Teri Leiker (Photo courtesy of Lexi Knutson)

Reflecting on the Legacy of Teri Leiker

As we continue to mourn the lives lost in the tragic Boulder shooting, we reflect on the impact that Teri Leiker had on her community.

Teri Leiker worked at the King Sooper’s in Boulder for over 30 years. When she wasn’t busy at work, serving the community, her family reports that

Teri was the most joyful person to be around. Everyone loved her and she loved them back. Teri was a very empathetic individual that cared deeply for those around her and cared about those affected by past floods and wildfires. Teri, like so many of us, was a multifaceted person with her own individual needs and wants and hopes and dreams. With help from Imagine, Boulder County CCB, Teri was able to live on her own at age 21. She maintained her independence and lived a full of dignity and pride. From starting her first and only job at King Sooper’s in 1989 to becoming a homeowner, Teri found her place in the world, becoming a steadfast staple of her local community.

To say that this loss has been significant and absolutely heartbreaking for the IDD community and those that knew her would be an understatement. As the last few weeks have passed, we’ve heard stories in the field relaying what a tremendous individual Teri was. We send our most heartfelt thoughts and well-wishes to Teri’s family and the IDD community in Boulder, including those that knew her at Imagine. We pray that the memories of her life provide comfort and solace to those that loved her.

These photos posted below were from a recent memorial service. As you can see, Teri’s impact on the community remains unmatched and she will be sorely missed.

For more information, you can read about Teri here: https://www.9news.com/…/73-012b4313-ecd7-46d8-a988…

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Host Home Provider of the Month

Please join us in congratulating our recent Host Home Providers of the Month, Berthy Pondaag!

The following write-up was produced by the Denver Metro Three Team: 

Denver Metro 3 (Team Hypernova) would like to nominate Berthy Pondaag and co-provider Jacqueline Lompolium for the HHP of the month award!  They have continued to provide consistent and exemplary care to two of our most vulnerable individuals.  Their patience while the team worked on methods to ensure the health and safety of one of their individuals to provide them with the least restrictive, most inclusive environment is admirable.

Time and time again, they’ve shown their ability to go above and beyond to ensure documentation is completed accurately and in a timely manner, come up with solutions to ensure goals are being worked on and that the services being provided are carried out in the proper setting.  Berthy and Jacqueline have worked hard to make sure their individuals live their best lives while still following all protocols and doctor’s orders. The last few months have not been easy but one thing is for certain, their quality of care for their individuals has never wavered. We want to thank you both for the work you do and let you know we appreciate you!  

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Host Home Provider of the Month

Please join us in congratulating our recent Host Home Providers of the Month, Linda and Scotty Cummins!

The following write-up was produced by Team SoCo: We would like to recognize Linda and Scotty Cummins as Support, Inc’s Host Home Provider of the Month. Linda and Scotty are dream providers! They routinely and regularly keep the daily documentation current for their individuals in service, as well as always keeping their own compliance requirements up to date. However, paperwork is not their only superpower! They also have fabulous, healthy relationships with the gentlemen in their care. Their folks love that they are part of the family, and all enjoy camping, fishing, hiking, and generally being in the outdoors. Linda and Scotty encourage their independence and help them to speak up for themselves.

Recently, Scotty and Linda were approached to take a new gentleman into their home. He preferred to have a bedroom on the same floor as everyone else, so Scotty and Linda took on the effort and expense of hiring contractors to transform their open-sided office into a new private bedroom. Talk about going the extra mile! While the remodeling was taking place, Linda and Scotty had Zoom visits with him and his mother so that everyone felt more comfortable about the impending move. The atmosphere of their home is friendly and happy, and obvious to all who visit (virtually or in person!) Please join the Colorado Springs team in congratulating this wonderful couple on their well-deserved recognition!

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Events on the Calendar

A friendly reminder for those looking for our weekly events- This information has transitioned to the calendar on our website.

The calendar includes information for our Day Program Events, LIFE Events and BACPAC events. To learn more information, simply click on the date and click on the event for further details.

Many of our events are hosted online due to COVID-19. To join, select the event on the calendar and be sure to download Zoom ahead of time.

If you have any further questions regarding our events or how to use Zoom, please contact Cathy at Cathy.Kellogg@supportinc.com and she will point you in the right direction.

Moving and Grooving

Moving and Grooving: A Glimpse into our Exercise Group

As a member of the Intake Team, I’ve often wondered how it is to join the groups I frequently promote. From our LIFE Club to Moving and Grooving and beyond, we offer quite the lineup of activities for people to join online. Our Day Program offers the opportunity to participate in person with peers in a safe environment. But for those that choose to stay home, I would highly recommend Moving and Grooving as a means for light and fun exercise.

To start, you’ll want to wear some comfortable clothing and shoes. I was honestly a little too excited for this group and got ready an hour early. Meredith and Ashley will normally start with stretches and then we move on to the festivities!

I had been meaning to join this group for quite some time. So, to login for this Heartthrob Dance Party was pretty good timing if you ask me. From N’SYNC and Backstreet Boys to Britney Spears and One Direction, the majority of the requests were 90’s favorites. As a true millennial at heart, this made me very happy.

Ready to move and groove in my new workout headband!

My favorite part of this group was just how casual it is. I must’ve had this preconceived notion that the meetings were structured with “group fitness expectations” such as everyone curling their arms together or involving some sort of synchronized group moves. This was not the case. Participants are literally encouraged to “move and groove”, whether that be head-bopping, foot-tapping or full-blown dancing with great enthusiasm. I also loved how comfortable the group felt for people joining it. Everyone was accepting of each other’s dancing, and no one seemed to care how someone else was choosing to move and groove.

Lastly, our clinicians leading the effort are a cut above the rest. Meredith and Ashley are both thoughtful and considerate when guiding these group activities. For instance, we have Moving and Grooving happening again today. The group focuses on strength this week and takes a look at inner and outer strength, so not just the physical elements. The way our Clinicians focus on the whole person, including the emotional needs of our individuals, remains a cutting-edge approach to care. In addition, these activities allow the people we serve the chance to connect with other individuals in the program for socialization opportunities. With deliberate planning and creative ideas, Meredith and Ashley go above and beyond for every session they host. Every theme they develop for Moving and Grooving is safe, fun and ultimately, engaging.

In short, I had a blast joining Moving and Grooving last week! I highly recommend that those on the fence give it a try. Moving and Grooving convenes every Wednesday from 12:15-1:00 p.m. For more information, please visit our calendar at www.Supportinc.com. You will also find other groups happening online that you’re welcome to join, as well.

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Host Home Provider of the Month

Please join us in congratulating our recent Host Home Provider of the Month, Shaunti Kelley!!!

The following write-up was produced by RPC Sonny Everett:

“We are happy to recognize Shaunti Kelley as HHP of the month. From the start of her HHP role with Support, Inc. she has demonstrated so much love and care for her consumer. Shaunti has gone above and beyond to make Heather’s days creative and fun with all the arts and crafts, baking, playing games, community outings, keeping close communication with Heather’s family, but most importantly, just making Heather happy. We are very lucky to have Shaunti be a part of our Support team. Thank you Shaunti for all that you do!”

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Support, Inc. Welcomes Two New Employees

Please join us in welcoming two employees to the organization. First, we have Faith Wilkins who joined the agency in January and produced this write-up a few weeks ago:

Hello, Support Inc.! I look forward to meeting you! Until then, here is a little about me (Faith Wilkins). I grew up in Cherokee Nation (NE corner of Oklahoma). I attended graduate school for Occupational Therapy in Las Vegas, Nevada. I moved to Colorado in 2016 to work at a center (K-12 school, outpatient, employment and transition services) for persons with I/DD.

As a clinician, I help people establish mindful routines to support engagement in meaningful life activities through a trauma informed lens. I have also practiced OT on a therapy farm with the help of horses, chickens and donkeys! Before I was an OT, I was a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist at an inpatient psychiatric hospital in Fayetteville, AR. In my spare time I enjoy taking Bosco to the park, taking photos of Bosco, playing chess, doing yoga, and cooking.

In addition, we welcome our new receptionist, Tammy Burton. Tammy joined Support, Inc. in early February and shares the following information:

Tammy started on Monday, February 1st, out of the Aurora Office.

She will be taking over the administrative responsibilities, in addition to some other ones that Carole has managed.

Tammy comes to us with significant experience, having worked as an Administrative Assistant for Elbert County Health and Human Services.  Among her many talents, Tammy has great skillset that includes customer service, accounting support, office management, and Purchasing and sales administration.

Please don’t hesitate to contact Tammy if you have any questions.

Welcome to the team Faith and Tammy!  We are super excited and look forward to working more closely with both of you!

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Virtual Events This Week!

Starting next week, we will also have all of our events posted on the Support Calendar on our website! Please visit the URL below, navigate to the day and event you would like to attend, and click on ‘Location’ to open the Zoom session. Let me know if you are having issues accessing the website.

🧪The Mad Scientist Fair has been rescheduled for February 12th!🥼

Monday, February 1

Client Council is canceled this week! Join us next week!

LIFE Club: Game Day!

When:  Monday, February 1 from 12:15 pm- 1:00 pm

What: Join us for a game day! We’ll be playing the ‘What Would You Do?’ game where we go over our reactions to different scenarios.

Instructions:  In order to participate, please follow https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84207082079

Tuesday, February 2

Pop Culture Club: MLK Jr. Day 

When:  Tuesday, February 2 from 10:00 am-11:00 am

What: Join us as we explore what Martin Luther King Jr. Day is, who he was, and why we celebrate!

Instructions:  In order to participate, please follow https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84620087562 

Chill Club: Come Chill with Us

When: Tuesday, February 2 from 1:00 pm- 2:00 pm

What: Learn how to stay chill when life gets tough. This week we’ll be making pinwheels and calming jars! The materials lists are below.

Pinwheel Materials: paper, a straw, and a brass fastener or stick pin

Calming Jars Materials: a small plastic jar (or empty water bottle), water, glue, and glitter. Super glue or hot glue is optional to fasten the lid shut.

Instructions: In order to participate, please follow https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82353558685

Wednesday, February 3

MVP Club

When:  Wednesday, February 3 from 10:00 am-11:00 am

What: Be an MVP (Most Valuable Person) in your community!  In this new group, we will use arts and crafts, games, and engaging discussion to talk about safe relationships, combatting bullying, setting boundaries, and being the best, most valuable person we can be! This group is by reservation only, please contact Gwen if you would like to participate!

Instructions:  In order to participate, please email gwen.bonilla@supportinc.com

Moving and Grooving: Yoga

When:  Wednesday, February 3 from 12:15 pm-1:00 pm

What:  Let’s slow down and take a day to get back to basics. We will stretch and focus on our inner strength by using adaptive yoga techniques.

Instructions:  In order to participate, please follow https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85277454478  

Thursday, February 4

Join us for a brand-new story telling experience!

Fairy Tale Factory: Goldilocks and the Three Bears

When:  Wednesday, February 4 from 11:30 am- 12:15 pm

What:  Come play with stories! In this new group we will take favorite folktales, deconstruct them, rewrite them, and put our acting skill so the test by taking on the roles for a performance at the end of every month. February’s story is Goldilocks and the Three Bears! It’s going to be ‘just right’!

Instructions:  In order to participate, please follow https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86143640216

Friday, February 5

Pop Culture Club: What the Health!

When:  Friday, February 5 from 12:15 pm- 1:00 pm

What: Join us as we discuss nutrition and what’s good for our bodies.

Instructions:  In order to participate, please followhttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/84620087562

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Quarterly STAR Awards

This month we celebrated our recent STAR Award recipients. These awards are distributed internally for Special Thanks and Recognition.

The categories for awards are listed below.  When you see or hear someone in Support, Inc. going above and beyond, please email your nomination to HR.Admin@supportinc.com with the subject line being STAR Award nomination.  We will collect all submissions and we will deliver awards and recognition according to the frequency listed for each category.

In your email, please include the following:

  • Name of person you are nominating
  • Name of award from list below
  • Describe why your nominee deserves the award, specifically telling the story of the service or suggestion provided that makes your nominee the perfect candidate for the award.

MONTHLY AWARDS 

Best Team Player – peer-nominated recognition for someone going the extra mile for their teammates (monthly)

Best Customer Service – a quote from a consumer or provider or something seen or heard by a supervisor or peer regarding excellent internal or external customer service.  We look for patience, attentiveness, ability to relate to customer needs, excellent follow-up, going above and beyond for our clients  (monthly)

QUARTERLY AWARDS

Rookie of the Quarter – a newer employee catching on quickly, learning their job and doing more, suggesting improvements that are implemented (quarterly)

Process Improvement Champion – a suggestion for a change leading to increased efficiency, cost savings, boosting morale, or improved customer service that was implemented (quarterly)

Productivity and Quality Award– star performer in their prospective department (quarterly)

QUARTERLY EXCELLENCE AWARDS: Current recipient passes the award on to the next employee

  • Cindy Lou award of excellence in customer service – The Cindy Lou Award is given for ‘Exemplary Customer Service’ by a Support, Inc. employee as recognized by their peers.  This person consistently goes above and beyond for clients, providers, family caregivers, AND fellow employees alike.  Part of providing great customer service is having a strong work ethic. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication by putting in the time to listen and understand, responding to people/situations in a caring and professional manner, being adaptable to changes, and being able to problem solve (even in difficult and stressful situations).  This award is passed on from recipient to recipient.
  • Steve Taylor award of excellence The Steve Taylor Award is given to a fellow co-worker who exemplifies the value of our organization through consumer care and customer service. 

Other Awards

Anniversary Awards – Annual years of service where the month falls within the previous quarter.

Let’s give a big round of applause for the following reward recipients! We appreciate every one of you and your continued dedication to the people we serve.

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STAR Committee Meeting: New Year, Same Me (and Same Agency)

As we enter the third week of the year, many people will soon abandon their New Year’s Resolutions if they haven’t already. The STAR Committee gathered recently to talk about resolutions and to reflect on the last 12 months. 

The committee covered an array of topics ranging from goal setting to compartmentalizing stress in different areas of life. The group remains an open invite to employees and all are welcome to drop-in once a month at their leisure.

At the core of the conversation was the notion that sometimes New Years Resolutions can be rooted in shame. That sometimes we’re led to believe we’re not “good enough” as we are, so we need to lose weight, be more positive and strive to do better against all odds. Despite these annual pressures to “do better and be better”, maybe there’s no improvements to be made in the first place and that’s totally okay. Maybe we’re allowed to accept ourselves as we are, perfectly imperfect and striving for micro goals throughout the year without external expectations for improvements. Whether you decide to set goals or not is up to you, and committee members are here to support one another throughout remainder of this year.

As we usher in a new administration, we remain hopeful that the people and interests we lobby for are well attended to in moving forward. The End the Wait Initiative is a cause worth rooting for, and despite the recent budget cuts, we have a lot to look forward to this year. Our nonprofit arm, BACPAC, is seeing a resurgence. And our DEI Council and Committee has broken up into subcommittees, in an effort to tackle inequities across multiple fronts. Serving people with IDD is at the core of what we do, and we’re optimistic that by the end of this year, we will have seen major improvements across multiple teams to ultimately enhance the services we provide. On behalf of the STAR Committee, we wish everyone a Safe and Happy New Year. Our steadfast dedication to the people and families we serve remains unwavering. Please remember to take care of yourselves and each other.

The STAR Committee serves employees of Support with three objectives guiding the group: Fostering a positive work culture, promoting employee appreciation, and encouraging self-care. The Committee understands what a challenging year 2020 had been and will continue to promote internal opportunities for connection within the organization. In addition, further considerations to explore and strengthen relationships by facilitating one-time events online, mini-series for wellness and email campaigns will be explored, as well. For PRS to connect with their peers, please see our weekly LIFE Club updates on the blog for more information.