we’ll hold our internal dancing event called “Dancing with Our Stars” that features some of the best talent our Adult Services Department has to offer.
Have you seen our billboards throughout the county? This awareness campaign will run throughout March in conjunction with Hamilton, Butler, and Warren County DD programs. Clermont’s billboards feature a picture of Lindsey Wright who works at the Holiday Inn and Suites Eastgate. Watch for Lindsey’s picture on a billboard near you…you’ll see her bright smile from a mile away!
All of this brings to light the fact that there was a time when people with disabilities were overlooked in society or treated unfairly because of their disorders. Not today and certainly, never in Clermont County. Citizens who have developmental disabilities have always been a part of our county community. They continue to be and are living meaningful lives, enjoying what life has to offer. Thank you for supporting people with developmental disabilities in our county…because of YOUR SUPPORT, I am proud to call Clermont County my home.
Pictured above: The Clermont County Records Management Department honored the CCDD Mobile Work Crew for nine years of service during their kickoff to DD Awareness Month. Pictured from left are Barbara Brown, Records Manager; Nick Hoover, Records Department; Laurie Tackett, CCDD; Michael Wilhelm, CCDD; Anita Brinson, CCDD Supervisor; Hazel Hoskins, CCDD; Mary Platt, CCDD; and Tracy Fischer, Records Department.
Regular Monthly Board Meeting
The Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCDD) will hold its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, February 28 at the Thomas A. Wildey Center, located at 2040 US Highway 50, Batavia. The meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Early Childhood Conference Room.
Please call (513) 732-4921 for more information.
DWTS Tickets Now on Sale
Tickets are now on sale for the fourth annual Clermont County “Dancing with the Stars” Extravaganza which takes place on Saturday, March 2 at the Holiday Inn and Suites, Eastgate.
Doors open at 5 p.m. Tickets are $50 and include dinner, entertainment, and the chance to watch local Clermont County “stars” dance the Swing and Cha-Cha in a friendly competition for the Mirror Ball Trophy. Open dancing occurs from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. and is included with each ticket purchase.
Couples participating in the competition include Lori Howell, licensed massage therapist from Miami Township and Don Justice, Cabinet Makers of Milford; Kristin Bednarski of the Clermont Sun and William Rover, owner/manager of Jersey Mike’s Subs, Mason; Tim Dunn, Xavier University Center for Faith and Justice, and Haley Dunn, CCDD Bridges to Transition Coordinator; Todd and Julie Schreiber of Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries; Meg Kasarcik, CCDD retiree and Chris Brown, CCDD Behavior Support Specialist…and more!
Dancers will perform after dinner. While votes are being tallied, special performances will take place including a dance by last year’s winners Guy and Kristy Guckenberger.
All couples are trained by Jeff Bill of the Dance Club Studio. Each year, Bill and his staff teach group and individual classes, and prepare the couples for their final show. Bill will attend as a guest judge again this year, as will Kathy Lehr, Vice President of External Relations and Marketing for the YMCA of Greater Cincinnati.
WLWT Meteorologist Steve Norris will once again serve as Master of Ceremonies for the event. Norris has worked with CCDD at many events including the Summer and Other Adventures Expo at Tri-County Mall for several years. This makes his third year serving as emcee for the DWTS Extravaganza.
A raffle will take place throughout the night and features gift baskets created by staff from various departments of the Clermont County Board of Developmental Disabilities, as well as donations from the community. Dancers have also made donations to the raffle including free massage therapy visits, a painting by local artist Greg Werling, and more.
Sponsors of the “Dancing with the Stars” Extravaganza include Tim and Laurel Vogel, and Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries.
All proceeds of the event will benefit the CCDD Gift of Time Respite Cooperative Program.
To purchase tickets online, visit the Events Page at www.empowersmeboard.org. Visa, MasterCard, checks, and cash are accepted by calling (513) 732-5028 or by emailing Suzanne Diesel at firstname.lastname@example.org.