Self-Advocacy Group Graduates
Ten Week Class Comes to a Successful End
On Tuesday night, May 28th, eight of our adults graduated from a self-advocacy program that was conducted by Cindy Gilchriste, Upper Hudson Valley Regional Self-Advocates of New York Coordinator.
The requirements of graduation included attending a 10 week class and completing a self-advocacy project. The projects were presented at the Graduation ceremony and included an advocacy story board, a poem, a letter that was written to the governor related to budget cuts, a rap song, a dedication to a man's nephew and a man's picture essay of his dream. The presentations were extremely moving and represented how much the self-advocates had learned and accomplished during the 10 week class.
When Ms. Gilchriste presented the certificates, she was so emotionally overwhelmed she briefly could not speak. When she spoke, she expressed how proud she was of the graduates and how impressed she was with Devereux's effort to create this opportunity for the adults we serve.
This opportunity was the vision of Krista Scibelli, Director of Community Services, who is always looking to create opportunities for the adults we serve to be as independent and community integrated as possible. This program was made possible because Sandy Hay, Director of Dayhab, volunteers her time each week to run the Devereux Community Services Self-Advocacy Program. Sandy worked side by side with Ms. Gilchriste to make this class a reality. The only face prouder than that of the self-advocates on Tuesday night was Sandy's!
It was a joyous evening and a wonderful celebration. Please join me in thanking Krista and Sandy for providing this experience for the adults in our care and in congratulating WR, AM, MA, CL, BV, SL, JP and RB on their amazing accomplishment.