Email from Megan Coppock, caseworker in Chester County in praise of Rebecca Piorko-Shelly, Visit Coach with JWYC-Chester:
“I would like to take a moment to let you know just how amazing our Visit Coach, Rebecca Piorko-Shelly has been with our family since she joined our “Case” in August of 2016. She was an integral part of our family for approximately 15 months. In that time frame she has gone absolutely above and beyond what was required of her. Rebecca worked so hard to ensure our visits were successful. She educated herself on Bobby’s* diabetes, helped us plan special outings for Bobby, provided transportation for every single visit, no matter how inconvenient it was for her, just to make sure Bobby was never disappointed. Rebecca grew very fond of Bobby and our entire family (my husband, myself and our older 2 sons) and provided very effective “therapy”, communication skills, parenting tools and behavior techniques that contributed in our success. She was the liaison between us and Bobby’s Foster parents, and on many many occasions she would sacrifice her own time to ensure our visit took place. That’s how vested she was in our success. Any family that has the privilege of her as their Visit Coach is absolutely blessed as they are acquiring a hardworking, professional, compassionate and knowledgeable asset to their Team. Rebecca makes being in such a difficult, often traumatic situation very bearable. We would not have been able to endure half of the heartache we went through had it not been for her.
Justice Works is very lucky to have such an amazing person on their team because she embodies every aspect of success. Our family is a true success story and Rebecca was an integral part of that success! I wish her all the happiness she has allowed our family to have, one hundred fold.
Mr. and Mrs. Smith*
*actual names are not used
Thank you, Megan Coppock for sharing this positive feedback and for being such a good working partner. Thank you, Rebecca, for “going above and beyond” for your clients and their family. Your dedication and contribution to the JWYC mission are appreciated and achieve positive outcomes.
Pictured: JWYC Visit Coach, Brenda Arellano
Brenda Arellano, JWYC Visit Coach, makes history by successfully closing our very first reunification case at our JWYC- Ohio branch! The referral was made to JusticeWorks because we had a skilled bilingual professional on staff.
Brenda worked diligently with the family since receiving the case on March 1, 2018. Not only did Brenda establish goals around the children’s needs and explained additional “next steps” for both parents to achieve reunification with their children; Brenda, whose native language is Spanish, also identified additional barriers that were presented while working with the family and with other Spanish speaking families, not only in Ohio but at all JWYC locations. Brenda assisted in the translation of JWYC documents from English to Spanish so that families understood the information presented and were better connected to the services provided by JusticeWorks YouthCare. Being able to communicate with the family and translate information was also beneficial as she frequently communicated with the family’s caseworker, supervisor, and GAL, by phone and submission of weekly progress reports, which helped to reunite the family in a little over two months; sooner than anticipated. The family was relieved that Brenda could not only understand them, but was also there to help break the communication barrier between all parties involved in their case.
Congratulations to Brenda for making JusticeWorks Ohio history and embracing our mission!
Ellen Miller, JWYC Supervisor in Adams County
JWYC Supervisor, Ellen Miller was recognized by Jessi Coy, Program Director at Adams County Children and Youth Services, through an agency-wide email regarding a FGDM meeting that was coordinated and facilitated by Ellen with the Adams County staff. Ellen and her team, consisting of Morgan Henson, Heather Smith, Tara Marquis, received praise, not only by Adams County CYS staff and other participants, but also by Kevin Campbell, who is an internationally known youth permanency expert, founder of the Center for Family Finding and Youth Connectedness, and developer of the Family Finding model. Great work, Ellen!
Email 1 – From Adam’s County CYS:
As part of our Family Engagement Initiative, we have an awesome opportunity to get feedback from Kevin Campbell on specific cases. Tonya* was one of those cases we brought to his attention and he provided some suggestions.
JWYC staff – Morgan Henson, Ellen Miller, Heather Smith, Tara Marquis, and many others worked hard to build her support network and schedule a meeting to surround Tonya* with love and care. That meeting happened on Tuesday night and yesterday. Tonya’s network will continue to grow as we move forward with building these supports!
What a testament to how hard everyone is working on building networks! Great job to everyone involved! More success stories to come.
Jessi Coy, MSW
Adams County Children & Youth Services
Email 2 – From a Foster Mother:
Just wanted to reach out and say that was an awesome gathering yesterday. It was informative, business-like yet personable and comfortable. Thanks for all you and the crew of people do. I know it’s not easy.
Have a good evening,
Update: The past six months, Tonya* does not require agency involvement for visits between her brother, and other family supports. These visits are happening naturally through the support of her foster family. Everyone involved is excited to hear about Tonya’s* success at the next Youth Transition Conference in August!
Thank you Ellen, Morgan, Tara, and Heather for your hard work and dedication to the JusticeWorks’ mission. Thank you, Jessi and Lori for your kind words and recognition of our staff.
(Email sent from Judge George of Adams County)
Over the last two days, there were a number of folks who spend time at the Statewide Family Group Decision Making conference coupled with a ½ day meeting concerning the Family Engagement Initiative. I want to do a “shout out” for the Adams County CYF team (Sara, Melissa T., and Morgan) and Ellen Miller, Supervisor, from JusticeWorks YouthCare. It was pretty impressive to note that Adams County provided more presenters during the work sessions than any other of the 67 counties across the state; each did a great job. It was even more impressive, and humbling, to listen to state-wide leadership in child welfare repeatedly and consistently reference the tremendous things happening in Adams County. Those things are happening only because of the efforts of each and all of you. Regardless your role, it is critical to our success and the success of the mission with which we have been trusted. As you may discover someday, the older in life one gets, the harder it is to find heroes. Listening to the repeated compliments aimed at Adams County made me reflect on and realize just how much each of you are heroes. You are leading by performance and, as a result, making the lives of others better. Importantly, people are noticing as your efforts are “raising the bar” statewide for the great benefit of our families and communities. All growth begins with a seed and whether you like it or not, you are blessed and tasked with being that seed. I am extremely proud of what you are doing. Please keep up the great work and thank you!
From: Judge George
Sent: Wednesday, April 18, 2018 11:39 AM
(Many thanks to Judge George of Adams County for the heartfelt words and praise. Thank you, to the Adams County CYF team and Ellen Miller, JWYC Supervisor, for the excellent collaborative efforts to convey what our employees do on a daily basis to assist children and families).
Carly Terensky of Avella High School is an exceptional young lady. Every year at Easter time, she ventures into the Washington County community and asks for people to sponsor her project in providing Easter baskets for children in need. Carly purchases all of the materials and goodies and creates amazing baskets that are truly awe-inspiring!
Carly stated that she is aware of the emotional impact on children in the foster care system and was inspired to create something special for these kids. She chose the Easter holiday to spread a little joy by helping out the Easter bunny!
This year, Carly made 60 Easter baskets and partnered with our JusticeWorks YouthCare staff to distribute the baskets to children in need. It was a successful community effort for all who participated.
Carly is a junior at the Avella High School and has plans to go to college after she graduates.
Email from Schuylkill County CYS:
I would like to extend appreciation for the above and beyond work that Vince Troutman performed with a family yesterday. He is an exceptional worker! It was evident that Vince knows the family very well, and was able to provide assistance to both the family and agency due to his competence and skills. Vince is very intuitive, and has amazing relational skills that allowed for him to interact with family members effectively. Vince offered support to transition the focus to a solutions-based approach. Great job!!!
Schuylkill County CYS
Thank you, Vince, for your dedicated professional expertise. Your contributions to the JWYC Mission are appreciated.