The TuscBDD Blog

TuscBDD Extra Mile Service Award

By Kerri Silverthorn   |   Tue, Jan 14th, 2020

TuscBDD Extra Mile Service Award Recipient:
Kayla McKnight

The Mission of TuscBDD is to enhance the lives of individuals with disabilities through quality services and community partnerships. We strive to go the Extra Mile with people that we serve and their families, community partners, colleagues, and community members.
 
The Extra Mile Service Award is a way of recognizing employees who go above and beyond their regular duties. This award recognizes an employee who is going the Extra Mile or exhibiting the Extra Mile Attitude in any of TuscBDD’s top value areas such as:
 
• People First Culture
• Respect
• Communication
• Education
• Teamwork
 
“We nominate Kayla McKnight. She hit the ground running when she started at TuscBDD and was strongly advocating for her caseload within the first week.  She’s dealt with a lot of difficult situations without missing a beat and is actively working to make a difference in the lives of those she serves. Kayla has worked diligently to assist R., an individual on her caseload, with switching day service providers. I know from working with R. over the years that big changes can be difficult for the team. She was persistent with helping the team to see that this change was what R. wanted and what was best for him.”
 
Kayla McKnight joined TuscBDD as Service and Support Administrator (SSA) on July 15, 2019.  Kayla’s previous experience includes being a Program Coordinator for Midwest Services in Wooster, being an Individual Small Group Instructor for North Canton Schools.  She has a B.S. in Education from Kent State University.   
 
Please join us in thanking Kayla for her Extra Mile Service in our community.
 
Nominated by: Candice Eckhardt, Amanda Burnsworth, & Stacy Savage

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TuscBDD Extra Mile Service Award

Kerri Silverthorn Tue, Jan 14th, 2020

TuscBDD Extra Mile Service Award Recipient:
Kayla McKnight

The Mission of TuscBDD is to enhance the lives of individuals with disabilities through quality services and community partnerships. We strive to go the Extra Mile with people that we serve and their families, community partners, colleagues, and community members.
 
The Extra Mile Service Award is a way of recognizing employees who go above and beyond their regular duties. This award recognizes an employee who is going the Extra Mile or exhibiting the Extra Mile Attitude in any of TuscBDD’s top value areas such as:
 
• People First Culture
• Respect
• Communication
• Education
• Teamwork
 
“We nominate Kayla McKnight. She hit the ground running when she started at TuscBDD and was strongly advocating for her caseload within the first week.  She’s dealt with a lot of difficult situations without missing a beat and is actively working to make a difference in the lives of those she serves. Kayla has worked diligently to assist R., an individual on her caseload, with switching day service providers. I know from working with R. over the years that big changes can be difficult for the team. She was persistent with helping the team to see that this change was what R. wanted and what was best for him.”
 
Kayla McKnight joined TuscBDD as Service and Support Administrator (SSA) on July 15, 2019.  Kayla’s previous experience includes being a Program Coordinator for Midwest Services in Wooster, being an Individual Small Group Instructor for North Canton Schools.  She has a B.S. in Education from Kent State University.   
 
Please join us in thanking Kayla for her Extra Mile Service in our community.
 
Nominated by: Candice Eckhardt, Amanda Burnsworth, & Stacy Savage

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Message from the Superintendent

Kerri Silverthorn Tue, Jan 14th, 2020

As we look into the year 2020 with hopeful vision and our sights on new goals, we also reflect on the year gone by, the challenges we encountered, and the accomplishments we achieved. It is the work that these employees do that ignites the energy needed for growth, support, collaboration, and success to occur. It is this outstanding work that has helped this agency to continue to pursue innovative solutions for our friends, family members, and co-workers who happen to have a developmental disability.

I want to acknowledge TuscBDD employees who work each day on behalf of people with developmental disabilities. I also want to acknowledge the people that we serve and their families who each day seek to learn, work, grow, advocate, support, and overcome.

As we forge ahead in this new year, TuscBDD wants to focus on community needs. Three areas of focus this year are: supporting our local school districts through the Starlight Specialized Service Program, investing in services to provide respite, residential, and treatment options for youth and adults in crisis, and working to help the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities with the development of a single statewide template for individual service plans (ISPs). We are hopeful that the objectives we plan to focus on will help individuals with developmental disabilities to further reach their goals.


Sincerely,
Nate Kamban
TuscBDD Superintendent 

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Poem - A Mother's Love

Sat, Dec 21st, 2019

A Mother's Love

Written by: Shannon Croley

"This child's autistic. Accept it's fate.

You need to get help before its too late".

You try to understand but just can't relate

You find yourself filling with anger and hate.

---The pain of a mother's love

The screaming, the tantrums, the struggles each day,

from a beautiful child that can't find his way.

You ask what he wants, he's unable to say.

You look in his eyes, but he's miles away.

---The strength of a mother's love

With patience, love and the passage of time, 

you finally come to some peace of mind.

He is what he is and I'm so glad he's mine.

---The pride of a mother's love

The times you wish the days were just through,

a smile or gesture is directed at you.

That's when you know you do the best you can do.

I truly feel blest that God gave me you.

---The power of a mother's love

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The 8th Sense

Kerri Silverthorn Fri, Dec 20th, 2019

Do you know someone with autism spectrum disorder (ASD)? Chances are that you do because 1 in 59 children are diagnosed with ASD according to estimates from the CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network. I have been interested in learning about autism since before my 6-year-old cousin with ASD entered into my life. Of course, knowing that he has ASD drives my interest even more. His mom and dad are wonderful parents that meet him where he is at each and every day while also challenging him to grow and learn. Raising a child with autism comes with its own set of challenges, and my only hope is that the information that I find can be used by someone that is trekking along on that journey.

Recently, I had the opportunity to attend the OCALICON19 conference where people from around the world gathered to discuss autism. I listened to many people on the spectrum and experts in the field share stories, experiences, and information. I learned what it is like to experience the world with sensory processing disorder (SPD). I also learned quite a bit about the 8th sense, interoception. This is the sense that helps the body to feel and understand what is happening on the inside of the body. People that struggle with interpreting the sensations of this sense may have trouble knowing when they feel hungry, full, hot, cold or thirsty. This was by far the best learning experience that I have had in regards to ASD. The two speakers for this particular session were Chloe Rothschild and Kelly Mahler. I enjoyed this session so much, that I thought I would share some of my favorite links below.

Click here to watch a video 

Click here to read about interoception

Click here to look at Kelly & Chloe's interoception workbook

Click here to visit Kelly's website

Click here to follow Chloe on Facebook

Click here to visit Chloe's website

Click here to visit OCALI's website

Click here to visit Milestones Autism Resources website

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A Tribute to Veterans

Lynn Angelozzi Mon, Nov 18th, 2019

In November, I would like to take the opportunity to celebrate all veterans. Veteran’s Day is a tribute to military veterans who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces. Originating in 1919 when President Woodrow Wilson marked a year since the end of the First World War, the day coincides with other days of remembrance around the world including Armistice Day in the United Kingdom and Remembrance Day across the Commonwealth of Nations. Not to be confused with Memorial Day, which honors those who died while in service, Veterans Day honors all military veterans, including the living. The Tuscarawas County Board of Developmental Disabilities is proud to have four veterans in our ranks:

Keith Stoneman, IT Coordinator

US Army from 1991 to 1996

Drew Litty, Facilities Manager

US Marines for 5 years

Devin Williams, Service & Support Administrator

US Army for 10 years

Ben Kolbrich, Behavior Support Specialist

US Navy from 1998-2001

We thank these co-workers for their service to our country and acknowledge the sacrifices that all veterans have made and continue to make for our freedoms.  

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New School Year - New School Gear

Kerri Silverthorn Fri, Jul 12th, 2019

With summer break already halfway finished, Starlight School Specialized Service Program and Preschool staff are getting ready for the new school year. This year, children can expect to receive intervention and lessons with the new school robot, Milo, play on the new basketball court, and take a rest on the donated buddy bench.

Because of a grant that TuscBDD received from the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities, Starlight School now has a Milo robot. Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) that attend Starlight School/Preschool will participate in lessons with Milo that improve their social and behavioral skills. Lessons will be facilitated by TuscBDD's Occupational Therapy Assistant, Farrah Raines, and TuscBDD's Speech-Language Pathologist, Katy Ganz. To learn more about how Milo will help children with ASD, please visit https://robots4autism.com/milo/.    

The Tuscarawas Film Festival donated a $500 gift to Starlight School that helped enable construction of a new basketball half-court on the campus. The donation was presented by Quaker Cinema owner, Mike Ernest, and fellow Film Festival volunteers in May. The construction of the court is now complete and ready for students.    

Mr.Andrew Wilsterman presented Starlight School with a Buddy Bench. The Buddy Bench’s mission is to teach children about kindness and help those struggling with loneliness on the playground to feel included. Mr. Wilsterman, the founder of the Good Neighbor Project, started the Buddy Bench project with the guidance and direction from local resident and supporter of the Good Neighbor Project, Mary Ann Lauber. His message to the students was, “If you see someone that needs a buddy, be a buddy. Everybody has the power within themselves to reach out to someone else, and we all know how good it feels when someone reaches out and helps us."

Samantha Wottle & Enoch Wright of STEAM Centers commissioned the bench for Starlight School. STEAM Centers is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit based in New Philadelphia, Ohio. Their mission is to provide exciting, educational experiences for children and families. STEAM strives to create interest in science, technology, engineering, art and music. STEAM provides opportunities to explore integrated approaches to various topics.

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