International Volunteer Day (IDV) mandated by the UN General Assembly, is held each year on 5 December. It is viewed as a unique chance for volunteers and organizations to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to promote their work among their communities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), United Nations agencies, government authorities and the private sector. read more

Today is #GivingTuesday. This annual initiative has become a movement that celebrates and supports giving to charities. Please support the WellLife Network end-of-year campaign and the people who depend upon you with a donation of $10 each month - that's just 32¢ each day.

Click the link below to donate!

https://www.classy.org/give/262376/#!/donation/checkout

 

Thanks to our fans, we have won a 2019 Top-Rated Award from GreatNonprofits! Read inspiring stories about us and add your own! https://greatnonprofits.org/org/welllife-network

 

Dedicated to Building a Stronger Community

Dianne C. Didio, the incumbent Democratic nominee was re-elected for a four-year term as Mayor of Oradell. Mayor Didio defeated Republican nominee Michael L. Gardner. 

 

We are especially pleased to report on Dianne's re-election. Her law firm Levy, Stopol & Camelo, LLC represents WellLife Network and its subsidiary corporation.

 

A 31-year Oradell resident and Mayor and Councilwoman for more than a decade, Dianne Camelo Didio has always been an active civic volunteer who is committed to Oradell. Prior to serving as Mayor of Oradell and Councilwoman, Dianne was President of the Oradell Little League. Dianne is a past Board member of the Oradell Arts and Business Coalition and the Oradell Emerson Rotary Club. Dianne also serves on the Family Selection Committee for Habitat for Humanity, Bergen County.

WellLife Network is pleased to announce the appointment of Elijah Bach to its Board of Directors.

 

Mr. Bach is a husband, father, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and, most recently, an inventor. He has been a real estate investor for the past 17 years and is the founder of Bach Capital & Holdings, LLC, a private investment firm with offices in Los Angeles and New York. His company’s portfolio includes over 3.5 million square feet of commercial real estate properties in the U.S.

 

Founder of Gifted Parents

Elijah is the founder of Gifted Parents, a global network of parents who are passionate about their children’s education and future well-being, and eager to make a positive impact in the world. Gifted Parents provides equal opportunity for all parents around the world to have an access to become better educated, informed and connected for their children's education and future well-being, via live online webinars, written columns, and offline conferences. Their network of parents includes concerned members from over 150 major cities in over 40 countries.

 

Philanthropist and Athlete

Mr. Bach is passionate about shaping the next generation of leaders through international education funded through his private foundation. In the community, he performs violin and provides free instruments and lessons at his church. He also runs marathons and diligently trains at the gym.

 

Mr. Bach studied International Relations at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities as an undergraduate student, and at the University of Chicago as a graduate student. Currently, he is pursuing a joint Executive MBA degree from Columbia Business School, London Business School and University of Hong Kong Business School. He lives with his wife and children in New York City.

 

Please join WellLife Network in welcoming our newest board member and thank him for valuing our mission in helping all individuals and families reach their life’s goals and become more independent in the community.

WellLife Network on-field representatives: (L-R) Sherry Tucker, CEO; Steve Bernstein, President, S.J. Bee LLC and WellLife Board Member; Ben Blumberg, Partner, Stark Office Suites and WellLife Supporter; Michael Lamberg, Regional Sales Manager, Lamb Insurance Services and WellLife Associate Board Member; Bradley Bernstein, Associate, Goldman Sachs and WellLife Associate Board Member; and James Cusato, WellLife program resident.

 

 

Thousands cheered on September 8th as the New York Mets recognized WellLife Network with its Mets Spirit Award at CitiField in Flushing, Queens. The Mets generously donated a portion of their proceeds to support services at WellLife Network.

 

The turnout was amazing! More than 300 seats assigned to WellLife Network and its supporters were filled. WellLife was well represented by its program participants, Board of Directors, Associate Board, staff, family and friends.

 

Pregame Ceremony Honors WellLife Network

In a pregame ceremony, six WellLife representatives were honored on the home plate as Mets officials recognized WellLife Network with its Spirit Award as Nonprofit of the Game. It was an exciting experience as WellLife Network was prominently featured on the Citi Vision jumbo scoreboard. WellLife received a plaque commemorating this day and each of the six honorees accepted a ceremonial mini-bat. The six on-field WellLife Network representatives included: Sherry Tucker, CEO, WellLife; Steve Bernstein, President, S.J. Bee LLC and WellLife Board Member; Ben Blumberg, Partner, Stark Office Suites and WellLife Supporter; Michael Lamberg, Regional Sales Manager, Lamb Insurance Services and WellLife Associate Board Member; Bradley Bernstein, Associate, Goldman Sachs and WellLife Associate Board Member and James Cusato, WellLife program resident.

 

Some 300 WellLife Network supporters - board, staff, family and friends cheer on the Mets. 

 

This was a fantastic day for WellLife Network. The Mets squared off with the Phillies and WellLife Network was able to build awareness about the “good” work that it accomplishes each and every day.  

 

 

WellLife Network, one of the region’s largest nonprofits, proudly announces that it is the recipient of the 2019 Platinum GuideStar Nonprofit Profile Seal of Transparency. This award is the highest level of recognition offered by GuideStar, the world’s largest source of nonprofit information. GuideStar’s evaluation method focuses on metrics related to progress and results based on a charity’s stated mission, andawards ratings resulting from the level of transparency in reporting. Only two percent of the more than 38,000 nonprofits evaluated by GuideStar, nationwide, have achieved this Platinum rating.

 

“This award is timely as our agency enters a value-based programming model,” said Sherry Tucker, CEO of WellLife Network. “By updating our GuideStar Nonprofit Profile to earn a Platinum Seal, we can now easily share a wealth of up-to-date organizational metrics with our supporters as well as GuideStar's immense online audience, which includes donors, grant makers and our peers.​ This highly-regarded recognition is further validation of WellLife Network’s steadfast commitment to upholding operational transparency, accountability and improved performance.”

 

In addition to transparency, the organization excels in the effective use of funds. Over 87% of all expenses go directly to program services.

 

About WellLife Network

WellLife Network, is proud of its services to 25,000 New Yorkers each year and its leadership role in the development of new models of care. Our broad network of high quality, outcome-based behavioral health, disabilities, children and family, housing, addiction recovery and community education services are supported by a robust infrastructure and sophisticated technology platforms. WellLife Network will increase its scale and capabilities to thrive and grow in a changing health care environment, allowing it to compete more effectively and with sustainability in the health and human services arena.

 

America is mourning the senseless loss of innocent lives as a result of a series of horrific mass shootings. In the heated discussions that follow these tragic events, the media and politicians often focus their attention on the mentally ill as the responsible parties. This negative attention stigmatizes the mentally ill and distracts from the difficult national discussion about guns and violence. The facts about violence and the mentally ill are clear.

 

Individuals with Mental Illness Represent a Small Percentage of those Responsible for Violence in the U.S.   

The mentally ill are only responsible for a small fraction of the violence in our country. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, individuals with mental illness are responsible for only 3-5% of violent acts. In fact, 75% of all mass shootings are perpetrated by individuals without a history of mental illness. A 2018 report on mass shootings from the FBI “found that only 25% of active shooters had a mental illness”. Mood disorders, PTSD and a small percentage of psychotic disorders like schizophrenia along with co-occurring substance use disorders were identified in this group.

 

The Mentally Ill are More Likely to Be Victims than Perpetrators

Psychiatrist, Dr. Michael Stone has been studying violence in the mentally ill for many years and he estimates that the rate is only 20%. Because the mentally ill are responsible for a smaller percentage of mass shootings, mental health experts believe that although needed, additional mental health service will not change the trajectory of this violence and is not the overall solution to the problem. In other nations where the rates of mental illness are similar to the United States, mass shootings by the mentally ill are extremely rare because access to firearms in these countries is limited. Despite these data, people struggling with serious mental illness continue to be scapegoated and labeled as violent. The reality is that the mentally ill are more vulnerable than the population at large and are 10 times more likely to be the victims of a violent act.

 

In the United States, mental health issues and firearms are more firmly linked to suicide. Of the 40,000 gun deaths in 2017, over 23,000 were the results of suicides. Unfortunately, stigma continues to prevent some with mental health issues from accessing life saving treatment. 

 

We in the WellLife Network have the privilege of serving a diverse population. The high quality of care we provide throughout the agency speaks for itself. The work we do with consumers helps to combat stigma and changes lives for the better. Regardless of job title, each of us in our own way makes an important contribution to the wellness of the individuals we serve. 

 

Thank you. 

Howell Schrage, M.D.
Medical Director, WellLife Network


OMNI residents proudly display their native flags in celebration of Minority Mental Health Month.

 "I love this event," exclaimed Jose R., a resident of WellLife Network's OMNI residence. "I would like to experience events like this every other week!"

 

On July 29, WellLife Network celebrated Minority Mental Health Awareness Month at its OMNI Residence. In the human services field, the word "minority" reflects a broad range of meanings, including individuals with mental health challenges.

 

Honoring Traditions - Celebrating Differences

The residents of OMNI thought it would be an excellent opportunity to celebrate this occasion with a barbeque, honoring their cultures and traditions. Clients shared their family's country of origin and other cultural highlights of their childhood. Each attendee was encouraged to craft their birthplace flag to help them generate a feeling of pride. Residents also engaged in gross motor activities that helped them to build trust with staff and with their house peers.

 


The minefield exercise created a new camaraderie amongst OMNI residents.

Trust building activities included a water balloon toss and a blindfolded obstacle course. The "minefield" course was an exercise where one blindfolded client navigates through obstacles. Their only guidance was the sound of their partner's voice. These engaging, trust-building activities were reinforced with prizes and gifts. Clients enjoyed a healthful lunch that was graciously prepared by OMNI employees.

 

Residents' reactions said it all. Angel R. proclaimed, "Making my flag of Puerto Rico made me feel fulfilled and motivated me to compete for prizes." Maria L. declared, "I enjoyed the food served by the WellLife staff. If there were another event of this sort, I would definitely attend". 

 


(L-R) Tommy Valenti, summer intern; Crystal John, Vice President, BH Residential Services; Leighton Davis, Omni House Manager; House Residents and (far-right, back row) Anne Marie Kanable, Executive Administrative Assistant

Fostering Communication and Trust

In an environment that focuses on client-centered activities, the Minority Mental Health Celebration was a positive step in fostering communication, trust and increased interaction amongst residents. The feedback on a post-event survey indicated a very high approval rating. WellLife Network plans to establish the Minority Mental Health Awareness Month as an annual event at its residences.

 

WellLife Network offers a broad range of behavioral health residential and other services to some 25,000 each year who face mental health, developmental disabilities and addiction recovery challenges. For further information on WellLife Network's behavioral health services go to: https://www.welllifenetwork.org/what_we_do/behavioral_health

 

WellLife Network Day Habilitation programs celebrated "Father's Day 2019" with a variety of creative remembrances for the man of the day. Our Day Habilitation programs at Astoria, 117th Street and Station Road prepared door hangings, hand-made keychain gifts and beautifully decorated note cards.

 

Father's Day has a long history and began as a commemoration of the passing of 200 fathers who had died in a mining explosion in Monongah, West Virginia, on December 6, 1907. It would be described as "the worst mining disaster in American History". 

 

 

Although the Fairmont commemoration was the first known to honor fathers, it did not turn into an annual event until 1966 when President Lyndon Johnson issued a proclamation designating the third Sunday in June to honor fathers.

 

In 1972, President Richard Nixon signed a law declaring that Father’s Day would be celebrated annually on the third Sunday in June. It has been an official, permanent national holiday ever since.

 

 

WellLife Network's Day Habilitation and Community Habilitation services offer one-on-one life skills coaching to some 300 individuals with intellectual/ developmental disabilities in the community and at their homes. Together, WellLife Network counselors and individuals develop person-centered goals to create experiences that are enjoyable and educational. Participants gain better social and vocational skills while developing greater independence in the community.

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