February 2020 Update

My aunt had this fantastic doormat that said, “Come back again when you can’t stay so long.” It sat just outside her back door, inside the screened in porch, which is where everyone who WASN’T a guest entered (read: her sons and the rowdy cousins that ran together as a pack in our teen years). I positively loved that doormat! That doormat = my feelings on winter. The street, the buildings, the lake, and the sky are all the same color (Is Dreadful a new color in the 64 pack?). Sunshine, or even the threat of it, makes me downright giddy. To keep my mood above sea level, we’ve began to plan our two signature spring events: The CCH 5K for Kids (aka the Walk/Run for Kids) and the Scramble for Kids.

The 5Ks for Kids, presented by NAE/NWAN, will be held on Saturday May 30th, at South Mastick Picnic Area in the Cleveland Metroparks. Regimented runners and certified strollers are equally welcome – Visit The Runniversity for early bird registration! http://bit.ly/2UnT6bN. And who can resist a post-run gnash? Burgers, brats, and hotdogs will be sizzling on the grill as you cross the finish line! Jesse’s Jukebox, Stilt-Walking, Balloon-Twisting, Face Painting will entertain the kids. Adults can get their game on, too Corn Hole, Giant Jenga, and Connect Four.  Bring the family, bring your friends, bring your dog! The winning canine will receive a branded bandana and Greenies for all who show! Kinetics, Kilometers, Korn Hole, and `Kue are a fun way to Kick It AND help the Kids at CCH.  And who knows… maybe the Tribe Hot Dogs will “run away” with the day.

Speaking of running away with the day, the committee for our annual Scramble for Kids has received some feedback that the day simply goes on too long when faced with the demands of work, family, and all else when balanced against a fun but long day. We were listening! This year’s Scramble for Kids, generously presented once again by Fortney & Weygandt, will be held Monday, June 22nd, at Elyria Country Club, with a 10am shotgun start! While the day of play will still include all of the fun bells and whistles, including a Hole-in-One sponsored by Mercedes Benz of North Olmstead, golfers will enjoy cocktails and dinner, immediately following the conclusion of play. Our goal is for you to support our family but get home in time to enjoy yours.

As your other family, we also wanted to let you know how we at Cleveland Christian Home are doing. Our kids continue to amaze us, both in their resiliency and willingness to participate in their treatment. The willingness comes usually only after hard won trust is established with the Residential Treatment Specialists, with whom the kids spend the most time. Many kids will do just about anything, including running away from Cleveland Christian Home, to avoid addressing their issues – trauma. The Residential Treatment Specialists, who are with the kids literally every moment of every day, must have specific training and experience, but they must also have the mettle to manage the stress of their work.

They are the “Oz” of Cleveland Christian Home, and the backbone of our programs. There is a national crisis in the shortage of people willing to do exactly this work, and CCH is no exception. In fact, Cleveland Christian Home is one of 14 agencies in a Learning Collaborative through the Woodruff Foundation and in collaboration with Yale University Department of Psychiatry, to study and develop plans to attract and keep talented employees. We are hiring. If you know anyone interested in working in Human Services, looking to gain experience, and who want to make the difference in the life of a child about whom too few people have cared, consider working at Cleveland Christian Home. Visit http://cchome.org/careers/ to view open positions.

Last but certainly not least, our heartfelt thanks to all who contributed clothes, toys, stockings, candy, school supplies, and gifts of money to make sure that our kids had a joyous Christmas. Each boy woke up to a huge gift bag sealed with a stocking, and in each bag were the items from their wish lists — individually wrapped, because let’s face it, half the fun is tearing through the paper! They spent the day in their brand new pajamas (if they wanted), had a fantastic meal, watched movies, and above all, played with their new toys and games.  They were able to just be kids – as it should be – thanks to your care and generosity. May God bless all of you – you are a gift to us.

More next time!

With love and gratitude,
Judith

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