Welcome to the September 2021 TCFD Newsletter!

Family, Friends, and Supporters:

We are always moving forward here at The Center for Discovery®!

In September, we began extending way beyond our borders – informing, teaching, collaborating, and forming new partnerships.  And here on our campus, we spent each day innovating new ways to enrich the wellbeing of our residents and students with complex conditions, like autism. And, we are doing all of that while also protecting a very vulnerable population from COVID-19.

Here are some highlights from the month of September:

COVID-19 Update

The Center is actively gearing up for a COVID-19 vaccine booster program.  The staff and residents (12 years+) who received their first shots in December 2020, January 2021, and February 2021 will be the first to receive boosters of the Pfizer vaccine.

Boosters of the Moderna and J&J vaccines have not yet been authorized by federal authorities.

TCFD President, Dr. Theresa Hamlin, stressed that The Center’s Discovery Health Clinic continues to offer all three vaccines – Pfizer, Moderna, and J&J – on a weekly basis.

Introducing a New TCFD Office in Rochester, New York

The Center has a new office in Rochester, NY!  It will be an extension of the current Office of Strategic Outreach and Partnerships – based out of Hurleyville, New York.

Led by Dr. Helena (Linky) le Roux Ohm, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, this office will help expand our statewide network of partners and donors, and also serve as an important foundation for The Center’s strategic priorities, such as the Children’s Specialty Hospital.

Children’s Specialty Hospital Update

The construction for our Children’s Specialty Hospital project kicked-off last month!

In these early weeks, the crews are doing a lot of interior demolition. The space that will become the state-of-the-art Alemany Learning Center will be cleared for development in mid-October. That space will eventually allow for national and international conferences, seminars and other educational and research endeavors.

By the end of this month, concrete work will begin as well. The target completion date for the CSH is November 2022.

Our New Radio Relationship

Our outreach into our local Catskill community is about sprouting new roots with our new radio relationship to WJFF – Radio Catskill!

Soon you will hear more about our work on 90.5FM or via livestreaming!

“We want to get more visibility out to the community about what you are doing at The Center.  I applaud all that’s being done on the campus,” said WJFF General Manager, Tim Bruno, and he added,” There is a whole new influx of people here in the Catskills. They are finding us and they are telling us we are a great resource.  We are a public radio station in a rural area but because we are now online are kind of everywhere.”

While Tim has been volunteering at the station for years, he is new to his position and he would like to see the station grow and help develop the area in new ways.  “We are a public station – for – the public.   We have a megaphone and can tell the public what’s going on.  We are hyper-local.  We are now interacting with the community face-to-face and we want to connect with as many people as possible,” he stressed, “I have an open door, and I would like public feedback.  We are all collaboratively wanting to improve the community.”

There is Always Music in the Air

Imagine walking down the halls of your office or through your home and beautiful music suddenly fills the air? That’s what it is like here at The Center as our amazing singers and musicians of the Integrated Arts team travel like troubadours from the 12th and 13th Centuries!

They move from house to house and building –to-building throughout the pediatric campus – entertaining all in outdoor gatherings!

“The Music Therapy team has been building up a repertoire of music that has universal appeal to reach everyone we visit,” said Conio Loretto, TCFD Senior Director of Music Therapy, “While these pop up sessions do have entertainment value, research shows that changing up a routine with something fun (like music) also improves brain function and has a positive impact on one’s mood.”

To learn more about every facet of our Integrated Arts program, join our educators in a free virtual series of classes – with a focus on clinical innovation! Simply go to:  https://bit.ly/TCFDClinicalInnovationSeries2021 and register!

Setting Sail on the Hudson

The impossible is always possible here at The Center for Discovery®!

Five of our medically-fragile residents set sail over the course of two days last month as captains of the Impossible Dream Catamaran, the world’s first catamaran built from the ground up to be universally accessible. It was clearly the trip of a lifetime for our residents and staff.

“It spells out for me that here we are still in a pandemic and The Center is still so committed to bringing joy to residents and staff and is doing it without compromising safety,” said Jim Cashen, TCFD Assistant Chief of Integrated Arts.

The trip involved a great deal of planning by our Recreation Team and the crew, as well as our Nursing and Physical Therapy teams. The Impossible Dream was on its 7th summer voyage up and down the East Coast.

Orchard Bounty!

It’s our favorite time of the year – well, one of them! And the orchards this season are bursting with beautiful apples. Abundant rain, moderate temperatures, and now cool nights have made this a banner year.

Our residents and students love picking, sorting, washing, and making the freshest cider by hand. Did you know it takes 30-40 apples to make one gallon of cider?

Living Art

Artist Edgar Degas once said, “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.” So true!

Just look at this stunning glimpse into the minds and hearts of our resident, student, and educational assistant artists! This colorful mandala was created on the Big Barn campus with end-of-the-season flowers.  Magical!