Libby Snider assisted the family of E.A., whose minor daughter was a victim of sexual assault by her step-father. The crime was discovered when the 14-year-old was found to be pregnant, and the DNA showed it was her step-father’s child. The step-father was sentenced to life in prison, and the family was very grateful for the assistance received from CILO to help pay the electricity bill, provide Christmas gifts and a gas card. The family also received a referral for mental health counseling.
J.H. was assaulted by 2 male neighbors and was afraid to stay in her home after the men were released on bond. Ana Pacheco provided her with food from our pantry, scheduled her to apply for food stamps and gave her home listings and Palm Tran tickets.
Susan Carberry won 3+ years of retroactive benefits plus Medicare coverage for Justin, who surprisingly will be allowed to keep his salary from a part-time job at Palm Beach Habilitation.
Brandy Macaluso organized the holiday toy project for the 12th year with a wonderful outpouring of support. With donations from intern Keri Kampsen and her friends and family, many generous donations from the Jupiter Seventh-Day Adventist Church, Jacquie Shorter and the Palm Beach Post, we provided toys to 10 households and 20 children!!!
Sat. Dec. 22 staff gave turkeys, chickens, corn, eggs, sliced turkey breasts, chicken breasts, potatoes, milk and blueberries to dozens of families. (See below) Many deliveries were made, including 18 in the Treasure Coast. During December more than 100 families received food from CILO, including 300+ people.
Terry Roth helped a victim of domestic violence obtain transportation funds so she could get back and forth to her doctors. Terry also assisted the woman in filing an injunction, getting legal representation, counseling and holiday food.
Darlene Williamson advocated and won permission (and parents’ appreciation) for a special needs student who has made enough progress in social and emotional skills to move into general classes after a trial was successful.
Brianna Scerenscko assisted the family of a kindergarten student with Down Syndrome in obtaining an IEP and related services. She helped the family during the evaluation, review and IEP writing and reviewed the child’s evaluation, drafted goals, interventions, related services and options for an educational placement.
Shannon Pretorious received a call from parents of a special needs first-grader who struggles with anxiety. His parents have taken him to specialists, tried numerous therapies and medications and have carried the load when it comes to implementing supports for R.T. Yet, recently he was suspended from school. The parents were told why and for how long, but no one discussed supports at school to help R.T. Shannon asked questions and gave guidance that helped the parents understand what supports are available, how to get them in place and how the school district is required to help. And, the parents secured a support plan for their 6-year-old’s needs.
BS, 60, contacted Joe Anderson about his need for a power chair or scooter. BS has numerous health issues that keep him from leaving the house. BS expressed how much it would mean if he could just go around the neighborhood or to the corner store and have some fresh air and freedom. Joe helped BS complete an application for financial assistance from CILO to pay for a local DME supplier to fix a scooter CILO had as a donation to the Loan Closet. BS was thrilled to receive such a helpful tool. Joe also assisted BS in applying for food stamps.
Last month William Genem’s primary focus was to train two new VOCA advocates, Amber Lott and Ana Pacheco. William taught them how to file monthly reports, make referrals, obtain restraining orders and showed them the different resources for victims of crimes. He took the new advocates on initial meetings and intakes for various crime victims and to a couple of different types of hearings so they could observe and get experience.
Amber Lott received call from M.H. looking for a homeless shelter. Temperatures had dropped and living on the streets was getting a little painful for the 60-year-old. It was the end of the day when Amber called the Lewis Center and got the woman fast-tracked into a shelter.
Amber also got a call from a woman who was released from a domestic violence shelter into a home – but with literally no belongings. Amber and the staff acquired donations from friends and family plus Walmart gift cards Dan had received and bought necessities for the woman.
Tanya Meade was selected to represent the needs of crime victims with disabilities at the Battered Women’s Justice Project Conference during the last week in January. Tanya was selected due to the hard work she has put in on the Office of Violence Against Women’s grant.
Michele Sanz has been busy connecting with community organizations to arrange support groups for the new year. For example, the Boys & Girls Club of Martin County has asked CILO to hold a peer support group meeting with its youth. We also have peer support groups scheduled at the Inner Truth Project and Stuart Community High School.