C.I.T.Y. News

May 2019

It's our birthday!

I can barely believe that C.I.T.Y. of Support is celebrating its one-year anniversary. What an incredible year we've had! We have barely had time to catch our breath between hosting playdates, coordinating education roundtables, planning special events, increasing our visibility in the community, creating outreach opportunities, seeking out creative funding sources, and facilitating our social media conversations.


Thank you to everyone for believing in our C.I.T.Y. and watching as our mission became a reality over the past year. I am especially grateful to all of the organizations and businesses who have supported us financially; all of the parents and professionals who have attended our education nights; all of the board members and committee members who selflessly volunteered their time; and to my family who has adapted to my new time commitments (!). We have so much in store for our second year, and we hope you'll continue to participate and share in the journey with us! We are here to support each other, and our community is the strongest when we all collaborate.

As a reminder, all of our events are also listed on our Google Calendar and on the

C.I.T.Y. of Events tab on our website.

Education Roundtable Series #2: “Navigating Family Outings in the C.I.T.Y.”

WEDNESDAY EVENING, MAY 15TH FROM 5:00-7:00

WE ROCK THE SPECTRUM SENSORY GYM IN PALATINE

C.I.T.Y. of Support is committed to fostering the sharing of knowledge from a variety of perspectives. Our Roundtable Series provides professionals and parents an opportunity to share their experiences in an informative, but casual/friendly environment (snacks provided too). Questions, discussions, and one-on-one conversations will be encouraged towards the end of this adult-only event.


We understand how stressful outings to the grocery store, mall, zoo, park, or family events can be for our families. The goal for this discussion is to provide tips and tricks for a successful outing from a therapist and parent perspective, while also providing special options for families in the area. This event is applicable for both parents and professionals, and Early Intervention continuing education credits are currently pending approval.


Registration is required through our Eventbrite link, although this event is FREE for parents. We hope to live-stream this conversation on Facebook for those who are unable to participate in-person, encouraging virtual participation as well.


***Also, due to community requests, a post-discussion happy hour will be scheduled at a nearby restaurant immediately following the event. Since caregivers will already be arranged for your children, take a little extra time that night and enjoy making connections with other adults who understand.***

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Graduation Celebration

SATURDAY AFTERNOON, JUNE 15TH FROM 3:00-6:00

BUEHLER YMCA IN PALATINE

Because every child is graduating from something

Has your child graduated from one/more of his/her therapy goals? A year in school? A piece of equipment? A discipline of therapy? A developmental milestone? Let’s celebrate!!


Registration for our Graduation Celebration will open on MONDAY, MAY 6th through Eventbrite. (A reminder email will also be sent out.) Our event committee has reserved a large, indoor area at the Buehler YMCA in Palatine (the largest YMCA in Chicagoland) with its own climbing structure and enclosed imaginative play space. With support from local businesses, clinics, and organizations, we are hoping to provide access to this engaging play environment, food and drinks, and a performance stage which will host our live music concerts and graduation ceremonies all at NO COST for parents. All graduates will also receive a medal with their name and a brief description of their graduation achievement to commemorate the afternoon.


Additionally, we are thrilled to have the space to feature extra stations including arts/crafts, balloon creations, face-painting, cotton candy creations, photo opportunities, and a make-your-own trail mix bar (all included with the purchase of a reasonable $5 wristband per child). We are working hard to create a memorable experience for the children in our C.I.T.Y. and their families (of course siblings are welcome to attend as well!). We are hoping that our community will want to share in the excitement and participate in this event as well!


Local businesses, clinics, and organizations: we welcome your collaboration as always! If you have not already done so, be sure you have added your information to our professional email list, so that you receive relevant collaborative opportunities, such as this past email which details how YOU can help participate in our upcoming graduation celebration.


Special shout-out to Prospect Music Therapy, Dynamic Lynks, Kidnectivity, and TherapyWorks for being some of our first contributors! Thank you!

Regional Playgroups and Meet-Ups

NORTHWEST SUBURBS: ARLINGTON HEIGHTS MEMORIAL LIBRARY:

As always, we are meeting on the 2nd Tuesday of the month (5/14) for our “Developmental Playgroup.” We are also continuing to offer a more adult-focused group called “Caregivers, Coffee, and Play” on the 4th Sunday of the month. However, due to Memorial Day, we are meeting this month on Sunday, 5/19. Come join us and meet other families in the neighborhood.


SOUTH SUBURBS: SATURDAY, MAY 25TH at 9:30AM:

Facilitated by Jennifer Blaszyck, a parent and C.I.T.Y. member, on the last Saturday of every month at the Little Something Extra Bakery and Cafe in Oak Lawn.


**OTHER REGIONS**

We are continuing to research other neighborhood options in the North, West, and City locations that will help to accommodate more families. We are especially interested in partnering with other local libraries in those areas. If you are interested in helping to facilitate these types of events near you, please feel free to contact us at hello@cityofsupport.org. Thank you!

thank you!

Pop the Cork for C.I.T.Y. of Support

"Pop the Cork for C.I.T.Y. of Support" was such an incredible evening thanks to our gracious hosts, the Arlington Heights Junior Women's Club. They chose our organization to be the beneficiary of their annual spring fundraiser, and the night was a huge success! From the silent auction and the incredible raffle prizes to the variety of wines and delicious appetizers/desserts, we all had a wonderful time. It was truly humbling to be surrounded by board members, community members, and C.I.T.Y. members all gathered together for an evening celebrating our C.I.T.Y. of Support. We are so grateful to AHJWC and all who attended.

Bi-Annual Spring High-Five Drive Fundraising Campaign

Thank you for all the "high fives" last month! Just a $5 contribution from our members made a significant impact when combined with everyone's donations. These funds will continue to support our outreach initiatives of 1) increased visibility in the community, 2) creation of "Welcome to our C.I.T.Y." gift bags for parents of newborns being referred for therapy, and 3) contributing to a C.I.T.Y. center at a local library that houses special materials/resources specific to our community. Our volunteer-run organization counts on your support in order to sustain and grow our organization, and your participation in our bi-annual fundraising campaigns (fall and spring) is greatly appreciated.


Our "D.I.Y. in the C.I.T.Y." card kits are still available for sale through our website. With "Thank You/Thinking of You/Happy Birthday" themes, they are relevant year-round and serve as a perfect gift for someone special (family, friend, teacher, therapist). These cards are a great fundraiser for our C.I.T.Y., as they promote a fun, developmentally-challenging activity for parents to complete with their children and they provide joy to others. Plus, at only $5 each and all the materials provided, it's a great value. (It's hard to find a generic card at the store for much less than that!) Visit our website to place your order!

Important Reminders

Welcome to our C.I.T.Y.

Volunteers wanted! We are looking for handwritten letters from parents who wish to share their experiences of having a child who receives/received therapy services. Looking back, what were your initial reactions? What did you expect? What has your journey been like? What advice can you share? We do not expect you to share your personal identifying information, as we have complete respect for your privacy. We do hope, however, that this heartfelt, handwritten letter will be a source of encouragement, hope, and motivation for the new parents in our community. To contribute your story, please either scan and email letters to: hello@cityofsupport.org or mail them to our office address at:

800 E. Northwest Highway, Suite #109 in Mount Prospect, IL 60056.


Your letter will accompany information about C.I.T.Y. of Support, a small keychain to keep important business cards handy, and a new book to share with their child. For more information regarding our 3 initiatives for 2019, please refer to our website under the tab "C.I.T.Y. of Outreach."

Resource Round-Up

Have you noticed this new addition to our Facebook Group? Starting the first day of each month, we are creating a post titled our Resource Round-Up. In order to make it easier for our members to find upcoming resources/special events, businesses/organizations are asked to COMMENT on this monthly post, rather than creating many different separate posts. The consistent title ("Resource Round-Up") makes it easy to search, and it helps ensure that our newsfeed doesn't become overwhelmed with event posts, as the purpose of our Facebook Group is to facilitate discussions and interactions among members.


REQUIREMENTS FOR COMMENTING ON OUR "RESOURCE ROUND-UP" POST:

  • Local Event (Chicago or Surrounding Suburbs)
  • Applicable for Our Community of Parents/Families
  • Event Is Within 6 Months of Current Month's Post
  • Must Specify the Sponsor of the Event
  • Only One Comment Per Event On the Monthly Post
  • Not more than 3 Comments Per Business/Organization Per Month


Thanks for helping us develop our Resource Round-Up!

C.I.T.Y. of Support Web Directory

C.I.T.Y. of Support has launched the C.I.T.Y. of Professionals Directory on our website. A listing in this directory is not only a fundraiser for our organization, but it is also great advertising for service providers and easy access for families as consumers. We ALL win here.

Email: hello@cityofsupport.org to learn how to be included in this new resource.

THANK YOU TO THE GENEROUS SPONSOR OF THIS MONTH'S NEWSLETTER: KIDNECTIVITY

Kidnectivity is a pediatric center where expert therapists use a playful environment to help children tap their fullest potential. In network with multiple insurance companies, all therapists are Early Intervention providers and provide clinic and home based OT and PT. In addition to therapy, we offer free screenings, group classes, specialized summer camps and individualized intensive programming. https://www.kidnectivity.org/

Want to have your business/practice/clinic/organization featured in one of newsletters? Contact us at: hello@cityofsupport.org to inquire about our limited number of advertisements and sponsorships available each month.

C.I.T.Y. of Support

Our mission is to create a dynamic community, both online and in person, that supports all families navigating the needs of their child in therapy, regardless of diagnosis.