Spring Issue 2021
Let’s Get Cooking
Planning to Succeed
School and Home
I Need a Lawyer?
03 Planning to Succeed
07 Let’s Get Cooking
09 I Need a Lawyer?
13 School and Home
16 Play for Life
19 Exceptional Sports
21 Carving out a Job
23 Happy Trails
Susie Redfern, is the parent of a special
needs child who recently “aged out”
of the public-school system.
She developed Milestones Magazine
to help individuals with disabilities
and their families achieve and celebrate
events and milestones in their lives.
PLANNING TO SUCCEED
Back in my college days I was taking a required
Biology class. One day, the professor was
giving a lecture on the process of photosynthesis,
which is how plants get energy from light
(or something like that). The process of
photosynthesis has several steps, which the
So, WHAT is
You may hear this term often and we hope
the following clarifies your understanding.
professor was going through. Unfortunately,
he wasn’t very organized. He would go through
Executive function skills are critical for all of us;
the steps out of order, which was exceedingly
frustrating to this then-college student trying
they are a group of skills that we use every day to
to take notes about the whole darn thing.
learn, manage and accomplish things and
This anecdote demonstrates the importance of
executive functioning (and no, I’m not referring
generally get what we want out of life.
to executive as a noun, in the company CEO
sense). I am pleased to introduce Caryl
Frankenberger, Ed.M., Executive Director of
Frankenberger Associates, who has written the
Executive functioning (EF) skills include
but are not limited to:
article below on this very topic.
Planning and Prioritizing
In order to complete a task, you begin with
the larger goal in mind. Once the goal is
solidified, you lay a plan of action, prioritizing
mental math requires one to make calculations
in mind. Working memory is a very important
EF skill and one that is often a weakness in our
learning disabled and ADHD populations.
what is most important. Students have to plan
and prioritize many aspects of their lives,
especially their short- and long-term
Completing a task or an assignment, socializing
and just about everything we do requires
one to monitor their performance. We have
Once you have a plan you have to organize
to think about what we are doing, how we are
the parts into the whole. This requires sorting
through and arranging information into a
system that works for you. Our children have
multiple organizational demands made on
them every day, from rising in the morning,
organizing and locating their belongings,
getting out the door, navigating multiple
classes, returning home to homework and
then heading to bed, and much more.
When working through a task one needs to
think flexibly. If you are rigid in your thinking,
then it is unlikely that you will apply different
approaches when problem solving. Often,
one has to revise a plan of action or obtain new
information, especially if a mistake has been
accomplishing the task and, in the end, asking
ourselves how did I do? This requires one
to monitor their performance and actions by
stopping and reflecting, an important skill that
takes time and practice to acquire.
SKILLS for LIFE
made. We all need to think flexibly and be
ready to change our course of action.
Attention plays a role in everything we do. To
accomplish a goal, you must focus on the task
at hand. Once you are focused you have to
sustain attention and recognize when your
attention shifts. If it has waxed and waned,
you must bring your focus back to the activity
and maintain focus until the task is completed.
Many students have attentional weaknesses
that hamper their ability to complete tasks.
Working memory is the ability to hold and
manipulate information in mind. When you
read you have to hold and comprehend
information from the beginning to the end
of the page or chapter; listening to directions
requires the same skill, holding and remembering
several pieces of information. Taking notes
in class demands listening, comprehension
and writing simultaneously, and performing
The old adage, “think before you act” applies to the EF skill
impulse control. It really means to control your impulses, to
resist saying or doing something, to stop one’s self. In addition
to controlling our impulses, we have to consider how our
behavior impacts others. This is an important skill for all
students to master.
Much like attentional and impulse control, emotional control
is the ability to manage your thoughts and emotions so that
you can achieve your goals. Emotions take many forms and,
for example, in the classroom a student has to control their
frustration, annoyance at others, anger at something that did
not go their way. Understanding and managing emotions is
critical to the successful completion of tasks, especially
group work and social relations.
Goal Directed Persistence
Persistence is essential for completing tasks. Many students
struggle to complete tasks because of distractions or because
inevitable setbacks become insurmountable roadblocks. It is
important to maintain a focus on the task at hand and to be
able to summon the grit necessary to push through inevitable
is a broad set of
of our lives.
challenges with the overall goal in mind.
It is important to
Executive functioning is a broad set of self-directed skills
that impact all aspects of our lives.
Executive function challenges are often seen at home, in the
classroom and at work. Executive functioning difficulties can
arise from weaknesses in any of the aforementioned skills,
which impact goal directed behavior. It is important to
understanding and address these deficits early so that they
do not become roadblocks to success.
Caryl Frankenberger, Ed.M.
Frankenberger Associates, Branford CT
understanding and address
these deficits early so
that they do not become
roadblocks to success.
Many kids love to mess around in
the kitchen. For some of them, the
messing around may actually
involve helping to prepare meals
with their mom or dad.
Some of those budding chefs may be
children with sensory or cognitive
challenges that complicate the steps
involved in preparing a recipe or a
meal. That’s where people such as
Terri Jordan come in. She came up
with a system to benefit her own
son, which is where a number of
parents start who create products,
services, or businesses that help
empower and support people
I am pleased to introduce
Terri Jordan and her creation,
The Color-Coded Chef.
The Idea Behind the Kit
Like all parents, I wanted my son to acquire basic life skills. So,
at age 16, we decided to try cooking. I quickly realized he did not
understand things like “1/4 cup” or “2 tablespoons” — the
measurements kept him from being able to follow traditional
recipes. But he did understand color. This was The Aha Moment
when the idea behind The Color-Coded Chef was born!
The more you practice, the better you
become at: Gross and Fine Motor Skills,
Speech, Socialization, Teamwork and
Behavior. Plus, when you make your own
food, you tend to try more types of food.
You open yourself up to new possibilities
After many hours of trial and effort, the idea of this cooking kit
became a hands-on reality. And its ultimate goal? To spend
and you elevate your quality of life!
quality time together while teaching life skills
that build self-esteem and independence.
WOW!! What a wonderful way to foster
pride and self-worth in a loved one as they
accomplish an everyday task!
How Does It Work?
The Color-Coded Chef Kit is a collection of
recipes with detailed step-by-step instructions
and simple illustrations that make the recipe
easy to follow and understand. The Ingredients
page can be used as a grocery list at the store,
then used as a checklist when you begin to
cook. The kit comes with a dry-erase marker so
you can easily check off lists on the laminated
cards. Wipe off and reuse! In addition to these
user-friendly recipes and instructions, the kit includes color-coded
measuring cups and spoons and a collection of safe, easy-to-use
common kitchen utensils.
What is Happening Now?
Over the last several years, we have come
so far — as a family and as a company.
And today, I am proud to say my son
Visit TheColorCodedChef.com for a sample Chocolate Chip
assembles The Color-Coded Chef kits
The Benefits of This Kit
The wonderful thing about The Color-Coded Chef Kit is that there
are so many more benefits beyond just learning the practical life
skill of cooking. With each recipe, you are incorporating: Decision
Making, Teamwork, Social Skills, Sequencing, Directions,
Terri Jordan can be reached by:
Health and Hygiene Self-Discipline, Safety, and Patience.
I Need a
Many parents with children receiving special education services,
have issues with the school system for one reason or another.
Perhaps their child is in what they regard as an inappropriate
setting (placement concern). Maybe the child isn’t making
expected progress in one or more subject areas. There are many
possible areas of concern.
For some (perhaps even most) instances of conflict, parents are
able to work through the problems directly with the school;
whether on their own or with the help of an IEP (Individualized
Education Plan) Advocate. The IEP Advocate is typically there to
provide support/guidance and mediation, if necessary, for the
parents, but is not a legal representative.
There are situations where, despite the efforts of everyone
involved, an impasse comes about and parents are left wondering
whether legal representation is their only option. I am pleased to
invite Christine Lai, Executive Director of the Special Education
Legal Fund, to address this question. Christine Lai wrote
A Parents Guide to Connecticut Special Education Attorneys,
and much of the information in the guide is helpful for parents
regardless of where they live in the United States.
“Many parents struggle through the special education process
with their child’s school district. For some, retaining a special
education attorney is the only way to overcome the obstacle or
hurdles in their child’s way to receiving a free and appropriate
public education. But what is a special education attorney, and
how can I as a parent find the right one for me?
A special education attorney is an attorney who practices law
on behalf of children and young adults to help secure necessary
educational services as required under the law (generally the
is an attorney
who practices law on
behalf of children
and young adults
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or IDEA). Special
education attorneys can practice on behalf of parents and
families as part of the private bar association or as part of an
agency like Legal Aid, or on behalf of schools, school districts
and boards of education. A special education attorney generally
has undergone training that includes college, a law degree, and
some type of either coursework or practical experience that
addresses the specific needs of special education students. The
last piece, coursework or practical experience, is particularly
important to consider when a parent is embarking on the process
of seeking out and hiring an attorney to represent their child in
a special education matter. Special education is a particular
specialty of the law and IDEA is a very specific and voluminous
piece of legislation with complex timelines and requirements.
Hiring an attorney who practices, for example, family law, will
not get you where you need to be in terms of representation by
a lawyer who understands the myriad and complex issues of
under the law.
special education. For the same reason that you wouldn’t hire
an attorney who practices patent law to defend you in a criminal
trial, you shouldn’t hire an attorney with any other specialty than
special education or disability rights law to represent your child
and family in a special education matter.
The other reason to hire a special education attorney to
represent your child’s specific issues in the special education
realm is because special education law in most states is a
relatively small and tight knit community. In Connecticut, the
private special education bar is well known to one another; most
of the attorneys know each other well and have often worked side
by side for many years advancing the rights of students in special
education. In addition, the parent-representing attorneys are
familiar with the school districts – with the administrators,
special education coordinators, in house attorneys, and outside
counsel that represent schools, school districts, and boards of
education in special education matters. When you as a parent
hire an attorney to represent your child’s special education case,
the school district will also have legal resources to draw upon.
In the complex process that follows, having an attorney that knows
the players is an invaluable asset for a family. In addition, a good
special education attorney also knows the other players that matter
in the special education community, and will know what clinicians
write the best reports and who performs best on the stand in a due
process hearing should it come to that.
So how do I find the right special education attorney for my
family? First and foremost, interview more than one attorney to
figure out who you feel most comfortable with. Since you are
going to be spending an inordinate amount of very stressful time
with this person, make sure you communicate well and have a good
level of trust with your legal professional. Word of mouth
recommendations are important, but remember that each
student is different, and each student’s case is different. Just
At the end of the day,
you decide to hire,
make sure that
1. they have specific
because your neighbor’s attorney was successful with your district
school doesn’t necessarily mean that the same will be true for you
and your child. Ask around – the local bar association will likely
have a list of special education attorneys, and private schools you
are interested in or professionals who have worked with your child
may also have recommendations of attorneys. A great resource
for special education attorneys is the directory of the Council
of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, or COPAA. COPAA is a
national nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the rights
of students and their families in matters of special education and
disability rights; they maintain a directory of member attorneys
which can be useful for families beginning the special education
experience in special
2. they have experience
representing students with
your child’s learning profile
as well as the outcome you
are attempting to achieve
legal process. (www.copaa.org).
for your student
3. they have experience with
your school district
4. you understand how they
are charging you for their
Special education attorneys come to this field of law for many
reasons, but in my experience, many of those reasons are personal.
So many of the attorneys that I’ve met in Connecticut who
represent parents in special education matters do so because they
have personal experience as a parent of a child with an IEP. Their
experience advocating for their own child in the special education
system in many cases has acted as inspiration for their professional
legal careers. Other special education attorneys have backgrounds
as special education teachers, administrators, school psychologists,
social workers. An increasing number of special education
attorneys are entering this field of law because of experience they
have had in the special education system themselves. As selfadvocates
and special education attorneys, their experiences both
inside the system and advocating for students within the system
can be particularly compelling.
Many a family has seen an attorney-client relationship run
aground over a misunderstanding or lack of clarity around
legal fees. While all attorneys are different and fee arrangements
vary widely among attorneys and across regions and states, you
should always have a clear understanding of how your attorney
is charging you for his or her services. In Connecticut, attorneys
can charge on a hourly basis or according to a flat fee retainer,
and the way in which an attorney bills may be a factor in the
attorney you select to represent your family. You should ask your
prospective attorney clear questions about the billing process –
now is not the time to be shy about money! Having everything
up front from the beginning will go a long way to eliminating any
future miscommunications or misunderstandings about fees or
fee structures. Finally, you should always ask your attorney for
an estimate of what he or she believes your case will take in terms
of time, and therefore money. While some things are not controllable
(the response of the school district in the process is the
biggest unknown), all attorneys should be able
to give you a ballpark estimate of what your case
will cost you in terms of hours and dollars, with
certain caveats in mind.
Finally, very often parents reach out to a special
education attorney because they’ve reached an
impasse or an obstacle in their child’s
educational journey, and they cannot move
forward without support. But what can you do
if you can’t afford the thousands of dollars in
retainer fees that most attorneys charge to let
you walk in the door? Special Education Legal
Fund was founded on this premise: that all
families deserve equal access to full advocacy
efforts for their children. By providing over
$350,000 in grants since 2018 to families in
35+ Connecticut & Westchester County,
New York school districts, S.E.L.F. has
endeavored to level the playing field for all families in special
education regardless of income or background. For more
information about S.E.L.F. or to inquire about S.E.L.F. grants,
please visit spedlegalfund.org.”
DISCLAIMER: This article contains material previously published online at
spedlegalfund.org. The guide(s) referred to in this article was written by a parent
for parents. This article is intended as a resource for families who are navigating the
special education system in Connecticut or Westchester, New York and is meant to
provide a basic understanding of special education attorneys in those regions from a
parent’s perspective, with an emphasis on attorneys who practice on behalf of
children and families. This article is not intended to provide legal support, advice,
or assistance, nor is it intended to replace the advice of a qualified special education
attorney. Families in need of legal advice, support, and assistance should contact a
special education attorney licensed to practice in Connecticut, New York, or their
specific state to discuss the specific needs of their individual student.
ScHooL and HomE
The pandemic has upended virtually
every aspect of life; including work,
recreation, and school. For many of
us, everything (or at least most things)
home-school their children and follow
the guidelines from the state related to
home-schools (which are considered
are now done at, or from, home. And
for our children, that includes school,
so many parents are, for the timebeing,
in effect, home-schooling.
Home-schooling families are not just
left on their own (unless they want
to be, of course). There are people,
organizations and resources that can
However, parents whose children
are enrolled in their district’s public
schools and are doing remote
learning because that’s the only
option their district currently
offers are not home-schooling per se.
Home-schooling families are those
who have made a voluntary choice to
help them set up and operate their
home-school and join with other
home-schooling families. One such
person is Fiona Sifontes, Owner/CEO
of NYAdvocates4Kids. In addition to
her Educational Advocacy work, she
has been involved in home-schooling
for her own child.
One may think of homeschooling,
where students remain at home and
learn online and/ or parents provide
the curriculum. Yes, that may be true
in some households but not all.
Homeschooling has come such a
long way, with diversity, homeschool
co-op’s, social gatherings, class trips,
classes at museums, galleries, and
even private art/ music studios,
family programs, concerts,
architecture, and parks and playgrounds.
Homeschooling is legal
in the United States, and each state
sets its policies and procedures for
homeschooling. Some states have
no requirements, while others want
parents to submit certain forms and
follow specific procedures. Please
check with your state before initiating
Homeschooling to prevent any legal
actions against you, the parent. Your
student can get the attention they
need with co-op classes with low
student-to-instructor ratios. Plus,
meet friends who may be your
friends for years or even family.
There are tons of activities for
students in New York who opt to
homeschool. Due to this unprecedented
time we are all facing, Homeschooling
has become an integral
part of learning. But to call virtual
learning homeschooling is a stretch.
I’ve homeschooled my son way
before this pandemic and continued
through high school. Without joining
a homeschool co-op, I would’ve been
lost and my son wouldn’t have the
friends he has throughout the years of
his homeschool learning experience.
Yes, this experience can be daunting
in deciding whether to homeschool
or not, and dealing with the administrative
and bureaucratic requirements
of the New York Department of
Education (NYDOE) may be
overwhelming, but not giving it a
chance, one can’t speak on what
There’s an abundance of programs for
homeschoolers in New York, and let’s not
forget Homeschoolers can get IDs as well
from organizations like Homeschool Buyers
Co-op, Zazzle, or HSLDA, to name a few.
If you want your student to receive a State
ID and who lives in NYC, one can get an
NYC ID at the youngest age of 10. NYC
ID gives you offers from free to discounted
events, such as museums and cultural
institutions, theaters, libraries, and
educational programs, etc.
Below are Homeschool Resources in
NYC DOE for Homeschoolers:
333 Seventh Ave, Floor 7, New York, NY
339 West 47th St, Third Floor,
New York, NY 10036, 917-816-1070
339 West 47th St, Third Floor,
New York, NY 10036, 917-816-1070
The ROC Network for Learning:
2nd Ave & East 2nd St, New York,
NY 10003, 646-854-4762
Publishers Note: This article is one of a series of articles
Milestones Magazine is working on about Home-Schooling.
The article included in the previous edition of Milestones
Magazine focused on home-schooling resources in Illinois.
Licensed to practice in
California and Colorado
for a Child with
Learn about the
Special Needs Trust
Email for your free
Family Asset Protection
Survival Guide or call for
your free consultation
with Diedre Braverman,
One old saying, drilled into the minds of many teachers and
parents, is that “children learn through play”. And despite the
prevalence of computers, smartphones, and other “devices”,
children still need to play: at home, at school, and at day care.
However, for children who have physical, sensory, cognitive,
or motor difficulties, playing itself provides significant, if not
insurmountable challenges. A child may not know how to play
with other children. He or she may have physical difficulties
preventing him or her from reaching or accessing toys or
There are well-known types of therapy (occupational and
physical, for example) that address some of these issues for
children. Less well-known, perhaps, are therapies such as play.
And one type I wasn’t aware of is called Recreational Therapy.
I am pleased to introduce Jeanne Hastings, who is in private
practice as a Recreational Therapist, and has developed a free
tool on her website to help people find certified and licensed
recreational therapists. Jeanne will let us know what recreational
therapy is, and how it can develop and enhance play and social
skills in children with and without disabilities.
“Recreational Therapy is probably the best kept secret in
healthcare. In fact, most likely the first time someone would
have contact with a Recreational Therapist would be in an
institutional rehabilitative setting. I first heard about
Recreational Therapy and Therapeutic Recreation when I was
a junior in High School. That was 1975. I always knew at the
time that I wanted to work with people with disabilities and
disorders, but I was not sure what profession would best
fit my own personal talents and interests.
That is when I heard that our local Community College had a
curriculum called Therapeutic Recreation. After two years at the
community college, I was hooked. I discovered a profession that
was centered on improving the quality of life of people through
play. Upon graduation I continued my studies in Therapeutic
Recreation at SUNY Brockport graduating in 1981 as a
Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist, CTRS. Later I
earned my Master of Science degree in Therapeutic Recreation
from the University of Tennessee and have enjoyed a career as
a Recreational Therapist for 40 years.
Recreation, play, and leisure have always been taken for granted.
It’s a given that anyone can enjoy play and participate in sports
and recreation. The mind set has always been if you want to try
new things all you need do is go and do it. You want to ride a
bike? Go do it. You want to ski or go out to a social event; you
just go and do it. If we told our parents that we were bored we
were told to “go out and play” Now let’s say you are involved in
a tragic accident or you are crippled with social anxieties, mental
illness, or physical barriers. Going out to “play” takes on a whole
new challenge. That’s where a recreational therapist can help.
All throughout my career the one question that I have been
asked most frequently is, “What is a Recreational Therapist?”
This question was usually followed by do you play “BINGO
and go out on trips”? The answer is, yes. We play BINGO
and go out on trips but there is so much more to it than that.
The clinical answer to that question is best stated by the
American Therapeutic Recreation Association, ATRA,
ATRA states, “Recreation Therapy, also known as therapeutic
recreation, is a systematic process that utilizes recreation and
other activity-based interventions to address the assessed needs
of individuals with illnesses and /or disabling conditions, as
a means to psychological and physical health, recovery and
wellbeing. Recreational Therapy means a treatment service
designed to restore, remediate, and rehabilitate a person’s
level of functioning and independence in life activities, to
promote health and wellness, as well as reduce or eliminate the
activity limitations and restrictions to participation in life
situations caused by an illness or disabling condition.”
(ATRA May 2015).
We, as professionals, work in rehabilitation as well as
habilitative services. Habilitative by helping people keep, learn,
or improve skills and functioning for daily living and also
rehabilitative services that help a person keep, get back, or
improve skills and functioning for daily living that have been
lost or impaired because of being sick, hurt or disabled. We
work basically the same as any rehabilitative service such as
physical therapy, or occupational therapy but the biggest
difference is our interventions.
We utilize the clients recreational and leisure interests to bring
about the desired positive changes. We are one of the first
professions to provide person centered care with the goal
always to improve the quality of life of the individual. One way
to improve the quality of life is through play, recreation, and fun.
Although we all work to improve the physical well-being of the
individual, recreational therapy also focuses on the emotional,
mental, and social health of that person.
Throughout my 40-year career as a recreational therapist I have
had the opportunity to work with so many wonderful, gifted
people in all types of treatment settings. The one treatment
setting that I found to be lacking access to recreational
therapy was in home health. Not only were our services
unavailable but there was no easy way to find a Recreational
Therapist in the community.
That is why I created My Recreation Therapist LLC. My
Recreation Therapist (myrecreationtherapist.com) is a FREE
tool that anyone can use to find and hire their own Licensed or
Certified Recreational Therapist. All a person needs do is sign
up, create a profile, and describe the “job” you would like to fill.
Once joined the person will have access to thousands of CTRS
and LRT’s all-over North America. With a Recreational
Therapist joining your treatment team you will have the most
qualified professional to address quality of life issues through
play, recreation, and leisure to help reach the individuals highest
level of life satisfaction while improving their physical, mental,
emotional and social health. Play is medicine.
If you would like more information about this life changing
profession, please feel free to visit our site at
When parents are looking for a
recreational/sports program for their
child, they don’t always find the right
fit. This can be true for typically developing
children, but perhaps even more so
for children with challenges. Park
districts typically offer accommodations,
and special recreation associations
and/or Special Olympics may fit the bill
for some families, but other families go
their own way.
weeks. The program has served 50-80
athletes weekly. Its initiatives include
a bowling program that has met 3
Saturdays monthly at a local alley
called Bowlero. The program charges
a nominal fee to bowlers and is
otherwise supported with (generally)
tax deductible donations. The program
was named the Murrieta Chamber of
Commerce Non-Profit of the Year for
2019. The mission of the program is
social interaction through recreation (in
One such family founded Exceptional
other words, fun and conversation).
Sports, based in the southern California
wine country town of Murrietta.
This program, like just about everything
we have taken for granted, was
Exceptional Sports started about 10
years ago, to fill a gap created when
Special Olympics cut its program
suspended due to COVID-19. The
organizers hope to start up again
soon. For more information visit their
locally down from year-round to 10
The founder of Exceptional Sports is Jeffrey Nickerson,
a “special needs” parent and lawyer specialized in estate planning and special
needs trusts. He and his wife run the Exceptional Sports program together.
Finding/keeping a job, especially the first job, can
be a struggle for anyone. That old “Catch-22”, “you
can’t get experience without a job; you can’t get a
job without experience” can be an obstacle for
anyone. This can be especially true for people with
challenges; my younger son being a case in point.
He has autism and some cognitive impairment. His
only real work experience is as “team member” at a
greenhouse whose mission is to provide job training
for people with disabilities.
We Grow Dreams remains my son’s only job experience to date.
He has been declared “not work-ready” by the Division of Rehab
Services (twice, in fact). It’s a real struggle. His story is not unique;
it’s shared by many thousands locally, regionally, and nationally.
disabilities, and increased workforce
On that note, I am pleased to introduce Garret Rosiek, HR
engagement at Bazaar Inc.
Generalist at Bazaar Inc. This company sponsors an initiative to
increase the percentage of people with disabilities in the workforce.
I’ll turn it over to him to write all about it.
How have we been able to succeed
with this disability and inclusion
initiative during the COVID-19
Disability Inclusion at The Bazaar Inc
At The Bazaar, Inc., our long-term goals involve hiring 50% of the
workforce with people with disabilities.
Pandemic? There were many
variables, but the main components
contributing to this change initiative
include top-down support, job
What is the motivation behind this? Besides giving individuals of
diverse backgrounds an opportunity to step into a career and work
carving roles, and altering the
human resources department.
environment, the data collected from our current workforce has
shown positive long-term benefits of having a more significant
percentage of the workforce people with disabilities.
Top-Down Support: This diversity and
inclusion initiative started with our
CEO Bradley Nardick. At The Bazaar,
At The Bazaar Inc, we have 22% of our workforce with disabilities,
which translates to 28 individuals in the company. This includes
individuals with disabilities, veterans, second-chance employees,
and people who have experienced homelessness. The employee
turnover is only 32% for individuals with diverse backgrounds
than 76% turnover for individuals without disabilities.
Inc. we are fortunate to have the
company’s CEO be as passionate
about diversity and inclusion as
Bradley Nardick is. The company
has been able to allocate resources,
energy, and money to grow our
diversity and inclusion initiative.
There have been notable improvements among our employees since
implementing the following strategies company-wide. Changes
internally have created increased communication and collaboration
There have also been significant
changes in the company’s strategic
planning over the past five years.
with managers and staff, higher success rates for those with
The changes include investing in disability inclusion consultants,
building community support partners, and altering many different
standard operating procedures to create a universal design with the
workplace that better supports people from all different types of
Job Carving Roles: The purpose of job carving is to take one job
and simplify it into multiple roles. The various functions are then
further analyzed, and task fluency is developed from one task to the
next. This creates more job opportunities with particular positions,
which can be very beneficial for an individual with a disability or
someone entering a new workplace environment. At The Bazaar,
Inc. we perform job carving by assessing our daily operations and
identifying areas that need improvement. After we find areas that
needed improvement, we can job carve out multiple roles for
and people who have
certain positions. This process has helped our company create more
roles for people with disabilities across a broader spectrum
and give more opportunities for success within
Alternating Human Resources:
The Bazaar, Inc. altered their human
resources department and brought in an
employee with previous experience in
applied behavior analysis and had
worked with individuals with
disabilities across a wide spectrum.
This employee, Garret Rosiek, also
has education in organizational and
industrial psychology and has used
his areas of expertise to create performance
training and development,
specialized onboarding, and has
been able to train other staff how to
work with individuals with various
disabilities. Due to the changes made
in the HR department, those working at
this organization are now better supported
within the organization and there have been
notable improvements with collaboration among
employees from all backgrounds.
communication and collaboration
The Bazaar Inc is dedicated and determined to have at least
50% of the workforce include people from diverse backgrounds.
This includes people with disabilities, veterans, second chance
employees, and people who have experienced homelessness. We
believe everyone should have an opportunity to work if they
desire that opportunity and we are driven to progress the
workplace with our diversity and inclusion initiative. At The Bazaar
Garret Rosiek can be reached at
1900 5th Ave, River Grove IL 60171
Inc our vision is one of hope and inclusion as we move towards a
more progressive and diverse culture for the future of our company.
We hope to see you there soon!
Many children, with a variety of conditions, such as Cerebral Palsy
and Autism, have physical and coordination difficulties that require
occupational therapy. The therapy often involves working with toys,
feeding utensils, and other devices to improve a child’s skills in
They use both hippotherapy (use
of the movement of the horse) and
equine interactions and the equine
environment (use of the
However, there are some therapy practices that take a bit more unusual,
albeit evidence-based, approach. One such organization is Brandywine
Occupational Therapy, LLC, which use horses extensively in their
practice and may add hippotherapy to their clients’ plan of care.
Their practice treats folks of all ages
with a variety of diagnoses, including
Multiple Sclerosis, Stroke, Autism,
Traumatic Brain Injury, Sensory
Processions Disorder, Low Muscle
The following information comes straight from the horse’s mouth (o.k.,
actually from the website of Lauren Janusz, operator of Brandywine
Occupational Therapy). It has been edited and summarized.
Tone, Down Syndrome, Cerebral
Palsy, Developmental Delays, Spina
Bifida, and Chromosomal Disorders.
“Brandywine Occupational Therapy, LLC provides occupational
Happy Trails to you!
therapy with the help of a horse!”
Helping Individuals with Disabilities & their Families
Achieve & Celebrate Events & Milestones in their Lives
Connections child care
Child Care Connections links families to child
care suited to children with challenges.
Child Care Connections also provides informational
articles (referencing North Carolina University
Extension Service) about adapting child care
Features a registry that both parents and providers
can Sign-Up for when they are looking for, or offering,
care for children with various challenges, such as
programs to children with special needs. Once you
sign-up you’ll receive the article Adapting the Child
Care Environment for Children with Special Needs.
developmental disability, autism, hearing impairment,
vision impairment, and more!
Check out our website: milestonesmagazine.net