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REPORT
Moraine Township Board of Trustees
Thursday, January 12, 2012 5:30 PM
Moraine Township Office

REPORT OF MEETING
January 12, 2012

Due to a lack of a quorum no business could be conducted, but as a courtesy to our grantees we listened to the presentations of the agencies that came out in the inclement weather.

Trustees Dwayne Douglas, Margoth Moreno and Jackie Schechter were absent. Supervisor Mari Barnes, Trustee Bryna Gamson, staff and Janet Freed attended as well as two presenters from Links and A Safe Place.

Agency Presentation
Links - North Shore Youth Health Service
Amy Skalinder, Executive Director

Amy thanked the Township for the support of Links and the increase in the grant this current year. Amy had been with the organization for 1½ years now and confidently reports that progress is being made. Links serves Moraine Township residents in all of their programs but highlighted the work done in the middle schools throughout the Township, because this is the program where there are the most Moraine Township residents. The program focuses on preparing the students for high school and the issues that they will face such as offers to drink, accept a ride with someone who has been drinking, or a sexual encounter. The group at the high school they work with are students that have been identified as at risk; in the junior high schools they see everyone.

There were 103 presentations completed in Highland Park last year. There were 29 Highland Park students who came into the clinic this past year. Trustee Gamson made sure that the agency directors were aware of the new requirements for grant applications this year. New this year is verbalizing goals for each program and clearly articulating in writing, as well as measuring outcomes for each. They have identified specific areas that need improvement such as numbers reported by clients completing anonymous surveys about whether they use condoms every time they have sex, or if they are on the pill whether they take it daily at the same time of day – these numbers could be better and they are making sure that counselors continue to question clients and urge compliance. Janet Freed asked whether parents are ever concerned about the presentations, and Amy shared that although not happening all the time, they do encourage questions and respond to them.

A Safe Place
Noelle Moore, Interim Executive Director

Noelle shared that they are in the middle of their fiscal year but in the most recent fiscal year, A Safe Place served 243 Moraine Township residents. There are two new programs this year. One is the Family Visitation Center in Mundelein for families to meet in a safe place for the purpose of supervised visits by the parent who does not have custody or supervised exchanges for off-site visits. Served over 70 families in this program; numbers for supervised visits are at capacity and numbers for supervised exchanges are growing. In many cases there is still an open court case and the parents are on their best behavior which contributes to calm and orderly visits – there are specific rules about behavior and what they can bring in (no gifts). Second program is in Housing. In July they opened 20 additional apartments in Zion for women and their children who need housing. Noelle has been with A Safe Place for seven years; the Board has hired a search consultant to conduct a nationwide search for a new Executive Director. The agency continues to meet the needs of victims of domestic violence and serve clients and their specific requests as best as possible. The Outreach Coordinator, who is a teacher by training, makes presentations in schools about the warning signs of domestic violence and how to encourage healthy relationships and seek help when necessary. A Safe Place has discreet cards that give out their 24-hour emergency hot line number that they give to schools, places of worship, libraries, government bodies, etc. Noelle will make sure a supply is sent to the Township. The Highland Park community actually has the highest percentage of people seeking orders of protection through the court system, and the Police Department of Highland Park is most helpful.

Respectfully submitted,

_______________________
Ellen S. Gussin, Moraine Township Clerk

 

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