Friends and Supporters,

Our campus has burst into new life with all of its spring splendor and energy.

We welcomed new vibrant green pastures, early flowers, and baby animals. We shared our work throughout the country, were published, and even showcased our talents and taste buds in the kitchen.

Here’s a brief look back at what The Center has been up to:

TCFD Children's Specialty Hospital

A Sneak Peek Inside our New Children’s Specialty Hospital

As we near the completion of our new, ground-breaking Children’s Specialty Hospital we thought we’d give you a sneak peek at the soothing, joyful and playful spaces that will help transform the lives of our patients and their families.

Songs of Discovery Music Therapy Book

The Sweet Sound of Success!

Congratulations to our outstanding Music Therapy Team! They gave several presentations at the Annual Conference of the Mid-Atlantic Region of the American Music Therapy Association last month in Niagara Falls.

Our Senior Music Therapy Director, Conio Loretto, taught a captive audience about the clinical outcomes of participation in TCFD performance groups, specifically related to the areas of social confidence and competence.

Music Therapist Kenny Farinelli and Healing Arts Program & Training Specialist Meghan Smith had a standing room only crowd for their overview of our RESSST Program and its positive impact on sleep health. Therapist Veronica Manges was on hand to provide information about our Music Therapy Internship Program to current college students, and Music Therapy Director Beth Deyermond led meetings in her role as Past President of the organization. It was a busy but intellectually invigorating time.

“I’m always so proud of our team’s commitment to sharing our learnings while also contributing to the advancement of our field as a whole,” Conio said.

The team is now also advancing the field with their new book and you can get your copy soon. “Songs of Discovery for Music Therapy,” a collection of 32 original songs born of clinical work by our team of music therapists, is available on pre-order through Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

“Publishing this collection has been a long time dream of our music therapists and it is so exciting to see it come to fruition,” added Conio, “We are already thinking about Volume 2!”

Safe-Person Handling at TCFD

TCFD: A Model in Safe-Person Handling 

Safe handling is a critical piece of our daily work her at The Center. Thoughtful training on awareness and techniques has helped keep our community as well as our staff – healthy.

In February, an article by our team was published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine!

Entitled “An Evaluation on the Effects of Safe Person Handling Program Implementation at Long Term Care Facilities for Persons with Complex Intellectual, Developmental, and Medical Conditions,” the article highlighted the success of TCFD’s SPH program at reducing the frequency, severity, and costs associated with staff injuries incurred during person handling tasks.

This past month, Assistant Chief of Clinical Services, Curriculum and Training Ann Marie Connolly and TCFD Strategic Goal Manager Daniel Ryan followed the publication success by sharing our research at the 2023 National Safe Patient Handling and Mobility Education Event in Glendale, Arizona!

We are grateful for our team’s hard work on safety and desire to educate colleagues around the country.

Assistive Technology Conference

A Successful Spring Assistive Technology Conference

Thank you to everyone who made the Assistive Technology Conference a success! Teams of our colleagues showcased their work in every corner of The Center through informative videos and question and answer sessions. A special thank you to hosts Conio Loretto, Senior Music Therapy Director and Lindsey Veety, Director of Assistive Technology.

If you were unable to attend, please visit our YouTube channel for amazing and inspirational presentations on Animal-Assisted Intervention, Immersive Virtual Reality, Integrating Assistive Technology into Project-Based Music Activities, Art & Community, Adapted Sports and Recreation, Maximizing Engagement & Participation Through Assistive Technology, and the Future of Assistive Technology – available to watch here.

SAG Cook-Off


We now have our own team of Iron Chefs. Congratulations are in order to our new Self-Advocacy Group (SAG) of Chefs!

According to the discernible tastes of our panel of judges – the SAG chefs unseated our Chief of DNA, world-renowned Chef Cesare Casella!

In a light-hearted, kind, amazing day of tough chopping, sautéing, braising and plating, the SAG team’s menu of Caramel Chicken with rice, roasted butternut squash, and pumpkin seeds, and creamy Eggnog Ice Cream beat out Chef Casella’s fare of

Pontormo Bruschetta, classic risotto with chicken thighs and green tapenade and Crème Brulee with Candied Chicken Skin (dust).

Their success came with great support from our amazing Recreation Therapy team and other support staff.

“Using both standard and adapted equipment, the team was victorious! Each team member was assigned tasks that highlighted their ability in the kitchen,” said Recreation Therapist Erin Atkins who cooked up the idea with Chef Casella, “We used a switch activated ECU paired with a standard food processor and mixer, and an adapted pourer for those who rely on switch use to participate.” Success!

It was the second cooking competition for the SAG group. In the first, the group split off into two teams and competed against each other. We are so proud of everyone and cannot wait to see who they sharpen their knives against next!