How long have you been employed with CCFI?
I started working for CCFI in February of 2014.
Why were you moved to join CCFI as an employee?
After retiring from 31 years as a special education teacher and counselor in the public schools I wanted to continue working with families in some capacity. I strongly believe in early intervention for children in order to give them the best opportunity for growth and success in all areas of development. CCFI offered me the opportunity to work with young families to provide prevention and intervention services for children prenatally through age five. The "Bringing Up Babies" program provides caregivers with positive parenting strategies, child development activities and resource information as needed to provide them with the best supports. Unfortunately, child abuse and neglect can occur when caregivers feel ill-equipped and overwhelmed or lack basic parenting knowledge or resources to provide for their family. My work as a Parent Educator allows me to help caregivers build confidence in their parenting skills and develop strong bonds with their children.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
As a Parent Educator I have been able to help caregivers become more confident in their role as a parent. I enjoy helping parents connect with their child emotionally, provide them with the skills to share developmentally appropriate activities with their child and assist them in navigating community resources available to them in times of need.
What do you feel is the biggest impact CCFI has made on the community?
CCFI has made a huge impact in the lives of so many in the past 50 years. Families have been able to access services that help them stay connected to their children and remain involved in their lives through therapy, prevention and intervention programs. CCFI is uniquely qualified to provide comprehensive and cohesive services that help families develop positive and healthy relationships.
What would you like to say to encourage others to get involved with CCFI?
CCFI depends on the generosity of people and businesses in our community to financially sustain many of our services, including "Bringing Up Babies." Over the last few years there have been huge cuts to social service programs so it is crucial for our community to help financially and through volunteerism. Volunteering at CCFI could be a one time event or an ongoing opportunity. There are many ways to help! You can help by providing snacks for families at various programs, assist with set-up for events, sorting diapers in or diaper pantry or helping kids enjoy the holiday with a few gifts. I believe in volunteerism so much I even encouraged my own Dad to volunteer at CCFI and he now volunteers twice a week as our resident Mr. Fix-it.