Easter Seals Hawaii CARF Accreditation Renewed

Easter Seals Hawaii (ESH) recently underwent the important and comprehensive CARF accreditation process involving nearly every person associated within the organization – led by Melissa King-Hubert, Safety and Quality Assurance Manager and Jennifer Schemer-Lang, VP Programs and Services.

What is CARF?
CARF = Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities.

CARF is a non-profit organization that for more than 45 years developed and maintained current, field-driven standards that improve the value and responsiveness of programs and standards delivered to people in need of life enhancement services (from CARF Manual).

ESH first achieved accreditation in 2007; and every three years since. As an affiliate of Easter Seals national organization, ESH is required to pursue a third-party evaluation, and CARF is one of the accrediting bodies and with standards most relevant to the services provided by ESH.

Why is CARF accreditation important?
The CARF accreditation process is one of continuous improvement – to improve the outcomes for the organization and the persons served. The process is distinct from a compliance audit or contract monitoring. Attention to CARF standards should not be a once-every-three-year effort; rather the standards can be guidepost for what we do and how we might improve.

Most importantly, achieving CARF accreditation assures internal and external audiences or stakeholders that ESH maintains a culture of accountability AND improvement in both our business practices and services we provide.

In the fall of 2015, ESH submitted its application to continue accreditation by CARF (which would expire in May 2016). Almost immediately ESH began a “self-study” to review all program and business policies and procedures, to gather performance data, to update all records and files, and to educate staff about the Standards and the survey process.

Melissa convened multiple meetings of senior managers to review standards related to business practices. Melissa crafted a weekly “CARF Countdown” eNews to all Program Managers and Senior Staff – to help educate and inform and begin the process of gathering documentation to be submitted as part of the survey. All policies and procedures were reviewed and revised by staff in preparation for the surveyors visits.

The surveyors visited ESH April 27-29, 2016 with one administrative surveyor remaining at Green Street to review and discuss all business practices, consult with several Board members, meet with Senior Management, while the others visited program locations, reviewed records, met with families or other constituents/stakeholders, looked at vehicles, met with participants and staff, and learned about ESH.

At the exit or closing conference with all surveyors present, Senior Managers, Program Managers and others, ESH received preliminary recommendations from the surveyors.

 

As a result of this process, Easter Seals Hawaii is proud to be CARF-acredited for another 3 year term!

April Is Easter Seals Hawaii Awareness Month

2016 marks Easter Seals Hawaii 70th Anniversary of providing programs and services to generations of individuals and families in Hawaii who live with disabilities or special needs.

In honor of this momentous anniversary, April has been designated Easter Seals Hawaii Awareness Month via Proclamations sponsored by Mayor’s from Oahu, Maui, Hawaii Island, and Kauai on behalf of their respective counties.

Commemorating its 70th anniversary this year, we mark this special anniversary with a one hour prime time television special airing April 24 at 6:30p- 7:30p on KFVE channel 5.  In this documentary film directed by award-winning filmmaker, Edgy Lee, the diversity of families and the vast array of needs served by Easter Seals Hawaii over the past 70 years, is revealed.  Historical highlights and personal reflections span decades. They include stories from community supporters like Don Robbs, Danny Kaleikini, Ed Sultan and others.   Whether one is familiar with Easter Seals Hawaii services or new to learning about Autism Spectrum Disorder, Customized Employment (where businesses hire Easter Seals Hawaii clients) or Youth Enrichment services that empower young people through skill development to maximize their independence as they embark upon adulthood and build their self esteem – this is a biopic about a great legacy of a community service organization in Hawaii.  Most compelling are the real-world glimpses into the daily lives of children and their families, Hawaii families who found themselves at childbirth, unexpectedly stepping into the world of special needs.

Narrated by Danny Kaleikini, the 70th Anniversary TV Special “Easter Seals Hawaii: Serving Hawaii’s Families for 70 Years,” the documentary film takes you into a unique and different world, a reality that redefines “ohana” to include not only family members and close friends, but dedicated staff and the many volunteers whose every day jobs are to provide life-enhancing services to people with disabilities and special needs so they may achieve independent fulfilling lives.

 Our programs and services at Easter Seals Hawaii are as important and necessary today as ever, and our dedicated staff, like their predecessors, work hard every day to empower people with disabilities and special needs to achieve their goals and live independent fulfilling lives,” said Ron Brandvold, CEO of Easter Seals Hawaii. “Through a 70th anniversary TV Special and a Gala dinner event, we look forward to honoring many individuals who have helped shape our organization and to sharing our vision for providing disability services well into the future.”  Ron Brandvold, President and CEO.

WHAT:          “Easter Seals Hawaii: Serving Hawaii’s Families for 70 Years”
WHEN:          Sunday, April 24, 2016; 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
WHERE:        Aired on KFVE, Channel 5, (UHF Digital Channel 22)
INFO:             www.eastersealshawaii.org

 About Easter Seals Hawaii

Offering programs that offer a range of services on Oahu, Kauai, Maui, Lāna‘i and Hawai‘i Island, for 70 years, the organization has changed the lives of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, by providing resources and support to entire families.

Easter Seals Hawaii is the state’s largest provider of Early Intervention services for infants and toddlers and is one of the state’s largest providers of Medicaid Waiver services for adults with disabilities.

As the mission grew to include services for adults with disabilities, the organization became known as Easter Seals Hawaii, which now has 14 facilities and serves more than 2,000 individuals with disabilities every year across the Hawaiian Islands.

Easter Seals Hawaii’s programs are accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), assurance that the organization meets nationally accepted standards. For more information, visit http://www.eastersealshawaii.org.

History of Easter Seals Hawaii
In 1946, Edward and Olga Sultan founded the Sultan Foundation Nursery School, and with support from a group of business leaders and parents committed to helping children with disabilities, their vision expanded and The Easter Seal Society for Crippled Children was founded. Charter members included Dorothy Devereux, Olga Sultan, Governor John Burns, Hilo Hattie, and Judge Chuck Mau.  As the mission grew to include services for adults with disabilities, the organization became known as Easter Seals Hawaii, which now has 14 facilities and serves more than 2,000 individuals with disabilities every year across the Hawaiian Islands.

In the early days, a star-studded group of local entertainers, including Al Harrington and Danny Kaleikini, raised funds and awareness through the Easter Seals Hawaii Telethon, which also featured national stars like Arthur Godfrey, Ethel Merman, Henry Winkler and others who helped launch the early events in Hawaii.  Hosted by sports radio and TV icon, Don Robbs. Over its 70-year history, Easter Seals Hawaii has continued to raise funds by also hosting, “Taste of Honolulu” on the grounds of Honolulu Hale, a popular holiday event known as “The Gingerbread Festival,” and an annual Golf Classic, which will be held this year on September 23 at the Hawaii Prince Golf Club.

The Easter Seals Hawaii Anniversary Gala will be held on April 29, 2016 at the Hawaii State Art Museum with master chefs from


 

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Maile’s Dream Continues To Raise Awareness and Funds

 “Maile’s Dream”A CELEBRATION OF DIFFERENCES ANNUAL FAIR is a benefit for Easter Seals Hawaii and was held on March 5, 2016.  Today, a check presentation was held at Moanalua High School celebrating the event. $2,180.00 was raised this year for the Easter Seals Hawaii Early Intervention Program.

 

 

Fifteen years ago Washington Middle School adopted Maile’s Dream.  Maile was born with a very rare condition called Apert Syndrome, which is characterized by malformation of the skull, mid-face, hands and feet.  Maile has undergone numerous surgeries for her skull, ears, palate, fingers, toes and mid-face.  She’s currently an 8th grader at Kaimuki Christian School.

The objective of this Fair is to raise awareness and encourage acceptance of differences through activities and special entertainment. Maile’s mother, Cindy Ogata said, “Easter Seals’ Early Intervention Program was there to support us with physical, occupational, speech therapy and a gifted teacher to help with cognitive delays…our objective of the event is to raise awareness and encourage acceptance.”

 

 Now, Maile is a thriving and happy Freshman at Moanalua High School.  Cindy Ogata said that Maile was at first intimidated by starting at such a large school, but her ROTC advisors have also adopted “Maile’s Dream” and have encouraged her growth in High School every step of the way.  Today’s presentation was organized by her ROTC class advisors and she was joined by her classmates.

Proceeds raised through “Maile’s Dream” provides much-needed unrestricted support towards the operations of the Early Intervention Program.

If you would like to also support “Maile’s Dream” you can contact Luke Kusumoto, Sultan Program Manager at  (808) 529-1730 x1002, or email: LukeK@eastersealshawaii.org.

 

Easter Seals Hawaii TV Special on KFVE

Commemorating the 70th anniversary this year, Easter Seals Hawaii marks this special anniversary with a one hour prime time television special airing June 24 at 7:00 pm- 8:00 pm on KFVE.  This very special documentary film directed by award-winning filmmaker, Edgy Lee, highlights the diversity of families and the vast array of needs served by Easter Seals Hawaii over the past 70 years.  Historical highlights and personal reflections span decades. They include stories from community supporters like Don Robbs, Danny Kaleikini, Ed Sultan and others.

            

Narrated by Danny Kaleikini, the Easter Seals 70th Anniversary TV Special “Easter Seals Hawaii: Serving Hawaii’s Families for 70 Years” is produced by Filmworks Pacific and written by Marc Cohen & Edgy Lee.  The documentary film takes viewers into a unique and different world, a reality that redefines “ohana” to include not only family members and close friends, but the dedicated staff and many volunteers whose every day jobs are to provide life-enhancing services to people with disabilities and special needs so they may  achieve independent fulfilling lives.

Grandpa was pals with Ingram Stainback, who was the governor at the time during World War II.  They would have a cup of coffee every now and then and Governor Stainback would lament that public schools couldn’t handle crippled children, and the crippled children would end up staying in homes and families would take care of them and they never really learned how to interact in the community.

My grandfather would go home later that day and share this with his wife, my grandmother, and they came up with an idea of a school that teaches these children how to interact in society, how to stand up and walk, get them equipment that they might need and they would find braces or crutches for them and other resources.  The idea was that when you graduate from this school, you will be able to go into mainstream public school.  My grandmother became passionate about this and put together a group of people who had a lot of of energy and desire to help the community.  Through their caring and visionary efforts, The Sultan School for Early Intervention which later became Easter Seals Hawaii, was founded.   Ed Sultan III, President and Ceo, Na Hoku, Inc.

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MARK YOUR CALENDARS and TUNE IN!

WHAT:    “Easter Seals Hawaii: Serving Hawaii’s Families for 70 Years”
WHEN:    Friday, June 24, 2016; 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
WHERE:  Aired on KFVE

Mahalo to all our Gingerbread Festival Supporters

Easter Seals Hawaii’s Gingerbread Family Festival started out in 1999 as a small family-oriented event on Oahu with the goal of bringing ESH friends and families together to build gingerbread houses and make memories.  Over the next 14 years, our small festival became an increasingly popular fundraising event and expanded to Maui, Hawaii Island, and Kauai.  In 2014, the festival was attended by thousands of people statewide and featured live entertainment, photos with Santa, team competitions, and more.

Each year, the staff at Easter Seals Hawaii would so look forward to seeing the community come together to kick off the holiday season in support of our organization.  That is why it took much deliberation, consideration, and exploration of alternatives before we came to the conclusion to not have the Gingerbread Festival in 2015.  The festival has finally outgrown our staffing and funding resources and as a result, we are taking a step back to evaluate alternative ways for Easter Seals Hawaii to continue to be a part of families’ holiday traditions.

Thank you to the Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, CVS/Long’s, Zippy’s, Territorial Savings Bank, GEICO, and all the other companies that have sponsored our festival since its inception.

Thank you to all our dedicated volunteers who worked so hard to make every festival possible.

Lastly, thank you to everyone who attended the festival over the years.  We sincerely hope we were able to provide some cherished memories.  On behalf of all the staff at Easter Seals Hawaii, we wish you all a very happy and healthy holiday season.

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For information on upcoming Easter Seals Hawaii events, please visit http://www.easterseals.com/hawaii/get-involved/events/ or e-mail Shandis Ching at SChing@eastersealshawaii.org.

Santa’s New Sled – A United Airlines Jet!

Santa came to town in a BIG jet, thanks to United Airlines who threw a festive and exciting holiday party for 25 of our youth participants and their parents.photo1        photo

Presents were placed under the tree with care – something unique and personalized for each child, in the United Airlines Hanger off of Lagoon Dr.  Each child was given a passport to have stamped at activity stations as they travelled through the hanger decorated for the holidays with a North Pole, Frozen theme.  Coloring, puzzle books, ornament making/crafts, and a photo booth to take pictures with Santa rounded out the festivities.

Elsa from Frozen and several elves/ helpers joined the party, and ukulele notes rose through the air in this “only in Hawaii” experience!

The big surprise of the morning was Santa arriving on a huge Airliner that drove up to the hanger. Excitement built as the kids heard the plane getting closer and then the hanger doors opened to reveal the plane and Santa exiting the cockpit!

After each child visited with Santa they were given lunch and beverages and a large gift bag with several presents inside. United Airlines employees selected and purchased individual, personalized gifts for each child according to their age and interests!

Our kids loved Santa and the plane and the parents were all very thankful for the personalized touches and all the hard work United Airlines put into the party!  This was an event to remember!

The 15th Annual Gingerbread Family Festival is around the corner!

The 15th Annual Gingerbread Family Festival
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This year we are excited to welcome Honorary “Iron” Chef Masaharu Morimoto. He will be helping us promote this wonderful holiday tradition and is donating his Executive Chefs from Maui and Oahu to be judges at those events. Please tell all your family and friends that kit sales have begun, and are going fast! To order they can call 1-888-295-2626, or online gingerbreadhawaii.com.

SAVE THE DATES!

Saturday, December 6, Kahului, Maui
Sunday, December 7, Hilo, Hawaii
Saturday, December 13, Lihue, Kauai
Sunday, December 14, Honolulu, Oahu

This is our last big event of 2014, and we are calling for volunteers. Please consider joining the fun and supporting Easter Seals Hawaii. For more information contact Stacy Hanohano at 808-529-1711, or email shanohano@eastersealshawaii.org. MAHALO!

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