40 Days of Positivity 2022 Calendar

As we find ourselves waiting for Spring to arrive, much like a Pennsylvanian groundhog ducking back into his borough, it is easy to only focus on the dark parts of the story that surround us.

While looking forward to warmer days, shorter nights, and the celebration of Easter, Passover, and Ostara, we encourage everyone to seek out positivity in our thoughts and actions.

Here at BCC, we use the model of the western Christian observance of Lent, a period of self-reflection in the 40 days leading up to the celebration of Easter. As a diverse and interfaith organization, we encourage our community to seek out the good and the positive in a time where darkness can be so prevalent.

To help in this endeavor, we have developed a 40 day calendar with prompts for thoughts and actions modeled around the core values of BCC. We encourage everyone to participate in this as a joint effort for team members, residents, and our surrounding communities.

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BCC’s Leadership Statement on the Kyle Rittenhouse Verdict


May God bless you with anger

At injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people.
So that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace

May God bless you with tears,
To shed for those who suffer pain, rejection, hunger, and war.
So that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain to joy.

And may God bless you with enough foolishness
To believe that you can make a difference in the world.
So that you can do what others claim cannot be done to bring justice and kindness to all our children and the poor.

– A Franciscan Blessing

On Friday, November 19th, 2021, a “not guilty on all counts” verdict related to Kyle Rittenhouse was announced to the world. This verdict reopened wounds for many and reminded us that justice seems out of reach and many times not just for people of color. It is clear, we still have a long way to go in achieving a racially just and equitable society. This verdict, while extremely disappointing, is not an anomaly. In addition, there are a variety of opinions and feelings about the verdict.

Board of Child Care stands with and by our colleagues of color. You have our support, our voice, our empathy, and our action. We will use our power, platform, and privilege to lead meaningful, strategic, and systemic change at BCC. We will change what we can and know that making a place where everyone in our BCC experiences a healthy culture where each of us can engage with joy and purpose is one of our most important challenges. We will use our empathy skills to seek first to understand and work hard to find common ground in our rich diversity at BCC.

Coping as a Community

Speak up when you experience or witness intolerance, mistreatment, or bias in action. No matter what the issue, say something. If you don’t know what to say, start by asking, “What did you mean by that?” Listen, then respond calmly based on facts. Saying nothing when such instances arise condones the discrimination or microaggression. Here’s a powerful and short clip on microaggressions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDd3bzA7450.

Create an inclusive environment for everyone. Seek different perspectives and respect points of view and communication styles that are different from your own. Don’t know how to talk about race? The National Museum on African American History and Culture offers a great resource – check it out here: https://nmaahc.si.edu/learn/talking-about-race.

Process your feelings. Disappointments like this can feel traumatizing, especially for members of marginalized groups. Talking to your supervisor, in teams, with friends and loved ones can help. BCC also makes mental health resources available for times when you may need more support through an Employee Assistance Program.

Flex Our Core Value of EMPATHY. Seek first to understand, as there may be differences of opinion. Try to stand in your colleagues’ shoes to understand what support they might need to feel community and belonging at BCC.

We can only heal and grow better together by listening and learning, by having courageous conversations, and by cultivating a trusting environment where all people feel safe, respected, and empowered to voice their ideas, thoughts, and concerns. When we behave this way, we can set an example for our communities in the Mid-Atlantic. We need to do better—and we can.

Warmly,

Laurie Anne “LA” Spagnola
President & CEO

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Our 2021 re-accreditation site visit is complete!

Some reflections from BCC’s Chief Operating Officer

We just finished a three-day virtual site visit with CARF international and EAGLE, BCC’s two national accreditation bodies. Seven reviewers (4 from CARF, 3 from EAGLE) from across the United States and Canada spent time making sure BCC was meeting the mark across 1,700 + different standards. These ranged from governance and leadership, to finance, to program operations, to client rights.
This was a re-accreditation visit for BCC.  We get recertified every three years by CARF, and every four years by EAGLE.  Due to the pandemic, we were not able to do our visit last year, so we worked with both CARF and EAGLE to complete this accreditation jointly between the two teams.  We would usually welcome our reviewers onto campus for several days, but had to adapt to a virtual-only visit this go round.  Lots of time spent on MS Teams!
So how did we do?  Both EAGLE and CARF teams had their exit debriefs yesterday.  These are unofficial, verbal downloads of what the reviewers will be putting in their reports.  In both cases, we will not get the official report until CARF and EAGLE have both reviewed the site visit notes.  BCC holds these accreditations to learn how we can improve and do better.  There were some areas they recommended we adjust to better meet certain standards, but overall I am extremely pleased with how we did. We received compliments on the content and quality of our client and HR charts and even got some kudos on some things that BCC is doing that they are not seeing other organizations do in our space (especially in the areas of advocacy, state-level partnership to serve new populations, our alumni grant program, and the Caminos program).
At the end of the review, I’m proud to see we received perfect marks in the following categories!
  • Leadership
  • Governance
  • Strategic Planning
  • Financial Planning and Management
What happens next?
  • In both cases, the reviewers make a recommendation up to CARF/EAGLE, who will then officially deliver our accreditation result.
  • Once we get our official results, we’ll submit a Quality Improvement Plan (or Corrective Action Plan) to address any areas noted that we need to adjust in order to meet the standard.

I’m incredibly proud of our teams for the amazing work they do every day – and especially for how they came together this week to really showcase how BCC shines! Great job everyone!

– Kristian

Kristian Sekse is BCC’s Chief Operating Officer.  One of his areas of responsibility is Quality Improvement (also called Quality Assurance), which is the team responsible for maintaining BCC’s audit, compliance, survey, reporting, and risk management programs.  This team oversees BCC’s accreditations and certifications.

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BCC Celebrates Women’s History Month

It’s Women’s History Month 2021, a month-long celebration to acknowledge women’s contributions to history, culture, and society. Women’s History month started in 1978 and was born from a local celebration in Santa Rosa, CA. The first celebration of International Women’s Day took place in New York City in 1908. Thousands of women united and marched for better labor laws, working conditions, and the right to vote. Continue reading…

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Annual Meeting (May 2, 2019)

MANY THANKS TO ALL WHO JOINED US FOR A WONDERFUL EVENT!

The 2019 Annual Meeting was held on Thursday, May 2nd at the Board of Child Care’s (BCC) Baltimore campus. Also, the meeting was televised to the West Virginia Campus.

Auxiliary President Sue Everhart welcomed auxiliary guests and friends of BCC.

Laurie Anne Spagnola, MSW, President, and CEO presented on the new changes within the agency and how the Auxiliary has helped to support BCC’s Programs across the Mid-Atlantic.

Kelly Berger, LCSW-C Vice President of Special Operations provided a general overview of Positive Behavioral Intervention Supports (PBIS) PBIS – what it is, how it works and the reasons why BCC has chosen to use it as a framework for programming agency-wide – in both educational and residential programs in MD, as well as in WV and PA.

Jaclyn Blachly, M.Ed., BCBA, LBA, Director of Behavior and Related Services connected (PBIS) to the outcomes of improving the social, emotional and academic outcomes for students at Strawbridge School.

There was a special recognition service for an auxiliary member Alice Chesler. She was honored with a leaf on the Tree of Life by Centenary UMC for over 50 years of service to the Board of Child Care and the Auxiliary.

The major business of the meeting included a vote to ratify the revised Constitution which was passed by majority vote.

Breezeway Market by the Strawbridge School sold over one thousand dollars in hand crafted merchandise!

Click here to learn more about the Auxiliary

 

 

 

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Spring N’ Paint Family Engagement Event

What’s a better way to start off Spring then spending quality time with family?

We recently celebrated youth and families by sponsoring a Spring N’ Paint Event!

Check out our new artists as they paint along side their mom, dad, grandma, foster dad, sister or brother lets the healing and building memories together.

Case Manager, Rigel Moore said, “We served delicious BBQ catered by Andy Nelsons. Families laughed and smiled while they painted with her loved ones. It was great seeing our youth interact and engage with there loved ones.”

Thank you to our donors, staff, volunteers, care team, families and youth for contributing to our

purpose; enriching communities, one family at a time.

Here are some of our favorite pictures!

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Breezeway Market Recap May 2, 2019

The Breezeway Market hosted a special event Thursday, May 2nd to support BCC’s Annual Auxiliary Volunteers and Friends of BCC!

Strawbridge students have been busy hand painting pottery getting ready for the Spring.

The horticulture youth have learned how to propagate spider plants. In addition the market was stocked with freshly potted vegetables plants for your garden or outdoor pot; tomato, bell pepper, cucumber, or basil plants.

The sweetest treats are were sold at the Breezeway Market included chocolate covered pretzels and homemade cookies.

The market was also stocked with body scrubs, lotions, dreamcatchers paintings, candles and more!

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Aim for Impact.

Good afternoon, everyone –

On behalf of the Spiritual Life Team, I invite you to take a moment and center on positive actions and thoughts.

We are in the “homestretch” of our 40 Days! 

Our final theme brings us to the fourth core value of BCC: Aim for Impact.  In other words, we are striving to make a difference.

It seems appropriate to focus now on how our commitment to positive actions and positive thoughts is making an impact both in our own lives and in our community.

I invite you to look back over your calendar of these last few weeks.

  • Does any one action stand out for you?
  • Where were you most challenged?
  • How have you grown?
  • What will you do now?

Imagine with me the cumulative effort of all of our positive actions and thoughts blessed by God’s grace.

Consider these words by Hilary Weeks:

Think of the impact one positive thought can have.

Now multiply that by a million and watch the world around us change.

Thank you for your participation in the 40 Days of Positive Actions and Thoughts!

May God multiply our impact for the good of young people and their families in our communities and in our world.

With hope –

Stacey

 

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