Earth Day was a unified response to an environment in crisis — oil spills, smog, rivers so polluted they literally caught fire. 


On April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans — 10% of the U.S. population at the time — took to the streets, college campuses and hundreds of cities to protest environmental ignorance and demand a new way forward for our planet. 


The first Earth Day is credited with launching the modern environmental movement, and is now recognized as the planet’s largest civic event.


The decade that followed saw some of America’s most popular and powerful environmental legislation: updates to the Clean Air Act and the creation of the Clean Water Act, the Endangered Species Act and the establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency.


Join us in celebrating the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.


Dear Friend,


Our direct support staff at both the Office for People With Developmental Disabilities and our voluntary provider agencies are working on the front lines of this public health emergency every day, doing what they can to protect the health and well-being of the people we support. They do it with kindness, grace, professionalism and love. Their jobs are difficult and taxing on a normal day, but these most recent days are neither normal nor ordinary. What is being asked of our direct support staff now is unimaginable to most.


While we know there is no way to adequately thank our workers who are on the front lines, we can come together to let them know that we see them, we appreciate them, and we applaud them.


We’re asking you to join us by sharing our video message applauding direct support workers from our Facebook page. While we can’t be together physically to commend their dedication and resolve, we can lift their spirits by making sure they hear us. Direct Support workers are the definition of #NewYorkTough not just during this time, but all the time. Share the video to show your virtual applause using the hashtags #NewYorkTough and #ApplaudDirectSupport and don’t forget to let us know you shared it by tagging @NYSOPWDD


Thank you, 

Theodore Kastner, MD, MS


Please click here to view our video message to Direct Support Workers.



If you are dealing with the trauma of COVID-19,
WellLife Network Can Help You!

With more than 50 years of experience, our addiction recovery treatment centers are dedicated to helping you to recover. We’ll show you how to clear your mind and concentrate on getting well.

Whether you need outpatient alcohol, drug, youth rehabilitation or dual diagnosis treatment, WellLife Network’s licensed professionals have a common goal for all of our clients – Helping you get your healthy life back.

We work to understand your personal beliefs and life experiences so that we can customize a treatment plan to meet your needs within the context of your life.

Our licensed professionals understand your beliefs and life experiences and customize a treatment plan to meet your needs. Our counselors offer outpatient services and sophisticated person-centered, evidence-based treatment that inspires a lasting change.

We offer SAME DAY ACCESS Walk-in-hours

We offer customized outpatient services focusing on education and support. Services are available up to 5 days per week.
Spanish speaking staff is offered in our Smithtown location.
Our services are conveniently located in Huntington, Smithtown, Coram, and Wyandanch.

For information or to begin getting your healthy life back, call:

Image may contain: one or more people, closeup and text

We recently sent a get well video card to our favorite newscaster, Bill Ritter WABC-TV News who was recently diagnosed with a mild case of the COVID-19. He graciously thanked us for the good wishes on his news program - here was his response.

(It appears about 30 seconds in on the segment.)

Bill Ritter's Response

Dear Bill,
We are sorry to hear that you are not feeling well.

We just heard about your coming down with the virus. Everyone is praying for your speedy recovery! You are the best and are a beloved icon to us and the entire New York community.
See our team video well wishes below  - "Play Video."

Play Video


We would like to share with you the White House Coronavirus Guidelines that were released on March 17, 2020. This is an evolving flow of information and will continue to develop rapidly. As new information is forwarded to us, we will send out updates to you. We are urging our staff, their families and our partners to follow these guidelines in hopes of stemming the spread of COVID-19.

  • Listen to and follow the directions of your STATE AND LOCAL AUTHORITIES.
  • IF YOU FEEL SICK, stay home. Do not go to work. Contact your medical provider.
  • IF YOUR CHILDREN ARE SICKkeep them at home. Do not send them to school. Contact your medical provider.
  • IF SOMEONE IN YOUR HOUSEHOLD HAS TESTED POSITIVE for the keep the entire household at home. Do not go to work. Do not go to school. Contact your medical provider.
  • IF YOU ARE AN OLDER PERSON, stay home and away from other people.
  • IF YOU ARE A PERSON WITH A SERIOUS UNDERLYING HEALTH CONDITION that can put you at increased risk (for example, a condition that impairs your lung or heart function or weakens your immune system), ​stay home and away from other people. 


  • Work or  in schooling FROM HOME whenever possible.
  • IF YOU WORK IN A CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE INDUSTRY, as defined by the Department of Homeland Security, such as healthcare services and pharmaceutical and food supply, you have a special responsibility to maintain your normal work schedule. You and your employers should follow  to protect your health at work.
  • AVOID SOCIAL GATHERINGS in groups of more than 10 people.
  • Avoid eating or drinking at bars, restaurants, and food courts­
  • AVOID DISCRETIONARY TRAVEL, shopping trips, and social visits.
  • DO NOT VISIT nursing homes or retirement or long-term care facilities unless to provide critical assistance. 
  • Wash your hands, especially after touching any frequently used item or surface. 
  •  Avoid touching your face.
  • Sneeze or cough into a tissue, or the inside of your elbow.
  • Disinfect frequently used items and surfaces as much as possible.

    School operations can accelerate the spread of the Governors of states with evidence of community transmission should close schools in affected and surrounding areas. Governors should close schools in communities that are near areas of community transmission, even if those areas are in neighboring states. In addition, state and local officials should close schools where  has been identified in the population associated with the school. States and localities that close schools need to address childcare needs of critical responders, as well as the nutritional needs of children. Older people are particularly at risk from the All states should follow  and halt social visits to nursing homes and retirement and long-term care facilities. In states with evidence of community transmission, bars, restaurants, food courts, gyms, and other indoor and outdoor venues where groups of people congregate should be closed. 

Please write to me at 

Whether cooking a meal at home, rapping at our day habilitation program or exploring the community with a "day on the town," the individuals we serve   Network enjoy the freedom to define their goals and engage in meaningful activities to help them achieve them. 


Assisting Some 700 Individuals Live with Greater
Independence and Dignity


March is Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month, a time to raise awareness about the inclusion of people with developmental disabilities in all areas of community life, as well as awareness of the barriers that people with disabilities still sometimes face in connecting to the communities in which they live.


Each day, more than 700 people live with dignity and as independently as possible through family support and entitlement and eligibility programs throughout New York City.


Offering a Continuum of Residential Services

Our homes integrate care into the community and celebrate residents’ cultures and traditions. Using a person-centered approach,  Network’s housing and residential programs cover a broad array of alternatives, from 24-hour staff supervised residences to serve those with the greatest needs, to apartment living with ongoing supports for those able to live more independently in the community.


Network’s model of care focuses on assisting residents to develop daily living skills, integrate within the community where they live, receive necessary medical care, develop pre-employment skills and become more self-reliant.


Each day, more than 400 individuals live with dignity in our housing alternatives. Residents have an active role in decorating their bedrooms with motifs of their choosing. Fred enjoys being surrounded by superheroes and his favorite sports teams.


Day Habilitation Programs Help Individuals to Flourish and Grow

At our day habilitation programs, Network recognizes that every individual is unique — having different strengths, challenges, and interests. We help individuals, with intellectual/ developmental disabilities, flourish where they can learn and grow while doing something that truly interests them. Network’s Community and Day Habilitation programs are structured around those principles.


This year individuals in our day habilitation programs raised more than $21,000 to purchase food for WellLife's four food pantries to provide Thanksgiving and holiday meals for some 500 indigent individuals on Long Island.


Whether activities take place in their home or in one of our five-day programs, we help adults with I/DD, reach their greatest social, educational, life and community potential by offering them a variety of activities that stimulate their interest and growth. We offer learning experiences through theater arts, computer skills, cooking classes, basic nutrition and wellness, physical fitness, preparing for work and helping others through volunteering. We assess each individual’s strengths and needs and help them to select activities that will help them achieve their goals and track their progress in the program.


Our programs are approved for service by the New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) and the New York State Department of Health.

2019 Honorees prepare to enjoy their Employee of the Year celebration cake: (L-R) Tavia Davidson, Crystal Morgan, Maria Feleppa, Carlos Vazquez, Brittney Herbert, Nadia Sterling, and Faridulla Niazmand.


Network honored 12 loyal employees who have gone above and beyond in performing their job responsibilities at its Annual Staff Employee of the Year Luncheon on February 28, 2020. The assembled staff brings more than 54 years of program and support services – ranging from residential, day habilitation, quality assurance, case management, infrastructure services and more. This event was organized by WellLife's Human Resources Department and the Employee Engagement Committee.


Twelve Employees Who Embrace Our Mission

Each honoree brings to the workplace their passion and compassion for the people we serve. “Working at Network for many years is like working with family. Together, we work in unison to make a difference,” said Nadia Sterling, Program Director, Horizon Residence. Other award recipients include Tavia Davidson, HCBS;  Prince, Consumer Service Coordinator; Naheed Wali, Assistant Payroll Manager; Jessica Thomassen, Clinical Supervisor; Crystal Morgan; Luis Vanegas, Facilities Supervisor; Faridulla Niazmand, IT Support Engineer; Carlos Vasquez, Messenger; Mohanlal Bisram, Transportation Coordinator; Maria Feleppa, Residence Manager; Brittney Herbert, Jr. Benefits Administrator; and Nadia Sterling, Program Director, Horizon residence.


Sherry Tucker, CEO thanked each staff member for their loyalty and dedication and going the 'extra mile' to carry out WellLife's mission. "You make a difference in the lives of 2,500 individuals and families we serve each day Thank you for your special talents and passion." 

Honorees received a Certificate of Appreciation and a beautifully detailed pin recognizing their achievements. They then spoke of their journeys at Network and how their efforts made a steadfast impact on the people we serve each day.


Join us in congratulating the award winners. Write to



 The Eagle Has Landed at Network

Boy Scouts Beautify Grounds at PROS Great Neck 

In the fall of 2019, Gabriel Stewart of Troop 71 wrote Network if he could initiate an Eagle Scout Service Project for one of our programs. An Eagle Scout Service Project provides the opportunity for a scout to demonstrate leadership of others while performing a project which benefits the community.


After research and interviewing staff at, Gabriel selected our PROS program in Great Neck as the site of his project. He submitted a detailed plan to Sherry Tucker, CEO, Network and worked closely with her and Carolyn Dornstauder, Director, PROS to enhance the landscaping of the PROS facility with planters and perennial shrubs.


Gabriel's proposal went on to explain, "One requirement to become an Eagle Scout is to plan and execute a service project that benefits the community. I have participated in many local charitable projects. I have also earned the importance of giving back and recognizing the needs of others. My project is to beautify the Campus in Great Neck. This project will benefit adults with disabilities who take classes and receive services on this campus."


Gabriel and his volunteers till the soil for the planting beautification.

The Transformation Begins

On a sunny, chilly morning in February, Gabriel and his volunteer  began their beautification project. With shovels in hand, the scouts quickly dug planting holes, aerated the soil, added compost and planted the colorful perennial shrubs both in planters and around the perimeter of the campus.


The results were amazing and highlighted how neighbors and caring Scouts can truly make a difference in the lives of others. Network thanks Gabriel for his leadership, patience and entrepreneurial spirit for raising the monies to fund this project and the fellow scout members of Troop 71 who helped him to make it a reality.

PROS - A Recovery-Oriented Program

The PROS (Personalized Recovery Oriented Services) program Network is a recovery-oriented program that offers rehabilitation, support, and symptom management, along with art therapy and pre-employment training, to assist individuals with severe and persistent mental illness engage in the process of their recovery.

Volunteers Make It Happen

More than 125 people donated their time and professional and personal skills to Network last year. Volunteers and student interns make a significant and valuable contribution to our organization. If you are interested in volunteering your services, contact Joe Ferrara, Sr. Director, Development at 


For more information on PROS please contact Carolyn Dornstauder, Director, PROS.


Please join me in congratulating Jianwei Chen, Senior Controller, ReyChu Liu, Controller and Cleyvis Maldonado, Director-Contracts the Finance Department on their recent promotions at WellLife Network .

Jianwei Chen

Senior Controller, Finance


Please join me in congratulating Jianwei Chen on his promotion to Senior Controller of the Finance Department. In his new role, Jianwei will be spearheading the unification of WellLife Network’s Finance Department. He will continue to oversee the Accounting and Contracts Department and is also responsible for overseeing the Accounts Payable Department.

He has been employed by Network for sixteen years and has more than 23 years of experience in the field. He has used his knowledge and experience in accounting and finance to streamline processes at WellLife Network. The Finance Department plays a vital role in many of WellLife Network's programs

Mr. Chen received his Undergraduate Accounting Degree from Queens College at CUNY and earned a Masters Degree in Finance from St. John’s University. Prior to his employment with WellLife Network, Jianwei spent seven years working for a Banking and Security Brokerage Firm as a Senior Accountant at Wall Street and the Midtown Financial District. He will be reporting directly to Lori Alameda, Senior Vice President & CFO and will be based at the Executive Offices in Flushing.

Join us in congratulating Jianwei on his promotion.

Mr. Chen can be contacted at:


  ReyChu Liu

Controller, Finance

Please join me in also congratulating ReyChu Liu on her promotion to Controller. In her new role, Ms. Liu will be responsible for the accounting operations of the company that includes generating periodic financial reports, maintaining our accounting records, and overseeing the Accounting Department.

Rey Chu has been employed at  Network for eight years and has more than 25 years of experience in the accounting field. She has used her knowledge to ensure the accuracy of financial reports in a timely manner. The Accounting Department plays a vital role in Network's infrastructure. Reychu’s strong organizational skills, keen attention detail, combined with solid judgment, results in keeping our finances in check.

ReyChu received an undergraduate degree from CUNY Queens College and a CPA license. Prior to her employment with Peninsula Counseling Center, Ms. Liu spent two years as an Accountant. She will be reporting directly to Jianwei Chen, Senior Controller and Lori Alameda, Vice President, CFO and will be based at the Main office in Flushing.

Join us in congratulating ReyChu on her promotion.

Ms. Liu can be contacted at:


  Cleyvis Maldonado

Director of Contracts, Finance

We also congratulate Cleyvis Maldonado on her promotion to Director of Contracts. In her new role, Cleyvis compiles our Consolidated Fiscal Report and guides the Contract team to manage the agency’s $20+ million funding from New York State, New York City, and Nassau and Suffolk counties.

Ms. Maldonado has worked for WellLife Network for sixteen years. She began her career in the Accounts Payable department as a filing clerk and developed her career path in the Finance department.

Ms. Maldonado has an undergraduate degree from CUNY Hunter College. She reports directly to Jianwei Chen, Senior Controller and Lori Alameda, Vice President, CFO and will be based at the Main office in Flushing.

Join us in congratulating Cleyvis on her promotion.

She can be contacted at:


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