Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Heart O’ Texas Fair and Rodeo 2014

Methodist Children’s Home FFA students had a strong showing at the 2014 Heart O’ Texas Fair and Rodeo. The fair was held at Extraco Events Center from Oct. 2-11. MCH students showed lamb, swine and steer during the event. Students care for and prepare the animals for showing at the Boys Ranch as part of the FFA program. 

Below are the results:

Duroc - Class 2:  Chayce – 6th; Class 3:  Jacob – 1st, Prince – 2nd, Julio – 3rd, JB – 4th, Marvin – 5th
Fine wool:  Quentin – participated
AOB Heifer:  Star – 3rd; Mikayla – participated

Spot – Class 1:  Diego – 6th
Cross – Class 3:  Noah – 9th, Mikayla – 7th, Sonja – 8th, Nick – 4th, Edgar – 6th; Class 4:  Dagim – 5th; Jalyn – 7th; Justice – 7th

Southdown:  Paloma – 6th; Iyanna – 7th; Jessica – 17th
Medium wool:  Star, Hawa, and Emily participated

Simbrah Steer:  Justice – 4th
Chianina Steer:  Raymond – 6th; Damion – 7th

Congratulations to all our FFA participants this year!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Tyler’s “Day for Kids”

Staff from the Tyler office spread the word about MCH Family Outreach services while supporting a great family cause at the annual Day for Kids on Saturday, Sept. 20. The event, hosted by the Boys and Girls Club of Tyler, was held at Bergfeld Park in Tyler. 

Day for Kids is meant to encourage families to spend time together. Throughout the day, guests enjoy games and activities for children and learn about community resources. The event not only encourages families to spend more time together but also educates them about a wide variety of services available in the area. 

“Day for Kids was a huge success,” said Edith Wineland, regional administrative assistant. “It was refreshing to see all the businesses and community come together for the kids. I believe we opened some minds to the idea of providing an even safer, and healthier environment for much deserving children.” 

While some of the Tyler Outreach office played bean bag toss with the children, other staff members talked with parents about the services offered by MCH. The event was attended by approximately 500 people. The president of the Boys and Girls Club is Kevin East, a foster parent with MCH. 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Family Day – Fall 2014

MCH brought families together during its fall 2014 Family Day on Friday, Oct. 3. Family Day is hosted twice a year for families of youth in our residential program to visit the campus. The fall event is held for the Waco campus at the Johnson Student Center, and the spring event is organized by each individual home unit.

“Family Day is an opportunity for parents or guardians to spend time with youth engaging in fun activities, experience campus life and learn Trust-Based Relational Intervention (TBRI) techniques and how they can use TBRI to positively impact their family,” said Jeff Creel, associate administrator for Waco campus.

TBRI is an intervention model for a wide range of childhood behavioral problems designed for children who have experienced relationship-based trauma. MCH has partnered with the Institute of Child Development at Texas Christian University to implement TBRI methods in our everyday care.

On Friday, families joined youth for the pep rally in the afternoon followed by bingo and board games at Johnson Student Center. Parents then attended a training session on the IDEAL response, a TBRI method for correcting a youth’s negative behavior. That evening, families were invited to attend the MCH football game versus Lometa.   

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Afterschool Programs

The Recreation program of Methodist Children’s Home offers youth from the Waco campus and Boys Ranch a variety of six afterschool programs to choose from,” said Anthony Mead, afterschool coordinator.
“Choir and theater offers the opportunity to compete in the Texas Christian Athletic Fellowship (TCAF) league and show off the youth’s acting and singing abilities,” explained Mead. “Drum line teaches instrumental skills, music theory and these youth will perform at pep rallies and football games. The Independent Living program helps juniors and seniors prepare for college and independence. Horseback riding teaches care of horses and riding skills, and the physical education (PE) class consists of organized games and sports that offers a PE credit.”

“The afterschool programs are an essential part of seeing our youth learn more about themselves and as team members,“ he added. “These programs embody the MCH life skills. We try to give our youth holistic programs in which they can express their creative side and step out and shine. These programs are a continuation of the great works that are being done in and through our youth throughout various programs.”

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Training Program growth strengthens MCH

The MCH Training Department is going through a time of transition and growth in an effort to help MCH develop an agency wide training program, an important goal in the current strategic plan. The expansion of the training program will build on the strong foundation of training that has been offered by staff members John Warren and Stormy Cole, along with other MCH staff, in recent years.

With the addition of new staff last summer, the Training Department is developing a comprehensive training program to help enhance the professional development of employees in all departments at MCH. The training staff is seeking input from employees throughout the agency to ensure new training opportunities meet specific needs and interests of staff.

The training staff (pictured at left, from left to right) includes John Warren, director of training; Kristi Michaelis, staff trainer; Miranda Traylor, who provides training support in addition to her role as direct care recruiter; Stormy Cole, staff trainer; and Jean Wright, staff trainer.

As part of this effort, the training staff is evaluating documentation and records management, new employee orientation, and training needs in the areas of state licensing and COA requirements, risk management, MCH policies and procedures, management and supervisory skills, technology, and special interest training that addresses current issues or needs.

MCH staff will receive more information in the weeks ahead about new training opportunities. For information about training, please call a member of the training staff or stop by their offices located on the second floor of the Johnson Student Center.

Friday, September 12, 2014

MCH Students Participate in Dual Credit Courses

From left to right: Steven, Seleehom, Elizabeth,Vincenzo, Kelli, Cedric, Rachael, Jade, Andrew, Betty Morrow

This school year the University of Texas-University Charter School (UT-UCS) Methodist Children’s Home (MCH) in Waco has 11 students from the Waco campus and Boys Ranch who will be participating in the dual credit program. This program provides our high school juniors and seniors the chance to enroll in courses that will earn them both college and high school credit.

“These students all had a 3.0 or higher grade point average, in addition to having passed the college readiness test in order to qualify to take the dual credit classes” said Betty Morrow, school coordinator.

Six students are taking dual credit courses at McLennan Community College (MCC) in Waco. These students are taking courses in sociology, psychology, U.S government, philosophy and introduction to health profession/essentials of medical terminology on the MCC campus.

The other five students are taking classes through Texas State Technical College (TSTC) while attending the Greater Waco Manufacturing Academy (GWAMA) half a day.  These classes include robotics, electronics, engineering design and advanced welding.

“Students may enroll in academic courses, which apply toward a bachelor’s degree or they can choose workforce courses, which provide training for a particular profession,” Morrow explained. “Dual credit students typically can earn one semester of college credits per year.  The GWAMA students will earn advanced workforce certificates and also have guaranteed job offers from area business after high school graduation. All of the students get benefits like access to college resources, free tuition, and experience with college expectations and campus life.”

Congratulations and good luck this semester!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Foster Family Retreat 2014

Foster families served through MCH Family Outreach came together for a weekend of training, celebrations and fun during the Foster Family Retreat July 18-20 in Waco. Retreats are now hosted every three years by MCH Family Outreach.

Fifty-four families and 159 children attended this year’s retreat visiting from Abilene, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Houston, Lufkin, Lubbock, North Richland Hills, San Antonio, Tyler and Waco. On Friday, families had the opportunity to visit the Waco campus and spend the day at Hawaiian Falls Water Park.

On Saturday, families headed to Austin Avenue United Methodist Church. Children ages 0-8 were cared for by volunteers and staff and entertained by fun activities throughout the day. Waco Fire Department brought out a truck to show the children and let them try on their fire gear. The older children, ages 9 and up, were brought to the Waco campus to experience a “camp day” led by recreation staff. The children were led in a variety of games, art projects, and a movie.

While the children were busy with their day of activities, parents attended training on Trust-Based Relational Intervention (TBRI) led by Dr. Karyn Purvis from the Institute of Child Development at Texas Christian University. TBRI is an intervention model for a wide range of childhood behavioral problems designed for children who have experienced relationship-based trauma. MCH has partnered with TCU to implement TBRI principles into its childcare practices.

“We hope that foster parents and staff were able to see the principles of TBRI come alive in Dr. Purvis’s presentation and that they take these home with them to assist in their relationships with foster children in their homes,” said Kelly Smith, western regional administrator for MCH Family Outreach. “Additionally, we hope the opportunities for fun, fellowship with other families, and additional training ministered to them and showed them that MCH staff are dedicated to their success as foster families.”

Foster parents and staff were also treated to a lunch and awards ceremony on Saturday to honor several foster families for their service to children in need. Families were invited to attend worship services at Austin Avenue UMC on Sunday.

Alicia Carter, Albuquerque Outreach director, also received the Katherine Anglin Outstanding Social Services Award during Saturday’s lunch. Recipients of this award are nominated and voted for by Family Outreach staff. This award is in memory of Katherine Anglin, an MCH social worker who died suddenly in 2001 who showed much devotion to MCH, its programs and the families she served. Alicia was honored for her leadership and dedication she has shown to her staff and families in Albuquerque. 

Below is a list of this year’s foster care award recipients:

Core Awards:
Christian Principles - Tommy and Debbi Atkinson (Houston), Randy and Barbara Gardell (Waco)
Relationships - Chris and Katie Sherrod (Tyler), Burl and Cherry Hall (Dallas)Responsibility - John and Angela Vilo (Corpus Christi)Growth - Scott and Stephenie Smith (Lubbock), Joe and Janna Ledbetter (Abilene)Service - Amanda and Adam Jeffcoat (Lufkin), George and Angie Bunch (San Antonio)Hope - Miguel and Raquel Herrera (El Paso)

Tenure Awards:
3 Years – Donald and Cindy Beard, Burl and Cherry Hall, Michael and Marisa Luthanen, Howard and Lisa Redwine, George and Angie Bunch, Randy and Barbara Gardell, Mark and Elaine Hageman, Chad and Carrie Larsh, Chris and Katie Sherrod, Linda Vaughn, Joey and Amy Gallardo
5 Years – Scott and Stephenie Smith, Don and Nancy English, Pamela Rogers, Lee and Cynthia Gilmer, Dawn Caesar
10 Years – Michale and Kym Dowers, Jonathan and Shelly Phillips, Dan and Tammy Remmers
15 Years – Cassandra Wells, Bill and Eileen Armstrong, Bobbie and Molly Baughn, Thomas and Debbi Atkinson
20 Years – Sherry Turnbow, Steve and Michelle Gibbs
25 Years - Stan and Jenetta Davis