The Arc of Schuyler Board of Directors Board President, Michael Stamp announced the nonprofit organization has begun an annual membership and fund drive to support people with disabilities.
The campaign will recruit new members and renew commitments from current members. The Arc is hoping to increase its membership in 2015.
Through membership, community members become advocates for people with developmental and other disabilities.
Partnerships with NYSARC, Inc. and The Arc of the United States allow The Arc of Schuyler to advocate for legislative issues at the state and federal levels. Memberships numbers strengthen the agency's voice within NYSARC and The Arc with issues such as housing, education, and transportating and maintaining funding for services for people with disabilities and their families.
"Our most important appeal of each year is our membership campaign," said Stamp. "Please join us and help us to support our mission to enable people with disabilities and others in the community to lead lives of purpose and to reach their fullest potential. I am asking the community and The Arc of Schuyler family to renew their memberships or to become members for the first time. Membership matters and it will make a difference for families and impact lives in many ways."
Those interested in becoming a member may simply make a donation to The Arc of Schuyler online by clicking the 'Donate' button below or mailing a donation to: The Arc of Schuyler, 203 12th Street, Watkins Glen, NY 14891.
The Arc of Schuyler offers shredding services, open to the public* every Monday from 9:30 - 11:30 AM at The Arc of Schuyler, 203 12th Street in Watkins Glen. A donation to The Arc of Schuyler is optional, but appreciated. Click the image at left for PDF flyer to print. Please Note: Our next shred day will be July 20 and will continue every Monday after.
Customers may bring approved items for free, quick, and confidential shredding while they wait. Approved items include: copy paper, pamphlets, brochures, envelopes, letters, ledgers, medical records, tax forms, bank statements, and junk mail. Items that cannot be shredded include: carbon paper, waxed paper, catalogs, magazines, napkins/cups, 3-ring binders, plastic materials, food or candy wrappers, and CDs or DVDs. Shredded paper materials will be recycled.
Shredding Day is a community service project organized and completed by staff and people receiving supports through The Arc of Schuyler.
*We request no more than 2 boxes per person and no commercial shredding. There is a charge for businesses. Businesses can call 607.535.6934 for assistance and pricing.
New signage, a redesigned website and printed materials are some recent changes that can be seen at The Arc (pronounced “ark”) of Schuyler, a nonprofit organization that has been providing supports to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families for 37 years.
The Arc of Schuyler is headquartered in Watkins Glen, NY, but services are provided throughout the county. The changes are both practical and philosophical.
“We want people to understand our affiliation with The Arc of the US, a nationally recognized organization that is made up of a network of nearly 700 state and local chapters across the country”, said Jeannette Frank, Executive Director of The Arc of Schuyler. "Marketing for nonprofits is no different than marketing for any other organization. Brands are important and help people identify with products and organizations. Nationally, The Arc worked with all of its affiliates to come up with one recognizable logo and message and Schuyler is updating all of our public presence to recognize that brand,” said Frank.
The reference to The Arc vs ARC has some more important philosophical reasons that go beyond ''political correctness”. The Arc of the US website explains why the name change from “ARC” to “The Arc” matters.
“We as an organization have been sensitive to the impact of terminology on our constituency and have adapted accordingly. As the words 'retardation' and 'retarded' became pejorative, derogatory and demeaning in usage, the organization changed its name to 'The Arc.' Today, the term 'mental retardation' remains the terminology used in the medical field and referenced in many state and federal laws. However, 'intellectual disability' and 'developmental disability' are making their presence known, and we are doing everything in our power to make sure they're adopted more broadly. We strongly believe the only 'r-word' that should be used when referring to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities is “Respect”.”
A broad range of resources is available to the general public through The Arc’s website. The Autism NOW Center (autismnow.org) contains up to date information for people with autism and their families. Information for educators, siblings, self-advocates, the legal and medical community and others is available through The Arc covering topics such as public policy, future planning, heath, research and resources.”
The Arc of Schuyler provides supports to over 200 people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. The organization also operates Glen Industries, Seneca Shine Auto Detailing, Franklin Street Gallery, and Schuyler County Transit. For more information about The Arc of Schuyler, visit the new website at www.arcofschuyler.org or you can find The Arc of Schuyler on Facebook and Twitter.
Throughout the month of April, The Arc of Schuyler coordinated an agency wide pet supply drive to benefit the Humane Society of Schuyler County in support of the NYSARC Gives Back Project 2015.
The Arc collected pet food and treats, blankets, pet toys, collars, dog clothing, and other supplies. Members of the community also generously contributed to the collection. Mike (left) and Connor (right) (pictured with support staff Janet Osborn) are animal lovers who were eager to represent The Arc by delivering the donations to the Humane Society.
Mike and Connor took a tour of the new Humane Society bulding with Director, Georgie Taylor and met a number of pets available for adoption.
People receiving supports through The Arc volunteer at local non profit organizations such as Office for the Aging, local food pantries and community gardens, Watkins Glen Library, Seneca View Skilled Nursing, and others througout the year. If you are a non profit seeking volunteers, contact us at 607.535.6934.
This story is one of many examples of how chapters of NYSARC, Inc and the people they support give back to their local communties. For more examples, click here.
Click the image above to read our Annual Membership and Fund Drive 2015 Appeal
Families, advocates, and people with intellectual and developmental across New York State are urging State legislators and Gov. Cuomo to include adequate funding in the New York State Budget to meet the critical need for supports and services for people with developmental disabilities.
Chapters of NYSARC, Inc., a statewide organization supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities are working to bring to the public’s attention the difficulties families already encounter when trying to access services.
“Changes in government policy will only make the situation worse for families,” says Mike Doherty, executive director of the Chemung County Chapter of NYSARC. “In November 2014 bills that were approved by the State Senate and Assembly were sent to the Governor’s Office and seen as essential to address the growing waiting list of people living at home who need residential services and other supports. Unfortunately, the Governor vetoed those bills.”
Jeannette Frank, executive director of the Schuyler County Chapter of NYSARC reiterated disappointment in the Governor’s vetoes.
“Many people with intellectual and developmental disabilities live at home with their families and their parents are their primary caretaker,” Frank said. “As children age out of school the whole family loses support networks the school once provided. In order to receive support that continues into adulthood, the family needs to have their child with special needs qualify through the NYS Office for People with Developmental Disabilities’ “Front Door”. Once qualified, the options being offered to families are being limited. Families are understandably under a lot of stress because of the speed at which the State is trying to transform the system.”
NYSARC officials are calling for more attention and resources for appropriate housing options, training and maintaining professional direct support staff, and expanded opportunities for people with developmental disabilities to lead a fulfilling life.
Tom and Nancy Ruda are parents who think outside the box and with two adult daughters who have intellectual and developmental disabilities, they have to.
Tom and Nancy’s oldest daughter Katie is 35 and lives with them at their home in Watkins Glen, NY. In addition to an intellectual disability, Katie has significant medical needs and relies on her parents for support. “She used to be able to cook for herself, but now she gets confused and I have to give her instructions on simple steps and tasks like how to boil potatoes,” Nancy said.
“I have to fill her medications and if we don’t help her, she’ll take the wrong one,” Tom added. Katie had been self-sufficient for years, but her parents recognize that her body is aging rapidly and her memory is fading.