It is hard to believe that we are near the end of June already. I am not sure why it seems that the summer months seem to fly by but that certainly is the case. NER’s fundraising dinner has come and gone and what a great night it was! Thanks to everyone for their support! I especially want to thank Kathy and Glen Johnson for being our guest speakers this year. They touched our hearts and for anyone who did not fully understand the need for support services, they educated and they inspired us all!
And now we are gearing up for NER’s annual luau, after that will be the annual employee family picnic; two very special events that I hope people take advantage of. The first brings the people we serve: families, residents, and clients to a gathering for a fun evening of great food, music, and socializing. It is a time when everyone is reminded how much they all have in common and how fortunate we all are to be able to come together and enjoy friendships made through NER.
The employee/family picnic is NER’s way of saying thank you to the many amazing people who give of themselves every day to ensure that the people we serve receive the best care possible. Most of our programs are open 365 days a year and hours include weekends and holidays. This one night each year NER gives back to the children of our employees by bringing them together for a fun night with their moms and dads as they enjoy pony rides, face painting, and games. Many volunteers help make this possible and we so appreciate their help. This is also the night NER announces the Ken and Marion Owens Scholarship Award winners and hands out the service awards. This year we have more than 35 awards including two employees earning their 30 years with NER!
Generally speaking, NER is not a place where people come to work just for the money; it is a place where people come to make a difference in the lives of others. In reality, it ends up being a job where the job itself makes as big a difference in the employees’ lives as it does those they serve. A smile, a high five, or a hug is something no other job can give back quite like it can working with a person with special needs.
We need not remind ourselves why we go to work each day. Our work does not get boring; it never is the same from one day to the next. We have the power to make it better from one day to the next. Our attitude, our energy, and our acceptance of one another is what makes our jobs so special.
To those families still having children living at home, you are amazing and we are so happy to help by offering respite care, in-home care, and extended day services. We know that these services meet your needs today, and they also serve as a stepping stone by helping prepare your kids for when someday, whenever that might be, they move into a new living arrangement, wherever that might be.
To those families who have already made that transition to long-term care, thank you for allowing NER to be such an important part of your lives and serving your loved ones.
I hope you all consider joining us for the luau if for no other reason than to watch how truly remarkable it is to see the interactions with everyone. The smiles, the amazing dancers, and the fun of just all being together is as good as it gets!
Corrine Schmidt, Executive Director