Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Chrissy Romatzke - Imagine! Early Intervention Rockstar

Congratulations Chrissy Romatzke, recently selected as an Imagine! Early Intervention Rockstar.

Chrissy has been a Rockstar in the department since day one. Chrissy ensures that she provides consistent and timely service coordination to all her families. She is a team player and always has a positive and calm demeanor. She’s been faced with working in several difficult situations and she takes on the challenge without hesitation. We are lucky to have such a hard worker on our team! Thanks Chrissy, you ROCK!

Monday, March 11, 2019

Meagan Little - Imagine! Longmont CORE/Labor Source Employee Spotlight

Today we’d like to recognize Imagine! employee Meagan Little, who works at our Longmont CORE/Labor Source (CLS) site.

Meagan has been going above and beyond working so hard to get the supportive technology set up through the new CLS building and helping other staff learn how to use this tech. She is always working on something, whether it's building partnerships with other companies (iPad classes) or trying to help a participant get recognition for her writing. If Meagan is available and notices that someone needs a break, she will always step in and take over, insisting that we take a break. She is an invaluable member of this team and we can't imagine what CORE/LS would be like without her dedication.

Friday, March 8, 2019

Christine McCaslin - Imagine! Excellence in Customer Service Award

Congratulations are in order for Christine McCaslin, recently selected as a recipient of the Imagine! Excellence in Customer Service Award.

Christine provides outstanding support to Imagine!’s Family Support Services Program (FSSP) as an accounting clerk. Christine generates the FSSP grant checks for our program, a task the families we serve would agree is most important. Christine's timeliness and attention to detail is vital to this process, as is the flexibility she displays, be it rescheduling check day due to holidays or re-issuing a shredded grant check at a family's request. It is truly a pleasure working with Christine!

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Imagine! Centre Stage Performance This Friday!

Imagine!’s latest Out & About Centre Stage performance is scheduled for March 8 at the Dairy Arts Center.

Learn more about Centre Stage here, and please join us next Friday for what is sure to be an amazing event.

By the way – Imagine!’s Out & About Center Stage program is selling t-shirts this year. This fundraiser will help support our mission of bringing the arts into the lives of individuals with disabilities. Click here and buy your shirt today!

Monday, March 4, 2019

Imagine! Case Management Unsung Hero - Samantha Kelly

Congratulations are in order for Samantha Kelly, recently selected as an Imagine! Case Management Unsung Hero.

Samantha has been with Imagine! for over two years, and quietly completes Case Management services with excellence. Samantha has well learned the aspects of Case Management and client care. “Even with a difficult case,” one guardian told us, “Samantha is a good Case Manager.” Samantha takes extra attention to make sure monitoring notes have great detail and communicate what is occurring in the client’s life and services. Thank you, Samantha, for your dedication to Imagine!’s mission.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Imagine! Case Management Unsung Hero - Cindy Navarrete

Congratulations are in order for Cindy Navarrete, recently selected as an Imagine! Case Management Unsung Hero.

Cindy has been a crucial asset to Imagine!’s Case Management team as one of our only adult bilingual case managers. She recently has covered many SLS bilingual cases as well as supporting her own caseload. She is quick to support clients in need and treats every case with great attention to detail. Cindy is also a part of the investigation team and often offers to take investigations even when she is busy maintaining her own workload. She takes on additional work without complaint and looks for opportunities to support the department where she can. We are lucky to have her as part of our team!

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Congratulations, Hailey

Today, we’d like to recognize Imagine! employee Hailey Schauer, who was recently nominated for the Alliance Direct Support Professional of the Year Award.

Here’s what the nomination had to say about Hailey:

Hailey is relatively new as a DSP with Imagine! but from the start she has been eager to learn. She is a natural leader. After a few months of training and learning about how Imagine! functions, Hailey stepped up as a shift leader. She helps other staff organize their shifts so that they can be as effective as possible in assisting individuals with their daily activities as well as in the pursuit of their personal goals. As Imagine! works to help implement new technology to increase their independence and quality of life, Hailey has not only been on board with trainings but has leaned in to do more. She has learned how to assist not only those whose tech plans have been assigned to her but everyone in the home where she works. She has also spent time working with every individual to determine what they need and what they want to get out of technology, and has proposed changes or new plans for how technology can be used. In addition to the work she does with the individuals she serves, Hailey also makes it a priority to help train other staff so that they can assist individuals in the use of their technology. Currently, there is an individual at her site who is learning to use a Dynavox to communicate. Sometimes it feels simpler to ask the individual a series of yes or no questions rather than set up the Dynavox. Hailey understands that the yes or no questions can lead to confusion and frustration for this individual. She makes a point to set up the Dynavox, and encourages other staff to do the same, so that the individual can have a voice. Hailey has also spent a lot of time getting to know the individuals she serves. She understands their insecurities and helps them find the confidence to be their own self-advocates. Hailey also does her best to help individuals get into the community, engaging in fun activities. Sometimes she finds activities for the entire site to attend, like a community dance, and other times she focuses on specific individual desires like going to the grocery store to buy ingredients to bake cookies. The individuals who work with Hailey are well served and supported by her. 

The winner of the Alliance Award will be announced February 27 at Alliance's Annual I/DD Awareness Day at the Colorado State Capitol.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Congratulations, Brett

Today, we’d like to recognize Imagine! employee Brett Osborn, who was recently nominated for the Alliance Direct Support Professional of the Year Award.

Here’s what the nomination had to say about Brett:

Brett has a heart full of care and compassion for all of the individuals with whom she works. She has made it a personal goal to get to know them well so she can be the best support and advocate possible. The results of this goal are plain to see. One of the residents suffers from depression, and she finds new and fulfilling ways to help this person get out of the house and into the community. She helped the individual join a church and build relationships with the people there, as well as taking her on fun outings like to the nail salon. The community outings and involvement help with the depressive symptoms and the individual has enjoyed trying new things as well as having fun planning and researching other possibilities. In another example, Brett is the primary support for one individual and she has supported her in ways that have truly been transformative. Brett supported this individual to express herself and her emotions in a healthy way. The individual is not able to communicate verbally very easily but now she is painting and playing music. Those activities are entertaining and enjoyable but also help the individual express her feelings to those around her in a tangible way. Brett is a tireless advocate and support for this individual. She helps this person navigate complicated health discussions with her family, guardian, nurse, and site supervisor. Brett is always tuned into what the individual is feeling and makes sure that her voice is heard. Brett spends a lot of her time, on and off the clock, helping people when they’re in the hospital. She makes sure the hospital staff understands how to communicate with the individuals she serves and also makes a point to visit them and bring them personal items that will make them feel more at ease. If ever there is a medical emergency at the home and Brett is on shift, you can expect to see her taking the lead. She keeps a cool head in crisis and makes sure that everyone is safe and informed. Brett’s focus on each individual and their unique needs and desires makes her stand out among the rest of her colleagues.

The winner of the Alliance Award will be announced February 27 at Alliance's Annual I/DD Awareness Day at the Colorado State Capitol.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Imagine! Leadership Development Group Update

Imagine!'s 2018-19 Leadership Development Group. Left to right: Paula McCormick, Emily Walsh, Victoria Thorne, Gabbie Norton, and Jessie Michaud

Imagine!'s Leadership Development Group has selected "Fostering a Collaborative Culture" as our project for the year. Recent changes in the leadership of Imagine! service departments have identified a new vision that focuses on developing a more collaborative culture to improve service delivery and employee experience. With that goal in mind we are looking at what strategies Imagine! leadership could potentially implement to foster a stronger culture of information sharing and collaboration. 

Why did we chose this project? 
We eventually realized that we had begun collaborating with each other by sharing information learning about the departments that we each work in. we were excited at the prospect of getting to look more closely at how the idea of collaboration could best serve Imagine! as a whole. We also feel that it can be hard to communicate with other departments at times and not being to collaborate as well makes the job harder.

What does collaboration mean to us?

  • Being able to reach out to members of different departments to gather information and knowledge in order to tackle problems (why reinvent the wheel you don’t have to?). 
  • Being able to utilize the resources in other departments and the knowledge that another employee might have of best practices so that we can deliver the best customer service.
  • Gaining new information about other departments so that we can become better ambassadors of Imagine! 
  • Making new connections with people who you don’t work with every day in order to better understand what goes on day to day for your coworkers. 
We hope that in the end we will have better communication with each other and a greater understanding of Imagine! as a whole and what goes on in the different departments. When was the last time you chatted with someone who doesn’t work in your department? The LDG group challenges all of you to give a try. You never know what you might learn!

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Love Actually

“When I was in high school, there seemed to be a stigma revolving around students with
developmental disabilities and being in romantic relationships,” said Out & About Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) Brittany Weissman. “I remember typical students would poke fun at students with disabilities who had crushes on others, and in turn, made them feel bad. So, in a way, they are informed by their influencers that they shouldn’t have feelings like that. But they should, and they do.”

Since 2017, Imagine!’s Out & About adult services have facilitated an activity called Love Actually, a practical, social experience for participants who want to learn more about relationships of all kinds. “This is a space for adults with developmental disabilities to learn about not only how to love themselves, but how to build lasting relationships with others,” commented Out & About CTRS Bridget Heddens.

“We saw there was a need for this type of activity,” said Out & About Program Manager Elena Ciaravino. “The theme of ‘navigating relationships’ came up a lot when talking with the individuals who use our services, and we pride ourselves on offering activities that our participants want.”

According to Board Certified Behavior Analyst Ryan Bable: “Being loved and having these
relationships is a hallmark of humanity, and one that should not be excluded from certain groups of people! It is all about teaching the best ways to approach this so that those relationships can actually occur.”

Out & About’s class tackles this subject head on, empowering participants with skills and experiences to independently build relationships. Here are a few examples of lessons taught during Love Actually:

Social Media Safety and Privacy – participants learned privacy settings and etiquette on Facebook and other social media sites in order to reduce vulnerability, and practiced how to respond to strangers who message them.

Gender – A representative from Out Boulder visited to speak about the LGBTQ community and how love looks different for each and every one of us.

Online Dating – Participants logged on to Special Bridge, an online social community for people with mental and physical disabilities. They made profiles and practiced navigating through the site.

Practice Dating – Participants went on practice dinner dates with their peers, practicing eye contact, conversation starters, and etiquette.

Role Playing – Participants acted out scenarios to help them learn about healthy and unhealthy relationships.

Every class allows a space for open sharing, asking questions, and expressing feelings about relationships and love. Self-love has been an emphasized theme as well, giving all participants a moment to express themselves without the influence of others. “In order to love someone else, you have to learn how to love yourself,” said Bridget. Participants are encouraged to look inward and discover what they love about themselves, and what they can contribute to a relationship.

“If we don’t have the necessary tools to build lasting relationships, life can feel very lonely and isolating,” said Bridget. “With a class like Love Actually, the participants are allowed to ask questions and practice these skills in a safe environment, free from judgment.”

Out & About staff members have noticed an increase in open sharing and inquiry, not just in the Love Actually class, but in other classes as well. More participants now feel comfortable with voicing their feelings about love and relationships, and have realized it’s okay to talk about it.

“The class can seem tricky and tough to teach,” said Bridget. “But once everyone in the room has an open mind, discussions and lessons become simple, because at the end of the day, we all just want to be loved.”

Monday, February 11, 2019

The Impact Of Imagine! Donors

Imagine! donors make such a difference in our efforts to create a world of opportunity for all abilities. The short video below shows just a few ways donors impacted our work last year.


Thursday, February 7, 2019

Jeff Johnson - Imagine! Excellence in Customer Service Award Recipient

Congratulations are in order for Jeff Johnson, recently honored as an Imagine! Excellence in Customer Service Award Recipient.

Imagine!’s Case Management department could not function in the capacity it does, nor could it maintain its high-level of customer service, without the expertise and dedication of Jeff Johnson. A prime example of Jeff’s contributions happened this past fall when a now-enrolled individual was transitioning from the foster care system into Imagine! managed services. Due to the complex system of county jurisdictions involved in this individual’s case, there was confusion as to which county was responsible for leading the process. Enter Jeff. Jeff made countless calls, sent numerous emails, and created new contacts in order to meet this client’s needs. After a massive amount of heavy lifting on Jeff’s part, including solving a catch-22 with Social Security, the counties involved reconciled the case and this individual was able to get his services started. He now has a loving host family and new opportunities as he transitions into adulthood. Great work, Jeff!

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Shop At Lucky's And Support Imagine!

Today, we’d like to offer a big shout out to the South Boulder Lucky’s Market. Thanks to many of you voting online, Imagine! was selected as one of this quarter’s (February 3-May 25) Lucky’s Bags For Change partners!

For our readers who live in the area, we’d sure appreciate it if you were to make a shopping trip or two to Lucky’s (located at 695 S Broadway St. in Boulder) over the next couple of months so you can participate in this fun and environmentally friendly way to support our mission of creating a world of opportunity for all abilities.

Here’s how it works: when shoppers bring in their reusable bags, they can choose to receive $.10 back per bag credit or donate that amount to one of the three Bags For Change partners, including Imagine!. Even better: when a shopper donates, Lucky’s Market will match the donation and double the giving to the nonprofits! Make sure you bring in your reusable bag so you can start dropping dimes to support the three partners.

Thanks Lucky’s for your demonstrated commitment to your community, and thanks in advance to all of you who help out by shopping at Lucky’s South Boulder!

Monday, February 4, 2019

Imagine! Partners with Growing Up Boulder

GUB (Growing Up Boulder) is an initiative that began in spring of 2009. Their mission is to empower Boulder's young people with opportunities for inclusion, influence, and deliberation on local issues that affect their lives. Their current project is giving local youth the opportunity to create their version of a child friendly city map of Boulder.

Imagine!'s Out & About After School Program, which serves children and teens with developmental disabilities, was contacted by GUB to help with creating the Boulder child-friendly city map. GUB hosted Out & About at the Boulder Public Library one afternoon and held a workshop to brainstorm ideas.

“They shared their favorite places around Boulder, including the Humane Society, special restaurants, and hiking trails,” said GUB Program Director Mara Mintzer. “Our engagement with Out & About was enriching to us as educators, and the youth had fabulous ideas!"

GUB aims to reach a wide range of 0-10 year olds in Boulder for the child-friendly city mapping project; they are collaborating with preschools, elementary schools, homes, and after school programs. The main values that guide this project are inclusion, diversity, community engagement, collaboration, and celebration!

"Our goal is to make sure all young people's voices are shared in our work,” said Mara. “Because young people with disabilities are less likely to have their voices heard than majority groups, we seek them out to participate in our programs."

“I’m excited for our participants to see the map and what they contributed,” said Out & About Therapeutic Specialist Maggie Clinton. “It’s awesome they had a voice in a project that will have an impact on the greater community.”

Since Out & About is a community-based program, they plan to incorporate the new maps into their
activities and planning. Instructors and participants can use them as resources to decide where to go next when there is down time, and instructors will also use the map as a tool to teach participants how to access their community.

The city map project is still in the works and will be available later this year. Click here to learn more about GUB. In November 2017, Mara presented a TEDx Talk in Denver, “We let kids design a city -- here’s what happened.” Click here to watch.

Thank you GUB for this awesome partnership and we look forward to working with you again!

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Imagine! Case Management Unsung Hero - Jonah Moss

Congrats to Jonah Moss, recently selected as an Imagine! Case Management Unsung Hero.

Jonah recently joined the Case Management department and has hit the ground running. Last month we learned through a State audit that thousands of case notes did not fully upload from our data system into theirs. Jonah jumped right in to offer his expertise and willingness to create a program with a sorting algorithm that allowed us to compare notes from both data systems. In doing so, we were able to sort out those notes that were incomplete and needed reentry into the State system. This was a significant contribution that has allowed Imagine! Case Management to save a great deal of money.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Cassie Finds A Home

After 13 years of looking for a permanent home, "Cassie," a life-size horse sculpture, found a home on Imagine! property. Alonzo Clemons, who accepts services from Imagine!, created Cassie back in 2005. Earlier this year, the city of Lafayette, Colorado purchased the sculpture and chose the Imagine! administration building to display this wonderful art. A dedication ceremony featuring Alonzo and others close to this project will take place later this spring. Come to 1400 Dixon Ave in Lafayette to see the masterpiece up close and personal!

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Imagine! Leadership Development Group Update

Imagine!'s 2018-19 Leadership Development Group. Left to right: Paula McCormick, Emily Walsh, Victoria Thorne, Gabbie Norton, and Jessie Michaud

Every year, Imagine!’s Leadership Development Group (LDG) performs a case study for Imagine!. This year’s case study is “Fostering a Collaborative Culture,” and the LDG will present it to the Imagine! Board of Directors in May. 

Paula: This case study is really exciting for me because I have found that just having the diversity of different services in the LDG has given me a whole new understanding of what happens in other areas within Imagine!. I feel this project will give us a chance to work towards everyone having a good idea of what goes on in each area as well as allowing for knowledge sharing and maybe identification of some best practices. For example, I recently heard about a new ARC opening in Longmont. Since Jessie is looking for employment opportunities for CORE/Labor Source, I was able to share that with her. If I was not familiar with Jessie and Imagine!’s Supported Employment program, we would not have made that connection. This is just one of many examples that show how important our case study topic is.

Victoria: Choosing our case study, surprisingly, took more time than I expected because we made an effort to pull each potential case study apart and deliberate. Picking the case study on how we can help foster a collaborative culture at Imagine! is exciting for two reasons. First, I am eager to meet our goal for this project: to create strategies that help Imagine!’s leadership foster a stronger culture of information sharing and collaboration. Second, I am looking forward to reaching out and working with other employees in the company who will help us gain insight and drive our project’s goals. Every project needs the passion and perseverance of its participants to succeed. I hope that this case study teaches me more about what effective communication, collaboration, and change means to each department at Imagine!.

Jessie: To be honest, at first I wasn’t sold on “collaboration” as our case study because it seemed vague. Collaboration can mean many things and can be enacted across the company in many different ways. But as we slowly narrowed down the list, this topic remained an option. As I listened to others in the group advocate for this topic, I began to see the vagueness as a benefit. Since being in LDG, I have learned so much about different departments: what they do, who they support, and how we all work in different ways to achieve the same mission. Collaboration can mean many different things across Imagine! and this “vagueness” gives us an opportunity to explore options that we think could truly be beneficial for all of us. While many of us do vastly different things in our own day-to-day, we ultimately have the same goal of creating a world of opportunity for all abilities and the more ways we can find to collaborate with each other, the better support we can offer those we serve. 

Gabbie: As busy as everyone tends to be, it is very easy to become so focused on our departments without thinking about how our jobs relate to others in our agency. Participating in LDG has altered this perspective for me. I have realized that my department, while important, is a small portion of what makes Imagine! function and impact the community so effectively. Other departments are doing amazing things, most of which I was unaware of until I got to know my fellow LDG members from various departments. I have learned so much from my group and want others in our agency to experience the same opportunities. As we head into this case study, I am excited to figure out a way for everyone to have opportunities to engage with other departments and expand their knowledge of our agency.

Emily: While we tackle this case study, I am looking forward to some thought provoking discussions among the group. One of the reasons we chose this topic is that we realized every time the LDG meets, we naturally have been fostering a culture of collaboration. Since we represent different areas of Imagine!, we each bring a unique set of ideas to the table. This nucleus of support and collaboration we have in the LDG is something Imagine! as a whole could benefit from. I am excited to bring our ideas together and see what we can come up with as a group to best serve Imagine! and our mission.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Imagine! Leadership Development Group Update

Today, members of Imagine!’s Leadership Development Group (LDG) talk about their experiences in the first few months of the program.

Imagine!'s 2018-19 Leadership Development Group. Left to right: Paula McCormick, Emily Walsh, Victoria Thorne, Gabbie Norton, and Jessie Michaud

Gabbie: Participating in LDG for the past two months has been an eye opening and challenging experience for me, in all of the right ways. Soon after I joined LDG, my position switched to a supervisor role, so everything that I am learning has been immediately applicable and beneficial to my new job. Most recently, we read the book "Lean In" and attended a five week course on leadership. Both the book and the class helped me realize that I have a tendency to back away from challenges when I feel uncomfortable or as though I do not have enough to contribute. I am learning how important it is to share thoughts, feedback, and ideas with others, as it is the only way we grow personally and professionally together. I am so thankful to have these opportunities during such an ideal time in my career!

Jessie: Work has been an adventure these past few months. Currently CORE/Labor Source (CLS) is going through a restructure in which I am creating and stepping into a new role, and the Longmont site moved to a new location (we are still trying to settle into the new space). Work has been busier for me than ever before. Adding the additional work of LDG can seem daunting at times; additional meetings, books to read, a 5-week Leadership class series in Denver, conferences, and then writing about it all to share with you. And yet it is also helping to guide me through all the change and the unknown. Our leadership course has helped drive my ideas as I take on new responsibilities. It has also forced me to practice my communication skills and focus on what kind of leader I want to become. Even though it has been additional work each week, it is helping me move forward with clearer intention and has provided me with new friends from other departments who can help me broaden my view as I try new things.

Victoria: LDG has helped me become more aware of and strengthened my leadership and communication abilities. It has created a positive impact on my work and encourages me to think about the impact I have at Imagine!. I have learned to tap deeper into active listening, reflection, and collaboration to better achieve tasks, goals, and personal growth. "Lean In" has had a substantial impact on my professional growth and outlook as a future leader. Most notably is the challenge of how to be successful in the workplace as a woman. I have discovered that I can create barriers for myself that impede my success. The book and my mentors have inspired me to take hold of those fears and challenge them to create my own success. I am beginning to realize that being a leader is more than just accomplishing tasks and goals. Good leaders juggle a vast amount of responsibilities while encouraging themselves and their team to grow.

Paula: I have found being a part if the LDG challenging in the sense of learning new things, time commitments/management, and balancing my job responsibilities with LDG duties. It has presented me with a chance to learn new skills and enhance ones I already had. The Leadership Series of classes that we have been attending has provided me with those skills and enhancements. I count myself fortunate, I have several individuals helping support my involvement in this process. If it were not for the support of Santa Fe’s staff, my peers, my supervisor, my mentors and my fellow LDG’ers, I truly do not feel that I would be able to do this. Thank you all for your support, it is much appreciated.

Emily: LDG has had a significant impact on me. Most notably with my time management. With the added responsibility of LDG I have had to improve my ability to delegate tasks and use my time more wisely. One of the things that we have gotten to do is complete the Leadership Series of classes. While this added a big time commitment for the last 5 weeks it also really helped me see areas of leadership that I would like to improve upon. Another impact on me has been the other LDG members. Because we all come from different parts of the company I am able to gain greater insight as to what is happening at different sites and I am able to share what challenges my team is facing. I have also gained a sounding board of four great women to share ideas, insight and support which has been really beneficial for me.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Imagine! Employees Pass RBT Exam

Tyler Buchholz
Imagine! employees Rachel Bowles and Tyler Buchholz recently passed their Registered Behavior
Technician (RBT) exams. Their current roles as Behavioral Line Staff at Imagine!'s adult day program in Longmont will benefit greatly from this extra training and education, providing thoughtful support to their coworkers and the individuals in the program.

“It’s been cool for both of us to have someone to go through this with,” commented Rachel on having Tyler as a test buddy. They completed the 85 question exam with a 90 minute time limit at a testing center in Broomfield.

Rachel Bowles
The RBT credential is a stepping stone toward being a BCBA (Board Certified Behavior Analyst), all within the ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) field. Rachel and Tyler are now registered in a national database where their contact info is listed for networking purposes.

Dr. Jeff Kupfer, a licensed psychologist and consultant for Imagine!, and Jonny Brennan, BCBA at Imagine!, both work closely with Rachel and Tyler. “They have been super helpful throughout this whole thing,” said Rachel. In March, Rachel and Tyler will present at a conference titled Four Corners ABA in Santa Fe, NM, thanks to a connection through Dr. Kupfer.

“It’s rewarding to have coworkers approach us for advice and having trust in us,” said Rachel. “Which is something I now feel comfortable responding to after completing the exam.” Congrats to Rachel and Tyler for this accomplishment! The Imagine! community is stronger for Rachel and Tyler’s brand-new credentials, benefiting from their education and experience.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Vote Imagine! For Lucky’s Market South Boulder Bags for Change!

Imagine! has been nominated for Lucky’s Market South Boulder Quarter 1 Bags for Change partnership, and you can help by voting for us! 

Here’s how it works: voting runs from January 7th through January 14th. The three organizations with the most votes at the end of the voting period will receive Lucky’s Bags for Change donations for the upcoming quarter.

The vote will exist in the form of a SurveyMonkey survey. Be sure to choose "South Boulder" for the market you frequent when prompted.

Here is the link to vote!

During the voting period, please feel free to share the link above on your social media channels as much as you’d like. Increased visibility and awareness of the post is incredibly helpful in gathering votes, which in turn will help us create a world of opportunity for all abilities.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Emma Goodenow - Imagine! Excellence in Customer Service Award Recipient

Congratulations are in order for Emma Goodenow, recently selected as an Imagine! Excellence in Customer Service Award recipient.

Emma gives her heart and soul to her job. When we talk about being an ambassador for Imagine!, Emma shines. Even more importantly, she is an ambassador for each and every individual we provide services to. They always come first for her.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Get To Know This Year’s Imagine! Leadership Development Group

Today, members of Imagine!’s Leadership Development Group introduce themselves.

Imagine!'s 2018-19 Leadership Development Group. Left to right: Paula McCormick, Emily Walsh, Victoria Thorne, Gabbie Norton, and Jessie Michaud

Paula McCormick: I started with Innovations four years ago as a Primary Residential Counselor, then as Assistance Residential Site Supervisor, and now as Site Supervisor at Santa Fe. Day one, I knew this was for me. I wanted to make things better for those we serve. I fell naturally into a leadership role in my positions. I love being here for the consumers. I value the relationships and trust we have. Santa Fe’s staff provides structure and stability to create a word of opportunity for people of all abilities. I wanted to be part of LDG to learn more about Innovations and Imagine!. I want to increase my abilities. To understand why we do things the way we do them. I strive to make things better for the individuals we serve and for Santa Fe’s Staff. I feel LDG will provide me with added knowledge and skills to do just that.

Victoria Thorne: Being part of Imagine! since 2014 has been a wonderful experience for me both professionally and personally. When I became part of the Imagine! team, I realized that my personal beliefs about all individuals really aligned with the mission, values and principles that Imagine! holds. My current position within the company has allowed me to support families and teams by creating fulfilling opportunities for growth. Being selected for the LDG came as a bit of a surprise, but I have discovered I have great mentors and a broader view of what we do here at Imagine! after getting to know the group. The LDG curriculum is straightforward and introspective which is what makes it challenging and at the same time rewarding. I am looking forward to incorporating all the mentoring and learnings of leadership into my professional development.

Jessie Michaud: I have worked for Imagine! in CORE/Labor Source for 5.5 years. I started as a Direct Support Professional, moved into the lead position, moved into the coordinator position, and am now the Supported Employment Program Supervisor. I work for Imagine! because it is important to me to be able to participate in making our community accessible for all. Being in Longmont for the last five and a half years has been wonderful, but at times it has been a little isolating from the greater Imagine! community as a whole. I joined LDG for opportunities to meet and work with more people across Imagine!, to learn about other departments and the services Imagine! offers, and to get support around establishing this new role.

Gabbie Norton: I am a Children's Case Management Supervisor here at Imagine!. When I first heard about Imagine!, I had no idea what a case manager did, let alone all of the impactful services and opportunities out there for our clients. As I have grown in my role at Imagine!, I have learned that there is still so much that I do not know, which is a valuable lesson. I have a desire to discover more so that I can do my job as well as possible. Leadership Development Group could not be a better opportunity to achieve this growth. My favorite part of working at Imagine! is being able to effectively help families access resources & services to ensure that they receive the necessary services. I am here because I believe in the mission that Imagine! works toward daily as an organization and look forward to learning more about that as I participate in LDG!

Emily Walsh: I have worked at Imagine! for four years. I started as a service coordinator in Early Intervention, then moved into the supervisor role in EI and am now the EI provider program manager and oversee the Dayspring department. I love working at Imagine because I think that work that we do is important to the bigger picture of our community. There are so many opportunities for me to engage with others about things that I am passionate about. One of the most important things to me about working at Imagine! is the relationships that I have built with my coworkers. Having a group of people who also believe in the mission and are supportive of one and other is vital to the work that I do. I am excited to join LDG to learn more about other programs at Imagine! and engage with others with different people and their perspectives.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Imagine! - The Year In Review

Today seems like a perfect day to recap the last year at Imagine!.

About The People We Served 

Click on the image to make it larger

How We Served Our Community

In the past year,

Imagine!’s Care Coordination team … 

Provided information and referral to 2,346 families providing at-home care for an individual with intellectual disabilities.

Distributed $1,144,502 to help 459 families with the extraordinary costs of raising a child with autism or other special needs.

Distributed $143,359 in emergency funds to 104 individuals and families facing crisis situations requiring immediate financial intervention.

Imagine!’s Early Intervention Team …

Coordinated services for 1,126 babies and toddlers with developmental delays or disabilities. 

Helped 333 babies and toddlers with developmental delays improve their communication, motor, and/or social skills through early intervention therapies.

Hosted 138 community-based activities designed for children to meet their goals in a fun and playful environment.

Imagine!’s School Age Services

Assisted 80 children with developmental disabilities in developing life-long skills through summer camp, after school, and community activities.

Imagine!’s Adult Services … 

Supported 496 adults with intellectual disabilities through enriching and therapeutic programs and classes.

Imagine!’s Employment Services

Provided job training and placement for 144 adults with intellectual disabilities.

Imagine!’s Residential Services

Provided a variety of residential options for 165 adults with intellectual disabilities.

Imagine! also … 

Provided mental health services and behavioral health services to 365 individuals with intellectual disability diagnoses.

Supported 232 family recruited employees.

How Our Community Served Imagine!

In the past year,

412 Imagine! volunteers served 12,311 hours of their time.

At last year’s Imagine! Celebration, 499 guests raised $430,000 to help Imagine! meet its mission of creating a world of opportunity for all abilities.

Click here to see a list of all Imagine! donors from last year.

Wow! That was a pretty impressive year. But don't worry, we aren’t resting on our laurels – we’re already working to make 2019 even better!