Dec. 31 will mark one year since a Putnam County couple’s foster child was declared drug-free for the first time in his entire life.
“It’s just been a roller coaster ride,” said Chris Crytzer, a nurse and resident of Hurricane.
“We’ve got a child who we can really make a difference in his life and I think we just cling to that.”
Crytzer and his wife, Mary, a mathematics instructor at Marshall University, will find out in the coming months if they’ll be able to adopt the boy they first met at age 10 months.
Now two years old, the boy is free of the drugs he was addicted to at birth.
“He had been in the hospital for life and never got to leave until he finally came to our house,” said Crytzer.
Listen to the news story and read the full WVMetroNews article here.
A recent WOWK-TV news story featured Pressley Ridge foster family The Crytzers and highlighted the great need for foster families to care for children affected by the opioid epidemic.
Check out the story here: http://www.wowktv.com/news/local-news/pressley-ridge-center-helps-foster-families/878787202
The Pressley Ridge Homebuilders program in Western Maryland received a Maryland General Assembly Official Citation of Recognition from MD Delegate, Aruna Miller. Delegate Miller spent time visiting with staff and learning about the program and the needs of our clients.
The Homebuilders program, located in Allegany County, MD is an intensive in-home program designed to assist children at risk of out of home placement, including families affected by parental substance use. Pictured from left to right are Amy Crowley, therapist, Delegate Aruna Miller, Mary Beth DeMartino, Program Director and Wendy McKenzie, Program Supervisor.
Laura O’Hara, Clinical Liaison at the Laurel Park program has a passion for running. Lucky for the youth at Laurel Park she is sharing her passion for this sport with them. As a Therapist, Laura often teaches self-regulation skills to the youth on her therapy caseload and for the past three months she has incorporated a twice per week Running Group with several of the young men at Laurel Park.
There were five young men who completed the group: Ben, Brandon, Nick, Chris, and Dustin. Originally the group was planned for 6 weeks, but the group was extended due to the participants wanting to continue. Over the course of the twelve weeks Laura entered the young men into several races and ran alongside them.
In August they ran the Ritchie Regional Health Care 5K (3.1 miles). Ben finished third in his age group and seventeenth overall at 24:51 (24 minutes/51 seconds). Ben also completed the Cooper's Rock Stump Jump 10K (6.2 miles) as the twelfth overall finisher at 57:37. In September they ran the FBI Jerry Dove 5K and Ben finished 1st in his age group at 23:34 and seventeenth overall. In October they ran the Salem Apple Butter Festival 5K. Three of the group finished this race: Dustin finished in 33:24 and fifth in his age group, Brandon finished in 37:49 and sixth in his age group, and Nick finished in 38:56 and seventh in his age group. The last race in October was Test the Watters. It was both a 10k and 5k race and Laurel Park had participants in both. Ben finished the 10k in 50:04 and was first in his age group and fourth overall. Nick finished the 5k in 36:19 and first in his age group and 24th overall with Dustin finishing in 36:19 and second in his age group and 26th overall. Dustin reports tripping over a stump and doing a face plant which resulted in a slower finish.
While completing these same races with the kids, Laura did not report her finish times. She did say that these young men have been very invested in this group and have improved their individual race times. Laura has done a great job with this group of young men and they have done very well in the races they have entered. Laura plans to continue to take members of this group to races through the rest of this race season and who knows, maybe next year? Time will tell.
Six students from the Day School Pittsburgh shared their artwork in the community by participating in the Annual Flowering of Insight Art Exhibit held in the Department of Human Services Building, One Smithfield Street, Pittsburgh.
The Flowering of Insight Art Exhibit began more than 20 years ago. The theme for this year’s exhibit was “I can…” and showcased artworks by artists ranging in age from youth to seniors. The exhibit was on display throughout the month of September, with an artists’ reception on Saturday, September 30th.
DaySchool Art Teacher MaryAnn Fabian helped to coordinate and plan the exhibit, along with representatives from other participating agencies, including Pittsburgh Mercy Health System, PA Connecting Communities and Milestone Centers.
On Saturday, September 23, 2017 Pressley Ridge – Delaware staff supported the 3rd Annual “Delaware Walks with Leah 5K Walk/Run” at the Christiana Mall located in Newark, DE. Hundreds were in attendance which presented a great opportunity to recruit and increase “friends” of Pressley Ridge. Pictured above are Marcie Byus, Recruiter with Ms. Delaware 2017, Chelsea Bruce, Tanya Johnson, TFC Supervisor and Leah Still with mother Channing Smythe.
We are excited to announce the publication of a new article that demonstrates how Pressley Ridge’s treatment foster care pre-service training significantly changes parenting attitudes and licensing rates compared to a basic pre-service training (Model Approach to Partnerships in Parenting [MAPP]). This publication brings us one step closer in the process of becoming evidence-based.
Stay tuned for updates on our evidence-based status for our pre-service training. Click here to read the full-text article.
Once again, Walsh Construction has generously supported Pressley Ridge by donating a portion of the proceeds from their annual golf outing. We are grateful for our partnership with Walsh, which also includes the Constructing Their Futures program for students at the Career Development Center and support for the Angel Tree drive during the holidays.
Maryland Community Health Resources Commission providing funds for HOMEBUILDERS® method
Allegany County, MARYLAND (August 1, 2017) – In response to the increasing need for support of families affected by opioid and other substance abuse in Allegany County, Pressley Ridge of Western Maryland has been awarded a grant in the amount of $350,000 from the Maryland Community Health Resources Commission (MCHRC) to provide intensive in-home services. Families eligible for services are those whose children are at an imminent risk of placement or those who are in placement and cannot return home without intensive in-home services. Risks for placement include children who are victims of abuse and/or neglect and those who have been exposed to risk factors such as substance abuse, domestic violence, mental health and/or other disabling conditions of the parents. Referrals will come from the Allegany County Department of Social Services.
Pressley Ridge will be utilizing the HOMEBUILDERS® model to deliver these services. HOMEBUILDERS® provides intensive, in-home crisis intervention, counseling and life-skills education for families who have children at imminent risk of placement in state-funded care. It is the oldest and best-documented Intensive Family Preservation Services (IFPS) program in the United States.
“The Commission is thrilled to support Pressley Ridge and the implementation of the HOMEBUILDERS® model in western Maryland,” said Mark Luckner, Executive Director, MCHRC. “This evidence-based program will help assist families experiencing substance use issues and will promote family preservation.” The grant to Pressley Ridge is one of 21 grant awards made by the MCHRC this year.
The goal is to prevent children from being unnecessarily placed out of their homes by providing intensive, on-site intervention in addition to teaching families new problem-solving skills to prevent future crises. The HOMEBUILDERS® program removes the risk of harm to the child instead of removing the child from their home environment. The HOMEBUILDERS® model will bring services directly into the home of identified families, making services accessible and consistent and outcomes more achievable.
“Pressley Ridge is thrilled to be able to work with our community partners to tackle the ever increasing problem of opioid addiction and the devastating impact this has on children and families,” said Mary Beth DeMartino, Director of Pressley Ridge of Western Maryland.
The United Way of Allegany County is also providing monetary and collaborative support. “We need the help of community partners, like Pressley Ridge, to address the unmet needs of individuals so that families have the necessary tools for a better path to success,” said Mary Beth Pirolozzi, Executive Director of County United Way, Inc. “We hope and expect that our partnership will result in a stronger, healthier community.”
ABOUT PRESSLEY RIDGE
For the past 185 years, Pressley Ridge has done whatever it takes to create success for children and families. Pressley Ridge’s innovative programming provides the foundation for building stronger families while constantly evolving to meet the needs of the community. From helping families in the community, to providing foster care services and educating children with special needs, including autism and deafness, Pressley Ridge empowers kids and families with the ability and confidence to succeed. Pressley Ridge serves communities in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland, Virginia and Delaware. For more information visit www.pressleyridge.org.
ABOUT MARYLAND COMMUNITY HEALTH RESOURCES COMMISSION
The Maryland Community Health Resources Commission (CHRC) was created by the Maryland General Assembly in 2005 to expand access in underserved communities. Since its inception, the Commission has awarded 190 grants totaling $60.3 million, supporting programs in every jurisdiction of the state. CHRC-supported programs have collectively served more than 330,000 Marylanders, most of whom are low-income and have complex health and social service needs. For more information, visit www.health.maryland.gov/mchrc.
As most of you are aware based on recent events in Charlottesville, VA, our country is embroiled in a discussion about race and racism. There is a great deal of divisiveness occurring within our communities that impacts those we serve but also all of us as individuals.
At Pressley Ridge, we believe our differences are our strengths. The combined experiences and talents of our staff, volunteers and the children, adolescents, adults and families we serve strengthen and enrich us as individuals, teams, partners and communities. Grounded in our mission to do whatever it takes to create success for our clients, we foster a culture that values all people, in all our rich and myriad differences, with acceptance and respect. Just as the clients we serve change and grow, so too does our organization and our society. Pressley Ridge is committed to doing more to promote diversity and to address disparities within our organization and our communities.
To this end, Pressley Ridge will not tolerate hate or racism in any form, nor discrimination against any person based on their color, ancestry, ethnicity, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical condition), gender (including gender identity and gender expression), age, national origin, perceived or actual sexual orientation, marital or familial status, military or veteran status, physical or mental disability, genetic information or any other classification protected by law with respect to any term or condition of employment.
Pressley Ridge values all of our employees, and it takes us all working together each and every day to achieve our mission. We stand strong because we stand together in our efforts to help ALL people. It is my hope that our compassion and kindness sets the example for others.
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