Family Supports Newsletter
Coronavirus Update: Event Cancellations and Program Closures
Due to State mandated closures, social distancing, and the state wide curfew, in light of the recent Coronoavirus pandemic, The Arc Mercer will be suspending all social gatherings and events. This includes our support coordinator fair, census event, and all other group gatherings until further notice.
In addition, as mandated by DDD, we have suspended all of our day programs until further notice. This includes day programs, respite, OTC, the ArcAde, all recreational activities (events and evening clubs) and all transportation services.
It is our responsibility to ensure the health and safety of the consumers we serve as well as our staff. We will continue to maintain frequent contact with our families to ensure up to date information on the situation is provided. Thank you all for your cooperation and continued support of our program.
Should any questions arise, please contact our Family Supports Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 609.406.0181, ext. 112
Welcoming New Additions to Our Family Supports Team
We at The Arc Mercer have excited to announce new additions to our Family Supports Team, Sharene Salameh and Latisha Showers!
Sharene Salameh came to us from Family Services Association of Bucks County as a blended case manager with individuals 18 and older who possess mental health diagnoses and/or drug and alcohol abuse issues. She graduated from Kutztown University in May 2016 with a Bachelor's degree in Social Work. During her last year of college, she pursued an internship at Berks County Community Health Center which involved completing intakes and assessments for new clients. She then began working in case management for three years and had a caseload of 30 people. In August of 2019 she began her position as Agency Support Coordinator at The Arc Mercer. At Arc Mercer she has gained knowledge in the NJCAT reassessment process and have coordinated various necessary meetings to ensure the safety and well being of our consumers as well as staff. She continues to grow and acquire the skills she needs to complete the tasks that are given to her.
Latisha Showers joined The Arc Mercer in October 2019. Latisha has over 10 years of experience in the field of social services. After an extensive period of working in the finance industry she decided to obtain her degree in Social Science and pursue a career in social services. Since doing so, Latisha has held titles that extend from positions in leadership to Learning and Development and most recently Quality Assurance. In Latisha’s current role as Quality Assurance Support Specialist within the Family Support Department at Arc Mercer, she will be working towards updating the Therap System’s consumer base information as well as performing quality checks to assure the validity of data entry along with a multitude of other varying family support functions required according to the department’s needs.
We are grateful to have these ladies on our team and look forward to seeing all of the great things they do in their time here at The Arm Mercer!
The Health Care Center is Accepting New Patients!
We are currently accepting new patients at our Health Care Center in all departments!
The Arc Mercer is proud to have the one and only Comprehensive Healthcare Center for individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities in New Jersey. Our primary care physicians coordinate care with multiple specialists in treating differently abled individuals who have more complex health concerns in one convenient space.
We currently host Family Practice Physicians, Internal Medicine Doctors, Psychiatrists, Nurse Practitioners, Podiatrists and Licensed Counselors to ensure that our patients do not have to worry with the hassle and anxiety of traveling to multiple locations to receive the health care they require. Our staff is specially trained to understand and assess their treatment of persons with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities which means patients can be assured that they will receive fair and nondiscriminatory treatment.
The Arc Mercer Health Care Center has been proven to decrease unplanned hospital admissions and behavioral visits to the emergency room for its patients. With the coordination of our provided health care, medication errors have been reduced. Our mission at the Health Care Center is to provide care in a relaxed, comfortable environment which helps individuals feel at ease.
Family Spotlight: Hector’s Story
At The Arc Mercer, we provide countless services for our consumers, and while we are able to see every day how our services have a positive impact on their lives, we often forget that these services are also impactful to the families of our consumers. Jean Miller, Director of Family Support recently had an opportunity to speak to the mother of one of our consumers, Hector Melendez and hear first-hand about how grateful she and her family are for the supports we provide for her son:
“I am very happy with the services Arc Mercer provides. Monica Quaste, Licensed Therapist, is our angel and helps Hector out so much. He is doing great at program and they are always there for us.” In particular, she mentioned Director of Day /Behavioral Services Chris Hargrave, “Chris has worked with Hector for 4-5 years and has done so much to support him. Chris would come to our house and help. I am so blessed for Chris to be the Director of the program. All the staff at Arc Mercer care for Hector and know how much he means to me.”
Hector joined The Arc Mercer in January 2014. When he started, Hector required lots of support to help manage his behaviors. At first, Hector was not able to fully participate in program activities due to behavioral challenges. In October 2015, Hector’s team recommended that he would transfer to our Special Needs Program so we could better support his behavioral needs. The transfer proved to be very successful! Through help from Arc Mercer staff and behavioral supports, Hector has been able to make significant improvements. Hector’s behaviors no longer prevent him from participating in program activities, he is actively involved in our various enclaves and participates fully in community activities. His staff describe him as happy and very helpful when at program. The Arc Mercer is very proud of Hector and look forward to his future accomplishments!