FREE Blast: July 2017

August 1, 2017 | FREE Blast

Hi all:
It’s wonderful to see how diverse the Family of FREE can be! This month we bring to you breathtaking artwork, music and performances that will inspire you all, and information about programs we are expanding on, as well a heroic tale that reminds us all that even though we have fun, we must always be safe! THANK YOU ALL FOR ANOTHER EXTRAORDINARY MONTH!
Respectfully, Christopher



FREE Theatre Panthers Win First Place
The FREE Theatre Panthers won the first place championship in the LI Day Services Game at DDI. They beat the DDI Tigers with a score of 37 to 36 in a very exciting game after an intense five minutes of overtime. Congratulations Panthers!!! Values of Integrity and Quality
Senator Brooks Presents Proclamation
New York State Senator John E. Brooks presented a proclamation to Fancy FREE and toured the unique gift shop. He plans to revisit the boutique to aid our individuals when they are out helping people in the community that he oversees. Value of Responsiveness
The FREE Players Drum Corps Receives Medals
The FREE Players Drum Corps gives special thanks to the Beats Special Needs Dance Showcase for the medals they were awarded! They were honored to be a part of the inaugural showcase. Values of Integrity and Quality
FREE Nation Take on the Altheteqs in the Playoffs
Sadly, the FREE Nation softball team lost in the playoffs to the top seeded Altheteqs by a score of 12-6. But, this hasn’t dampened their spirits, especially with the huge crowd from FREE cheering them on. It was truly a wonderful season! First and foremost, they had fun, but they also got to build on relationships and welcome new team members to the fray. FREE Nation would like to thank everyone for their commitment and dedication to the team! This was their second season and second straight trip to the playoffs. FREE Nation is looking forward to many more awesome seasons! Value of Integrity
Community Chorus Performs “When You Wish”
The Community Chorus recently put on a spectacular show, entitled “When You Wish.” The performance, held at FREE’s Old Bethpage location, was free to the public, and families and group homes were invited to attend. The Community Chorus did an excellent job at entertaining the many individuals who attended. We look forward to seeing more from the Community Chorus in the near future! Great job, guys! Values of Diversity and Quality
Meet the Artists Reception at LENZ Winery
Artists participating in FREE’s Fine Art and Art Therapy Programs, who have their works exhibited at The LENZ Winery, were honored at a Meet the Artists reception at LENZ. Attendees were able to meet the artists and hear them speak about their work. The exhibit, Ascension, runs through September 4, at the winery, which is open 7 days a week from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. All are encouraged to view the works and perhaps purchase a piece. The proceeds of sales go towards supporting the artist and his/her program. At this year’s reception alone, seven pieces of art were purchased by private collectors. Special thanks to The LENZ Winery for hosting this event. And what an amazing job our artists did for this year’s collection! We all can’t wait to see what is in store for next year!!! Values of Diversity and Quality
Wine Label Unveiling at Prime Restaurant
Prime: An American Kitchen & Bar recently held an exclusive wine dinner event with Long Island’s own LENZ Winery. Following a champagne reception, LENZ unveiled the art wine label featured on their 2016 Rosé. The art wine label is a collaboration between FREE and The LENZ Winery. Desiree, an artist supported by FREE, has her painting, Hurricane, from the esteemed Ascension 2017 collection, featured on this year’s label. Values of Diversity and Quality
Meet the Artists Reception at Johnson Controls
Johnson Controls, a global diversified, technology and multi-industrial leader serving a wide range of customers in more than 150 countries, recently unveiled the work of differently-abled artists from FREE for the first showing of what will be a permanently rotating exhibition of different artworks at their York store location in Melville, NY. The artists were honored at an installation ceremony and reception, hosted by Johnson Controls and FREE. Values of Diversity and Quality
Valued Team Member Viviane Saves Seven Lives
Recently, Viviane Victor, van driver for Rides Unlimited, had an experience that would rattle most of us. However, Viviane said it was just part of her job. The van in which Viviane was driving, while transporting seven individuals to their jobs, caught fire. Quickly reflecting on her training, she pulled the van over and got everyone out of the van safely. When Viviane was asked if she was scared, she said, “No, not until days later when I thought about it. I was only doing my job!” We want to thank Viviane for her quick responsiveness and ensuring the safety of everyone on board. The pictures shown are of Viviane receiving a big thank you from Jennifer Marzigliano, four of the seven individuals whose lives she saved, and the van she saved them from! If you see Viviane, congratulate her on a job well done! Value of Responsiveness
Workers at Tri Go-Green Participate in Photoshoot
Some of our individuals took part in a photoshoot at Tri Go-Green, where they showed off their skills by posing for the camera while working with the newly designed, environmentally-friendly cleaning products. Values of Quality and Stewardship
Stop the Bounce Introduces New Workshop Series
The first Stop the Bounce Support workshop series for those interested in becoming foster care/adoptive parents kicked off on July 25. Topics discussed included: understanding the role of a foster parent, characteristics and readiness to become a foster/adoptive parent, and attendees had an open discussion about common myths, and fears of adoption, as well as the intrinsic rewards for both parent and foster care child/adoptee. The workshops are led by a trained facilitator and include the insight provided by someone personally involved in the foster care or adoptive system. The next workshop is August 29 with the topic of Key Foster Care Parenting Skills. Value of Innovation
Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at Smile Farms at Skills Unlimited
Smile Farms, a nonprofit founded by the McCann family in 2015 dedicated to providing meaningful job opportunities for individuals with developmental disabilities, held a ribbon cutting ceremony at its newest location: Smile Farms at Skills Unlimited, Inc., in Oakdale, NY. Tours of the farm were available, hosted by the farmers. Value of Innovation