Wednesday, May 22, 2013


The American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR) recently recognized Heidi Friedman of The Arc of Delaware County’s Community Living Skills program in Arkville as the 2013 Direct Support Professional of the Year for New York at their Annual Conference in Washington, D.C.  “We at The Arc of Delaware County are very proud of Heidi.  With this award we celebrate her dedication, knowledge, and advocacy on behalf of people with disabilities here in Delaware County and across the nation.” said Catherine Tweedie, Director of Community Relations.


Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) provide a rich mosaic of daily support services for the many Americans with disabilities. These DSPs are integral in helping people with disabilities participate in their communities and lead full and independent lives.


“Most Americans are not aware of the critical work DSPs do every day and the essential role they play in the social and economic life of communities across the country,” said Dave Toeniskoetter, president of ANCOR. “We want to make sure DSPs like Ms. Friedman are recognized for the difficult but inspiring work they do every day.”


“DSPs are on the front lines supporting people with disabilities and ensuring those individuals are granted full inclusion in their communities,” said Renee Pietrangelo, CEO of ANCOR. “It is absolutely essential that individuals, like Heidi Friedman, are given the recognition and respect they deserve.”


ANCOR’s Direct Support Professional Recognition Award is given to those who personify the values of ANCOR’s National Advocacy Campaign, which works to ensure a well-trained and sustainable direct support workforce. Nominees are judged on the work they’ve done to build social networks, substantive community participation and advocating for the people they serve.


The Arc of Delaware County, where Heidi is employed, is a not for profit organization providing community based supports and services to over 300 children and adults with disabilities.  It is one of the largest employers in Delaware County with a workforce of nearly 200.  It is a Chapter of NYSARC, Inc., and is affiliated with The Arc of the U.S., and ANCOR. For more information about The Arc of Delaware County, visit

Read additional news about Heidi and her award as published in The Daily Star on 5/21/13 by visiting Area Life Coach Wins State Recognition

The ANCOR is a national trade association representing more
800 private providers of community living and employment supports and services to more than 400,000 individuals with disabilities. As a nonprofit organization, ANCOR successfully addresses the needs and interests of private providers before Congress and federal agencies, continually advocating for the crucial role private providers play in enhancing and supporting the lives of people with disabilities and their families. Through its National Advocacy Campaign, ANCOR seeks to obtain the resources to recruit, train and retain a sustainable direct support workforce. ANCOR provides organization, professional, leadership development and networking opportunities and services and is continually working toward partnerships and collaborations that advance our vision, mission and goals. Its prime goal is to be the indispensable leader, resource and advocate for a diverse private disability services network that ensures full citizenship and engaged community participation for people with disabilities of all ages. For more information about ANCOR, visit

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Mutually Rewarding- SUNY Delhi Students Connect with Delarc

For several years, SUNY Delhi and The Arc of Delaware County (Delarc) have partnered together to develop opportunities for both students at SUNY Delhi and people with disabilities. Friendship, learning, and experience have been the mutual rewards of this partnership.

Olivia Nicholson, a Liberal Arts student, completed a Service Learning Project at Delarc’s Community Living Skills facility in Walton. And Alexandra Rogers, an Early Childhood Education student participated in an internship at Delarc’s Carousel Children’s Services (CCS) which is located at the SUNY Delhi Campus Child Care Center (DC4).

During her Service Learning Project, Olivia developed a strong bond with Tina Osadca.  Olivia shared, “I have a wonderful time with Tina.  I am so glad I met her, she has honestly become someone that I care about and think of often. It wasn't just a relationship built because of a service learning project, it was a mutual connection between two people because I can honestly say I enjoy every moment with Tina and it is real. We talk, we smile we laugh a lot together.” “I never would have thought I would bond with someone so strongly, and I bonded with a lot of people at Delarc because everyone is all so cool in their own way.”

Olivia wrote a letter to Tina illustrated with photos and pictures to commemorate their time together and celebrate their friendship. You can view photos of her letter at our Flickr site or click here:

Alexandra Rogers has been an intern at CCS since October 2012. She shared her internship goals were to learn the basics of being a teacher in a classroom with special needs children.  She also wanted to learn more about autism and how autistic children interact with non autistic children.

She shared: “I have learned how important it is to be a positive and happy role model. I learned how to help children get out of their tantrum mode and also how to prevent tantrums. Being positive 100% of the time is a big thing I learned because your mood affects a child’s mood. Reinforcement is also a huge part of what I learned. “ “I have also learned a lot from the autistic children in the classroom. I learned that more enclosed chairs help to keep them calm and still. Also the use of a weighted spoon helps the child figure out his boundaries and put pressure on the weak bones. I learned how important it is to make them feel important. Some children came in the classroom in the morning in a bad mood. If you show them attention and love such as giving hugs it can really go a long way.” You can view photos of Alexandra working with the children at CCS on our Flickr site or click here:

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Kevin Keeps Kids Fit at Andes Central School

Kevin Allen has been given the title of “Volunteer Assistant Coach” at Andes Central School. Kevin loves sports and working with the children in K-1st grades during gym class. He independently sets up and supervises games as well as leads the exercise class. The coach says, “Kevin is just phenomenal”. When he arrives at school the children flock to him.
To view more photos of Kevin and his class visit our Flickr site by clicking here: