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  • Trinity Services achieves highest level of accreditation from The Council on Quality and Leadership

    Feb 16, 2017

    NEW LENOX, IL — Trinity Services, Inc. is pleased to announce that, in February, it achieved the highest possible level of accreditation from the Council on Quality and Leadership, continuing a tradition Trinity started in 1992.

    The four-year Person-Centered Excellence Accreditation, With Distinction, confirms that Trinity Services uses person-centered solutions in its work to help people with disabilities and mental illness flourish and live full and abundant lives.

    Trinity Services is one of only a handful of organizations in the United States to have achieved this prestigious level of accreditation.

    CQL observed the scope of services and supports offered by Trinity Services; interviewed persons served, family members, staff members and community stakeholders; and evaluated how well Trinity met and implemented CQL’s Shared Values (which aim to ensure accountabilities related to interpersonal interactions), Basic Assurances (which list fundamental requirements for service providers) and Personal Outcome Measures (21 indicators used to determine what is important to each person receiving services).

    Trinity Services’ “Everything Counts” philosophy means that every action, thought and experience is significant. Every staff interaction with a person served creates a ripple effect that promotes self-confidence, heightens self-esteem and leads to the achievement of personal goals. 

    “Trinity staff members go above and beyond in their efforts to serve others,” said Raymond McShane, chairperson of Trinity’s Board of Directors. “I am proud of them for maintaining this tradition of excellence.”

    Trinity Services’ quality assurance efforts, whether they are the bedrock issues of health and safety, or matters of quality improvement, are fundamental elements of the services Trinity provides.

    Trinity initially chose to pursue the rigorous CQL Accreditation in 1992 because the process validates the quality of person-directed services and supports better than any other accrediting organization in the field.

    The accreditation process resulted in a shared plan of action that Trinity will carry out over the course of the four-year accreditation period. At several points, various reports and data will be shared with CQL to measure progress.

    The Council on Quality and Leadership is an international nonprofit, virtual organization dedicated to the definition, measurement and improvement of personal quality of life. CQL’s vision is a world of dignity, opportunity and community for all people. To learn more about CQL, visit www.c-q-l.org.

    Trinity Services, Inc. is a 67-year-old, nonsectarian, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping children and adults with developmental disabilities and mental illness flourish and live full and abundant lives. Trinity serves more than 3,500 people in 31 communities in Will, Cook, DuPage, Grundy, Peoria, Madison, Jackson and St. Clair counties, and Reno, Nevada. To learn more, visit www.trinity-services.org.

    MEDIA CONTACT:
    Meredith Dobes
    Communication and Media Development
    Trinity Services, Inc.
    (815) 717-3750
    mdobes@trinity-services.org

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  • Trinity Services partners with Orland Park Police Department to provide mental health services to referred civilians

    Feb 13, 2017

    NEW LENOX, IL — To assist police when they encounter someone in need of mental health services, Trinity Services, Inc.’s Family Counseling Center has entered into a partnership with the Orland Park Police Department to provide counseling on an as-needed basis.

    The partnership began at the beginning of the year and is part of the OPPD’s involvement in the International Association of Chiefs of Police’s One Mind Campaign that seeks to improve relationships between police officers and people affected by mental illness.

    The partnership between police and mental health counselors is important because one in five people will experience a mental illness in their lifetimes, and police departments are receiving increasingly more calls related to persons exhibiting symptoms of mental illness, according to Bonnie Hassan, director of Trinity’s Family Counseling Center.

    After police respond to a mental health-related call — with at least one officer trained to respond to mental health issues on each shift — officers complete a referral and submit it to the Family Counseling Center. A counselor will then contact the person within 24 hours and schedule a session within 48 hours.

    Counselors call those who are referred a minimum of three times, and if a person declines services or does not respond, the Family Counseling Center sends the person a letter detailing the services that are available — up to six free therapy sessions a year, as part of the partnership.

    Since the launch of the partnership in January, the Family Counseling Center has received 24 referrals from the OPPD.

    “Our goal is to make sure that people have the mental health treatment they need and decrease the need for police intervention because they have access to more appropriate resources,” Hassan said.

    Family Counseling Center staff members are available to OPPD officers 24 hours per day through an on-call system. Family Counseling Center staff members also provide on-site consultation when requested by an OPPD officer.

    In addition to providing mental health services through the partnership, in January, Trinity Services trained approximately 80 OPPD officers on autism.

    Trinity’s Family Counseling Center offers evidenced-based psychological services for children, adolescents, adults, couples, and families in individual and group formats in English and Spanish. It has four Chicagoland locations. Its mission is to strengthen family life, foster healthy personal development, and enable people to live responsibly, compassionately and safely. Family Counseling Center staff members include licensed counselors, psychologists and social workers. The Family Counseling Center also serves as a training facility, offering twelve-month internship and practicum experiences to students.

    Trinity Services, Inc. is a 67-year-old, nonsectarian, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping children and adults with developmental disabilities and mental illness flourish and live full and abundant lives. Trinity serves more than 3,500 people in 31 communities in Will, Cook, DuPage, Grundy, Peoria, Madison, Jackson and St. Clair counties, and Reno, Nevada. To learn more, visit www.trinity-services.org

    MEDIA CONTACT:
    Meredith Dobes
    Communication and Media Development
    Trinity Services, Inc.
    (815) 717-3750
    mdobes@trinity-services.org

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  • Tech Devices for People with Disabilities

    Feb 22, 2017

    We live in a society that values and uses technology of one sort or another in almost every area of life. We marvel at how we ever lived without a smartphone or tablet. At the same time, it’s hard to believe that this technology is only now making its way into the lives of people with disabilities. For them, it is not about luxury, or a way of simply making a task easier. It is about making things possible — things that you and I take for granted.

    Think about it. A tablet or hand-held device can make the difference between total reliance on others to being able to do things for yourself. It can help those without a voice to be heard. These extraordinary devices can also strengthen the connections between visits with family and friends.

    Unfortunately, state officials do not allow the use of Medicaid funds to pay for them because tablet computers and other hand-held devices can also be used for leisure activities. This is the case, even though the initiation of a leisure activity is an important skill that must be taught for many individuals, and despite the fact that the device can be a person’s primary source of communication or can significantly enhance skill acquisition.

    The rapid pace of increased technological capability, combined with decreased costs, is paving the way for putting technology in the hands and lives of people with disabilities. Prior to the innovation of the iPad, for example, assistive technology such as augmentative communication devices often cost upwards of $10,000. A tablet, protective case and software applications currently cost between $500 and $700, depending on the apps a person needs.

    Trinity is committed to using these newly available tools to reach and teach the people we serve. We have acquired a few small grants to purchase some tablets for our school program and our adult learning programs with the greatest need. Additionally, some people have received iPads through The Arc of Illinois’ Assistive Technology Program.

    Through the generosity of a large grant, Trinity is working with AbleLink Technologies and CreateAbilities, Inc. — companies that create research-based apps specifically for people with intellectual/developmental disabilities and mental illness, respectively. These partnerships will provide additional technological resources for Trinity’s adult learning programs and intensive outpatient behavioral health programs.

    The devices we already have available at Trinity have made an enormous difference in the lives of a good number of people who receive support. For more information about Trinity’s technology efforts, please contact Sherry Ladislas at (815) 717-3750 or by email at sladislas@trinity-services.org.

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  • The ABLE Act for People with Disabilities

    Feb 15, 2017

    At The Branch, Trinity’s new program for young adults with disabilities, financial literacy is being taught with the help of volunteer professionals.

    In December 2014, this type of learning became even more relevant for millions of disabled Americans with the passage of the ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) Act, which creates tax-advantaged savings accounts for people with disabilities. An overwhelming majority vote of 404-17 showed the U.S. House of Representatives’ commitment to giving persons with disabilities new hope for financial stability. This act allows a person to be eligible for an ABLE Account if his or her disability occurred before age 26.

    Congress debated this issue for several years as families expressed their frustration about the federal guidelines. The amount of financial support families are able to set aside for a loved one without that person losing government benefits seemed unfair. Now, he or she can still receive benefits, such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), as long as the savings account is less than $100,000. The account is tax-free and designed to support the person’s health and independence.

    Even if an individual’s balance exceeds $100,000, he or she will not lose SSI eligibility. The benefits are suspended but not terminated.

    The program is unique in each state, but they all operate somewhat like a 529 college savings plan. For example, each state sets a cap on savings. In Illinois, a 529 account cannot exceed $350,000. For the ABLE account, each person is limited to one account, and deposits are capped at $14,000 a year.

    Currently, a bipartisan group of lawmakers is working to tweak the program. They have suggested modifications that include:

    1. People with disabilities who are employed can deposit their earnings into their ABLE account — up to $11,770 above the $14,000 cap.
    2. Eligibility would expand to include those who developed a disability by age 46.
    3. Families could roll over the money they saved in a 529 college savings account into an ABLE account should the need arise.

    Many families do not have money to save. However, this program will help many who have the means to provide more than the most basic special needs planning. Limits to the ABLE account ensure that their contributions achieve the goals Congress has set — to provide more sensible, compassionate supports for a person with disabilities.

    Understanding and managing one’s money is an important aspect of full and abundant living. Besides the issues of security, a bank account is a symbol of belonging, of displaying full adult status and of rowing one’s canoe on the waters of the nation’s economy. The ABLE program goes beyond a one-size-fits-all model for supporting a person to realize this goal.

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Upcoming Events

  • 24th Annual Tom O'Reilly Memorial Golf Classic

    Join some American icons like Uncle Sam, the Statue of Liberty, Betsy Ross, Benjamin Franklin, Rosie the Riveter, Abraham Lincoln and more for a day of fun Thursday, May 18, at Odyssey Country Club in Tinley Park to benefit Trinity Services, Inc.

    Your registration fee includes a gift, lunch buffet, a bucket of range balls, pop, beer and snacks on the course, dinner awards, a complimentary specialty drink and cigar on holes 5 and 16, and more!

    The schedule for the day is as follows:
    10:30 to Noon: Registration/bucket of range balls
    11 to 11:45: Buffet lunch
    Noon: Shotgun start
    5:30 p.m.: Cocktails and silent auction
    6 p.m.: Dinner and awards

    Cost is $195 per golfer/$780 per foursome and $50 for dinner only.

    Click here for tickets and sponsorship opportunities.

    RSVP to Trinity’s Development Office by May 6 at (815) 717-3750.

  • 28th Annual Dinner Dance & Auction

    Please join us for a night of fellowship, fine dining, dancing, and silent and live auctions at our 28th Annual Dinner Dance & Auction, Saturday, Sept. 16, at Odyssey Country Club in Tinley Park. 
    This year's theme is "Havana Nights."
    The evening starts with cocktails at 5 p.m.

    Please check back for ticket and sponsorship information as it becomes available, or call (815) 717-3750.
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