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February 2020 CISS Newsletter
Hello to our amazing staff! We've had some projects in the works for many months, which we are very excited to now share with you. This Valentine's newsletter contains lots of important announcements for all of our staff and some wonderful interviews with our caregivers, including a married couple who has worked together for us for ten years! Please take time to review it and share it with someone to encourage them to apply with us. As you know, we receive new referrals each week so the needs are always high.

New Website Design!  Every few years, we take time to update our website, and the new one may launch this week! The new website will have a more modern, streamlined look. If you go to our site and it is down, please be patient with us. Give us a call or reply to this email if you need something you cannot find. Stay tuned to our social media channels for an announcement when we "go live" as they say. We hope you like it!

 
CISS YouTube Channel! We've created our first Toonly video that will soon be featured on our website's new About Us page. We designed this 3 minute video to give the community more information on our Respite and Independent Living services. Please check it out and give us a 👍 and subscribe so you'll be notified when we publish more! We have plans to create other videos using this format for each of our programs. A big thanks to Brandon, our skilled and patient editor!

We've got some exciting months ahead of us in 2020 and we are so glad to have you on our team!

Sincerely,
Sharon M. Francis
Co-Founder and CEO
Channel Islands Social Services
JOIN OUR ADMIN TEAM!
 
We are currently hiring for a part-time Payroll Assistant on our awesome Admin team! We'd love to hire from within to provide advancement opportunities to staff. As this is a part-time job with regular hours of Monday - Thursday, 9am-5pm with a one hour lunch break, staff who currently provide Respite Care may be able to continue providing respite support on Fridays or the weekends, typically not allowed for our full-time administrative staff. Bilingual applicants are preferred.

If interested, please apply via Indeed and make sure to include that you are currently a CISS employee.

 
February Staff Reminders
 
**Caregivers Needed in our Foster & Kinship Respite Program!
If you or someone you know has general experience as a childcare provider, babysitter or nanny, please contact Rosy in our HR Department for more information. Current care needs include day time and/or evening hours. 

Office Closed -  Monday, Feb 17th, our office will be closed in observance of President's day.
 
Respite Hero T-Shirts - Respite Caregivers who did not pick up their custom CISS T-shirt at the All Staff Meeting are welcome to drop by the office during regular operating hours Mon-Fri, 8:30am - 5:30pm.

JOIN OUR AUT2RUN 5K TEAM! - Wear your Respite Hero T-Shirt and join 30 of us as we walk (or run) as a team in the annual Aut2Run charity race to benefit the Autism Society Ventura County. The event will be held Sunday, April 26, 2020 at CSU Channel Islands.
Contact Tim to learn more!

Stay Healthy! We hope everyone is staying healthy and taking precautions to prevent against the spread of germs year-round. If you or the individual you support are not feeling well, or are experiencing any flu-like symptoms, please do not schedule or provide care. If you are ill, have accrued sick hours, and are eligible to use them, you may do so. There is a lot of misinformation being spread around the world regarding the Coronavirus. Please refer to the World Health Organization for accurate information.
Valentine's Special Spotlight on Anthony & Leticia!
❤️
Meet Anthony C. ❤️
15 Years of Respite Care

Anthony and Leticia are a married couple who are both Respite Caregivers for CISS. We are celebrating Anthony's 15 years with us and almost ten years for Leticia. Anthony shared some of his reflections recently with us in the interview below. Please continue reading further into the newsletter for Leticia's insight and an adorable family photo!
"I’ve lived in Simi Valley for most of my life. We attend Grace Community Church and enjoy learning about God and learning to trust Him in all that we do. God says he’s given everyone a talent and they should use it. We both feel one of our main talents is working with special needs. My brother has Down Syndrome, so I began my experience with special needs when he was born about 27 years ago. I was always comfortable around individuals who have special needs and liked the idea of being able to help, even as a teenager. I began doing Respite Care with my brother, and then other families. The families I worked with enjoyed having an older male available to spend time with their son. I really enjoyed working with all of my families and felt that I gained good relationships with not only the kids, but also the families.

I don’t do as much respite now because I work full-time as a High School Special Education teacher. I love teaching teens with special needs and I feel working for CISS has given me a great deal of experience working with families and seeing the perspective of parents. I am currently in my 2nd year teaching and I know quite a few students within the district with whom either Leticia, my wife, or I have supported through CISS. I even have one of those kids as one of my students now! 
 
What I love most about providing respite care is how appreciative families are and how excited the kids are when you get to see them. I’ve gone to events where I’ve seen previous, or current, kids unexpectedly and they light up with a big smile. I’ve worked with many different kids and I’ve gained different experiences with each one. I really enjoy the aspect of not knowing exactly what’s going to happen and I experience that feeling often working with the kids, in a good way. It was always a good feeling to know that parents trusted me enough to let me take their child out for a bit while they got to genuinely relax and not have to worry about how we were doing. 
 
I would say that the most important thing is to try and see the perspective of the families. Once you can do that you will have a better understanding of what each family expects and how they feel about certain things. Expect the unexpected, or at least don’t be too shocked when you see something you didn’t expect to see. When you can get through a “melt down” successfully and not have to tell parents until they return, you can build a great deal of trust because they know that they can count on you. I would also suggest asking questions, even simple ones. It's those little things that you feel may be unusual, out of place, or just different, that may be something important parents forgot to mention or may even be something they’ve never experienced before and should know about. 
 
It is great being a couple who provides respite. Both Leticia and I have worked with four families where we each provided support. We both began our respite career working with my brother. We support one another by talking about how our respite day went and giving support by listening or suggesting ideas. We remind each other of the importance of our own family time too."

 
ARE YOU A MATCH?
 
Have room in your schedule and your heart to help another family?

We update our Recruitment Board every few weeks to show a sample of those families currently needing respite support.

You can always find the latest info on the Staff page of our website. 

Click the image above updated 2/10/2020 and call the office for more info today!

**MONTHLY TRAINING**

Date: Wed. 2/26/20, 6pm-8pm
Dinner served at 5:30 pm for those who register. Seating limited to 40.

Topic: Lifespan Caregiving - Puberty and Hormones. How to Prepare and Care.

Speaker: Edith Wysinger, MS and
John Francis, MSW.


Click the image above to RSVP. 

**NEW 2020 Training Calendar here!**

💘 Meet Leticia C. 💘
10 years of Respite Care


"I’m from Argentina and I came to the States almost 11 years ago. I have been married for 10 1/2 years to Anthony, and we have two lovely girls, Abigail and Deborah, ages 6 and 4 1/2. I’m an English/Spanish translator and I worked as an interpreter in Argentina for a company providing therapy for children with Cerebral Palsy. I assisted the families with language services and learned about caring for their children when I was in my 20’s. After getting married, I started providing services for my brother-in-law and I loved it so much that I wanted to help other families take a much-needed break with respite. I was blessed with amazing families, children and adults that made me grow and challenged me to give the best. I enjoyed all of them and I still provide respite for one of them! He is almost 15 years old. So fun! I currently volunteer at church for the Special Needs ministry that meets one day a week.

We do many things as a family. We try to go to parks (Disneyland, Knots, Six Flags) and places to enjoy and create fun memories with the girls, and also Sundays we go to church and enjoy our day worshiping the Lord and learning His Word.

We live in Simi Valley and we really like the laid-back community. We have great friends that we visit often. I love the flexibility of working for CISS. The staff is great and the families that I work with are fantastic. I know that they respect my family time (or even business life: Anthony is working on a Masters’ degree) and that they request time way in advance so I can plan accordingly. I enjoy spending time with the children and adults whom I take care of.  I like learning their hobbies and routines. I’ve learned that their routines are sacred, and I need to respect that. I also like the fact that CISS trains us in what we need to know and they offer monthly opportunities to learn more. 
 
You need to pour your heart to these amazing children and adults with special needs, create a bond with them and their families. They need your support, they count on you, so be reliable, trustworthy and responsible. Take care of yourself so you can give them your best. It’s been great because we both love what we do. We share tips and experiences. My husband is very knowledgeable and gives me great support if I have a question about something. We support one another with love and respect, and we make sure we spend time together whenever possible."

 

With gratitude for all you do!

* Ana P.V. *

* Kaylene V. *

💕 Meet Ana P.V.💕
Respite Caregiver of the Month
 
Ana: "Getting to know the family and children, becoming a part of their family, and being in their lives is my favorite part. I love working with the children and making a difference. Hearing positive feedback from the families as well is really nice.
I love to help."

Family: "Ana is amazing with my child! She cares and loves for my boy as if she were his big sister. She is independent, but also listens to my child and understands when he is ready to stop playing. My son absolutely loves her. I really like her and trust her as well. If anyone deserves to be caregiver of the month it is Ana all the way. She is flexible, easy to work with, reliable and super helpful as well. This girl is going places. I am very impressed."
 
Celebrating 15 Years of Respite Care!
Argelia C. &  Larry L.

10 Years! 
Gloria J.

5 Years! 
Sylvia M & Nancy V.


We are so grateful for all of your support!
The Annual CISS All-Staff meeting was held on January 23rd. It was so great to see everyone who attended to celebrate the 15th anniversary of our organization. We were inspired by Linda, an individual who receives our Independent Living services, trained on Sexual Harassment and Discrimination prevention, and informed about exciting things ahead for us this year, including the planned elimination of paper timesheets.

Please make sure you stay tuned to our newsletters and future emails about training events we will be holding on our new Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) digital timesheet system as we roll it out by this summer.
😄 Recent Praise Received 😄
 
Marylou Y: "She is fantastic. We loved her!"

Erica H: One of the Foster parents we support stated, "I love her! I love her! Erica is very confident. When Erica came in I was still in the middle of everything - there was a lot going on. Erica jumped in and assisted with looking for the kids' clothes in the closet. She was just so comfortable. Erica is also funny, and so am I. Thank you!"

Allyson V: "Allyson is very sweet and she is great with our daughter. We are very happy with her."
How would you like to wake up on payday with your paycheck already in your bank account? It saves so much time!

Only 50% of our staff have enrolled in Direct Deposit. What are YOU waiting for? It takes 2 full pay cycles for it to take effect, so don't delay and sign up today!
Before clicking the photo link above:
1) Register on our payroll website using company #N2014. You must have been paid at least once first.
2) Have a voided check prepared, or a printout from your bank (which you can download for direct deposit showing your name, routing number and account number).

Can I mail or fax the form instead?
Yes, click to download and print the form in English or Spanish, or call the office and request one be mailed to you. Complete it and attach the required proof of account and either bring it by the office, mail it, or fax it to our secure fax line at (805) 299-0600. 
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Channel Islands Social Services
4000 Calle Tecate, Suite 200, Camarillo, CA 93012
(805) 384-0983   Fax (805) 384-0986
www.IslandSocialServices.org 

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