February Foster Parent Trainings Offered By Mountain Circle

Loving Foster Parents are needed in your area to provide warm, safe, and caring homes for underprivileged children. Mountain Circle provides training, 24/7 support, and a monthly stipend to foster families.

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Foster Parents Needed, We Support You Every Step Of The Way!

Come join us for a free orientation! We will present the details and requirements for becoming certified, answer your questions, and show you the next steps to becoming certified if you are still interested. No strings attached, and we make a great cup of coffee!

Each month, Mountain Circle offers a number of Orientations and Foster parent trainings in both Chico, Plumas/Lassen Counties, and Washoe County, NV.  Below are February’s trainings! You can RSVP by contacting your local Mountain Circle office. 

Chico Trainings:
Wednesday Feb. 10th 6p-8p: Foster Parent Orientation
Saturday Feb. 20th 10a-12p: Foster Parent Orientation
Wednesday Feb. 24th 1pm-6pm FP2 Documentation
Lassen and Plumas Counties:
Saturday Feb. 6th, 00am – 4pm: Pre-Certification Training #4 “Adoption” in Susanville
Saturday Feb. 13th, 9am – 4pm: Pre-Certification Training #4 “Adoption” in Greenville

Saturday, February 20th, 2016 from 10:00am – 3:00pm: Pre-Certification Training #2 Documentation, Policies & Procedures in the Susanville Office. (Instructor: Anna)

Saturday, February 27th, 2016 from 10:00am – 3:00pm: Pre-Certification Training #2 Documentation, Policies & Procedures in the Greenville Office. (Instructor: Anna)

Saturday, March 12th, 2016 from 10:00am – 4:00pm: Pre-Certification Training #3 Parenting a Foster Child in the Susanville Office. (Instructor: Seth)

Saturday, March 12th, 2016 from 10:00am – 4:00pm: Pre-Certification Training #3 Parenting a Foster Child in the Greenville Office. (Instructor: Anna) (Occurring Simultaneously as the SV training)

Saturday, March 19th, 2016 from 10:00am – 4:00pm: Pre-Certification Training #4 Adoption in the Susanville Office. (Instructor: Seth)

Saturday, March 26th, 2016 from 10:00am – 4:00pm: Pre-Certification Training #4 Adoption in the Greenville Office. (Instructor: Seth)

We’ll see you there!

~ The Mountain Circle Team   Toll-Free Contact:   1(844)540-8618

License to Provide Treatment Foster Care and Intensive Therapeutic Foster Care, 0-19 Yrs #325002758. Foster Care: #325002758 Adoption: #325002759 THP: #325002757  501C3 TAX I.D# 68-0062345

 

 

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January News

January Newsletter

Inside This January Issue:
  • A Sweet Adventure For a Child Who Has Been Through Too Much
  • Meet Savannah: A Former Foster Teen Joins Our Staff
  • Chico: A Community That Gives Back BIG TIME
  • Rodney: A Bears Charity Runner Who is Starting Early
  • A Reno Christmas Party on Wheels
  • January Trainings

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Our Plumas County Office: A Sweet Adventure For A Child Who Has Been Through Too Much… 

Marissa is an 11-year-old foster child that has been in care for about 7 months.  She was previously in an adoptive home, and suffered the loss of her adoptive mother last spring.  Marissa is now in a new, and very loving, foster home and recently went on a family vacation to Six Flags Discovery Anna PhotoKingdom in Vallejo, California with her foster parent and the other children in the home.  For anyone who may not know, Six Flags is an animal theme park that has amazing rides, exotic animals, and fantastic shows!  Marissa’s excitement when sharing her experience about this trip is immeasurable!  When asked what her favorite part of Six Flags was, she exclaimed,

“All of it!!!”

Marissa really loved the upside down roller coasters, and even rode on an elephant!  Until now, Marissa had not ever been to a theme park.  Lucky for her, Marissa’s foster parent greatly enjoys taking fun family vacations as often as possible.   You deserve it Marissa, and Mountain Circle is so glad to be a part of your team :)

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A Holiday Transition: Meet Savannah,  former foster teen, who has joinedSavannah the Mountain Circle (MC) staff!  Savannah is a previous participant in MC’s Transitional Housing Plus (THP) Program, and was also an employee at Mountain Circle’s Vocational Training Center, the Nu-2-U Store. We couldn’t be more proud of her!! Savannah has always been a part of our Mountain Circle Family, but she joined our Susanville office at one of the busiest times of the year…Christmas. Savannah has been phenomenal in her short 10 days working at making all of our holiday parties and plans successful! She even helped at a local Senior Home, making sock snowmen, and specifically worked one-to-one with a resident who was blind.

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She used her unique style and taste to help make this woman’s snowman a real fashionable one. At the Senior Home, she was joined by our THP house mentor Kathleen, and other THP youth.

Savannah in office

We asked Savannah a few questions regarding her new job.

1. How has your experience been in your new position?

My experience in this new position has been very well. It has been very educational and has pulled me out of my comfort zone.

2. What differences do you find between working at Nu-2-U and in the front office?

The difference that I find between the two jobs is that working in the front office is very fast paced compared to Nu-2-U. It has a lot more paperwork and independent work days.

3. Do you feel your experience in THP has prepared you for the work world?

Originally, I did not feel that THP helped me with much, but once I stayed in the program longer and aged out, I realized when I needed help and reached out. The people working for MC have so much compassion and love for the youth that are a part of it. The only thing I could suggest would be more independent living skills to better prepare youth for the real world. The program is absolutely fantastic and such an amazing opportunity for foster youth to be put back on their feet.

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Our Chico Office: The Community Gives Back BIG TIME: Barnes and Noble really kicked off the Holiday season for Mountain Circle Family Services, by donating hundreds of books to our children and several pounds of coffee to our Foster Families.

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To top that, Barnes and Noble generously opened their doors to Mountain Circle to wrap gifts for cash donations. Many of our Foster Parents and even the Chico Chapter of Delta Nu offered expertise in gift wrapping. We spent four full days at Barnes and Noble wrapping books and accessories for time-strapped holiday shoppers; it was a great way for us to give back during the season, as well.

As if that wasn’t enough, we had an amazing woman by the name of Paula Law rally friends and family to make a huge donation to the children of Mountain Circle. Law and her friends and family piled into the MC office one evening, bearing nothing but smiles and gifts for families. Mountain Circle staff stood awe-struck as people carrying piles of gifts walked in, one after another.

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These generous people filled an entire room with gifts for boys and girls of all ages. From stuffed animals to bicycles; it was truly a sight to see. That night, we met some incredible people from Paula Law’s group of friends and they made quite the impression on us here at Mountain Circle. It was a humbling experience to be in the presence of so many selfless, thoughtful people.

The outpouring of generosity from our community here in Chico, enabled us to throw our Foster Parents and their childreSantan a fun-filled Christmas Party. All children received a gift from Santa Claus himself, there was plenty of food, laughter and games of hide-and-go-seek.

It’s safe to say everyone left the party full, exhausted, and quite happy.This Holiday season has truly been one of giving and we couldn’t be more thankful for everyone’s efforts and contributions.

 

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RodneyRunning with the Bears Charity Runners Make the Difference!

Meet Rodney (on right, with his pup)~ The Rodney and Sumalee page has already fundraised $160- THANK YOU!! Rodney is committed to starting his fundraising early, in order to support Mountain Circle’s work all year around.

We asked Rodney, “What is the first step to asking for support?”

“First, I can’t say enough about how much I love RWTB, from the race event to the after party to the staff and volunteers.  This is my favorite race every year and I make sure to let my other running friends know it!

How did I go about asking my friends/supporters to donate to my page?  Well, I have been using word of mouth and Social Media (Facebook) as my way to let others know about RWTB.  I have only used Facebook to solicit donations to RWTB by making posts asking for donations to the great cause and linking to my donation page each time I make that post.

August 20th can’t get here soon enough.”

You can launch your own page RIGHT HERE, and thank you for joining our team! Together we can make a world of difference to the special children served by Mountain Circle.

CHECK OUT this short article on why runners make awesome fundraisers. Here are three tips:

1.) Ask for higher amounts. The Boston Marathon runners collected the majority of their money from donors who gave $25 to $75 or $100 to $150. But the most successful of those fund-raising runners—those who brought in more than $7,500—generated twice the number of donations in the $100 to $125 range than their peers. “If you ask for higher amounts, they will give it,” Ms. Askanase says. “Don’t ask for $25. Ask for $100. You very likely could get it.” The average online donation was $75.

2.) Start early. Runners who started raising money seven to nine months before the marathon raised higher amounts, on average, but more than 90 percent of donations came in during the four months before the marathon. Ms. Askanase recommends that runners ask their close friends and families for support first, since they’re more likely to give and donate higher amounts. Those gifts can then be used to motivate others.

3.) Hit your benchmark. To raise $3,250, the minimum requirement for the Boston Marathon, runners needed to obtain  contributions from 36 to 40 donors, on average.

Runners who raise money for charity by participating in marathons need to recruit sponsors at least four months before they race, secure commitments from 30 to 40 sponsoring donors, and ask donors for contributions in the $100 to $125 range, according to a new study.

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Our Reno Office: A Lesson in Making A Challenging Month Special For Foster Kids:

Making the Holidays special for during the Holiday season is always difficult for children in foster care, but with the help of a few huge hearts this season we were able to give our kids a Christmas that is worthy of remembering for a lifetime.

In light of giving to our foster children, we also make it a point to give to our foster parents. They work up close and very personal Reno2with each of these kids, and we really wanted to shower them with appreciation. The ladies at Talbots were kind enough to donate three HUGE gift baskets to our foster parents.

Some received new board games, movies, anything family related. Our amazing contact with Toys-4-Tots was again a great success. The Reno Rodeo held a drive this year as well and we were able to get more for the kids! As the gifts poured from Reno we got an amazing donation of books from the Chico area. The Reno office wasn’t done yet. Every person in the Reno office helped out by wrapping each and every gift. Our parents were so thankful, as many of them have up to seven kids to wrap for!

Now, what better way to celebrate another year coming and going than by food and roller skating? The Owner of Roller Kingdom was beyond giving Reno1this season. Mountain Circle’s Reno office received not just the space to host our party but the skates and part of the food and drinks for free! We were all so shocked and thankful. Each of the kids were excited to skate, eat pizza, and have fun. There were so many other parties going on and the kids made fast friends. Nothing warms a heart like watching a child whom we have accepted into our agency and homes, smile just light up with excitement and joy. This holiday season was yet again quite magical.

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THANK YOU FOR BEING A PART OF OUR TEAM!!

Please, Help Us Serve Foster Children and Families All Year Around~
Click to Donate

Non-Profit 501c3# 680062345

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Chico Trainings:
Thursday the 14th: FP1 Orientation 6-8pm
Saturday the 16th: FP2 Policy and Documentation 10am-4pm
Saturday the 23rd: FP3 Parenting Foster Child 10am-4pm
Friday the 29th: Crisis Intervention ITFC Part 1 8:30am-5:30pm
Saturday the 30th: Crisis Intervention ITFC Part 2 8:30am-5:30pm

Lassen and Plumas County Pre-Certification Trainings:
Saturday January 9th, 2016 9:00am – 3:00pm: Pre-Certification Training “Documentation, Policies & Procedures” in Susanville
Saturday January 16th, 2016 9:00am – 3:00pm: Pre-Certification Training “Documentation, Policies & Procedures” in Greenville
Saturday January 23rd, 2016 9:00am – 4:00pm: Pre-Certification Training “Parenting a Foster Child” in Susanville
Saturday January 30th, 2016 9:00am – 4:00pm: Pre-Certification Training “Parenting a Foster Child” in Greenville

Posted in adoption, chico, Foster Care, marathon, plumas county, reno, Running, susanville, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

All The News From The Front Lines!

December Newsletter

Inside This December Issue: 

  • Meet Carlos: A Mountain Circle Foster Teen Going Places!
  • A Holiday Party that Gives Back
  • Congratulations to our Christmas Card Winners!
  • 2016 Running with the Bears Race Registration is OPEN!
  • Chico Foster Parents Build Community
  • December Trainings

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Meet Carlos- A Mountain Circle Foster Teen Going Places!

Carlos has been in a foster care home for the majority of his life. He came to Mountain Circle (MC) with lots of anger, but with the support of  MC’s therapeutic services these outbursts have drastically reduced. He now has grown to understand his emotions and how to handle them appropriately- and now he is one teen that is going places!

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Recently, his MC Psych-Social Rehab Worker (PSR) through Mountain Circle has taken Carlos to a FAFSA meeting- FAFSA is Federal aid for those who may not be able to afford college. This meeting went over grants, scholarships, budgeting tips the difference between the two main colleges here in Reno, NV.

“I could not be any more impressed with Carlos than I am now, I am just super excited for him,” said Noelle.

This meeting was a huge step for Carlos.  His PSR worker Noelle has received more positive interactions with him and they are both thrilled for him to take the next few steps in becoming an adult. About the experience, Carlos says:

“I learned that not every career is right for people and sometimes you have to try different things before you find out what you want to do, but there are a lot of options out there.  I want to go to school to design clothing and Jewelry.  I am taking an art class right now, but it would be cool if I could find a class that teaches me how to design clothing and jewelry now.”

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This Runner Figured Out a Clever Way to Raise Money for Foster Children...

Will you be hosting a Holiday party? Rhea, one of the Bear’s Charity Runners, has a terrific suggestion- list your party on Evite.Com and ask your guests to donate right on their invitation  (see photo below…)
This is from Rhea’s Running with the Bears fundraising page:
I read a book a few years ago called “The Power of Habit.” It talks about the Habit Loop: Cue, Routine, Reward. I’ve used what I’ve learned from this book and the support of my friends and family to form a glorious running habit. This will be my third year doing RWTB in some form and it occurred to me… this race is now a habit. The Cue comes a few days after a long, hard race (Josie’s email to sign up now! Hurry!), the Routine is the one I’ve built over years: run because I love it, and the REWARD is bringing awareness and hopefully some $$ to an organization that does wonderful things for foster kids in the Plumas County community.”

You can donate to RHEA’s Page HERE

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Christmas Card Winners have Been Announced!!

Mountain Circle Christmas Card Contest celebrates its 10th anniversary!  Every year Mountain Circle foster children, as well as other children in the homes, are invited to participate in our Christmas card contest.  This event involves the submission of their original artwork and/or a holiday poem to be featured on our yearly Christmas cards. This year’s winners are… Kai, age 11, and Skylar, age 16. Congratulations!!

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These cards are very special and bring joy and warmth to each home they encounter.  Along with the publishing of their artwork and/or holiday poem, the winner of each category receives $25!

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Do you need a unique thank-you card for the donors to your fundraising page? Just email your address and the quantity of cards you wish to receive to alawson@mountaincircle.org by December 7th. Cards cost $1 apiece. Happy Holidays!!!

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The Running with the Bears Marathon, Half Marathon, and 10K (a fundraiser BY and FOR Mountain Circle) is 70% SOLD OUT! If you’re planning to run with us in August, register soon! ADVANCED STUDIOPHOTOGRAPHY (4)

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New Families Make New Friends~

There was much fun happening at the Mountain Circle Chico office this past Saturday as children easily outnumbered Foster Parents and friends alike.55dbb566-074e-4170-b765-4d149f6ae6c4

It was the calm before the “storm  of the holiday season,” which tends rush in; it was the Mountain Circle Foster Parent Appreciation Potluck. Delicious dishes lined the visiting room, from baked beans, sides of greens, to a beautiful mouthwatering chocolate cake made from scratch by one of our super-star Foster Parents, Renee.

Pot luck imageAll came together by the efforts of Program Director, Toni Zimmer, as she manned the Bar-B-Que that charred savory chicken, hot dogs, and hamburgers.

Sitting down to lunch offered great conversation; experienced Foster Parents, such as, Andrew and Sarah C. offered some sound advice for newly certified Parents like Dwight and Melissa F. The day was a great way to forge a support system for both Foster Parents and Foster Children; to aid in their unique experience that has brought each of them Mountain Circle.

Before lunch, many kids added to the growing number of pictures for our Christmas Card contest, with a talent that made this years’ judges job an incredibly difficult task. After sitting down to eat, the children engaged in a full-on game of tag that preceded an intense game of hide n’ go seek; needless to say, all was exhausted by the end of the potluck.

As the holidays quickly approach it is evident that Mountain Circle and its extended family have a great network of people that offer sound advice for both seasoned and brand new foster parents.
Visit www.MountainCircle.Org to find out more about becoming a foster parent!

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Check Out This Blog! Simple Ways to Give Back to Foster Children During the Holidays~ 

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DECEMBER TRAININGS

In Our Chico Mountain Circle Office: 
Dec 12th: 10am-12pm FP1 Orientation
Dec 12th: 1pm-7pm FP2 Policy, Procedure and Documentation
Dec 17th: 6pm-8pm FP Christmas Party
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! We are wrapping presents for cash donations at Barnes&Noble. We would love some help!
Anytime between 11am and 10pm on Monday Dec. 7th, Wednesday Dec. 9th, Tuesday Dec. 15th and Wednesday Dec. 16th. Contact Tyler for details! 
In Our Reno Mountain Circle Office:
December 5th: Crisis Intervention
In Our Greenville/Susanville Mountain Circle Offices:
December 5th 10-4 (Greenville) Pre-certification Training #4: “Adoption”HOLIDAY CLOSURE: MC Offices will be closed December 25th

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Final Note From the Staff of MC:  

A big congratulations to our fearless leader and Executive Director, Shauna Rossington, who has just completed her Doctorate in Business Administration.

Way to cross the finish line, Dr. Ross!! 

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Posted in adoption, chico, Foster Care, marathon, plumas county, reno, Running, susanville, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

November News from the Front Lines!

August Newsletter (9)What’s Happening at Mountain Circle and Running with the Bears! Inside the November Issue:

  • Amanda and Matthew: Taking On a 15-yr Old Foster Teen Was Not What She Expected…
  • Meet Kip: A Former Foster Child Speaks Out
  • Simple Steps to Set Up Your Charity Runner Page
  • Two Teens Save a Life
  • November Trainings

Amanda thought she just wanted to foster babies, but then she met Matthew…From Amanda:

“My experience with Matthew has been an exciting roller coaster ride.  Started out as a temporary transition, and turned into a long windy ride full of surprises.  I did not start this ride thinking I would have a fifteen-year-old male who was so much like my own family but I found that the comedy routine was well worth it.  Although we have had our ups, downs, and looped de loops, we have learned how to trust each other despite the system that causes so many stresses.  He has been an awesome young man to bond with.”

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Anna, Matthew’s MC Social Worker, had this to say, “I have been Matthew’s social worker since the middle of last December, and have really noticed a transformation, and special bond develop between he and Amanda.  Matthew has been in foster care, and in and out of group homes since he was about 7 years old.  Matthew is particularly weary of women, due to the experiences he had with his mother when he was a little boy.  She actually left him out in the woods while she would run off with boyfriends and do drugs…  I think the statement Amanda made about them trusting each other phenomenal.  As their relationship has developed, I can see that Matthew does trust her, and that is an amazing feat.

Anna

Anna

“Each month, I am required to ask the foster children how they are feeling about their placement.  In February, Matthew’s response was, “mutual.  Last month (September) it was, “content.”  That may not seem like a big deal, but to me it is.  For a child that has moved around so much, and for so long, to actually be content in his environment is a monumental feat!  October 6th, they celebrated Matthew being in the home for one year, and that is the longest placement he’s ever had. Another dynamic which makes this story unique is Amanda wanted to do foster care for infants…not teenagers, and certainly not an unruly teenage boy.  She was all set up with a crib and everything baby, and it wasn’t a big deal when she got the call for Matthew, as she said, it was just supposed to be temporary, a short-term emergency placement more or less.  Last little piece of input, is just how much I enjoy seeing Matthew and Amanda interact.  It really is a comedy show the way they tease each other back and forth.  It is heart-warming to this Social Worker to see a young man that carries so much pain and fear be able to smile and be carefree, even if it’s just for a moment.”


A Former Foster Child Becomes a Hero to Others

“I heard about Running with the Bears from my girlfriend. Her sister Nancy runs in it every year, and I wanted to donate to her Charity Runner page. My connection to foster care is that I was a foster child. My mother left me to fend for myself when I was in 9th grade. Through school I was introduced to a foster family in Klamath falls Oregon. They had three children of their own but still found a way to take me in and make my life somewhat whole again. To this day I am a part of the family. I am 52….

My life was changed by kindness and I want to do the same for children! They are the future of this great nation and we as a whole need to step up and make sure we take care of OUR kids. Anything I can do to help even one puts a great big smile on my face. I hope to attend this next years run! And will continue to support with my United Way contributions on a monthly basis, as well as support Nancy in her efforts at the run each year, it gives me great pleasure to help! Thank you very much for your dedication to children, my Hats off to you and your staff!”

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How to Become a Charity Runner? It’s Easy!

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1.) All registered runners can be Running with the Bears Charity Runners– simply activate your fundraising page: $100 raised earns a special goody bag, $500 a RWTB Sweatshirt and a ticket to the Post-Race Hoedown. Every single dollar makes a difference! How to edit or activate your fundraising page:

  • Go to www.raceplanner.com. Click on ‘Sign in to RacePlanner.’
  • Enter username (enter temporary password of your email address, password is  rwtb2016 (all lowercase)
  • Click on Fundraiser Properties to make edits

2.) Make your fundraising page your OWN with your photo and a little about yourself, then email or facebook the link to your friends. Ask them to donate $5, $20, or $26.2!  Remember: employer matching gifts count too!

3.) If you need a little support, just contact Josie
*All contributions are 100% tax deductible.

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Read More Details about Being a Charity Runner HERE.

Not a Runner? Become a Mountain Circle Sustaining Donor and you will still receive complimentary tickets to the Post-Race Hoedown, a sweatshirt, AND a RWTB Goody bag!

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Wahoo!! Jason’s Shoes Arrive!! A gift from Vicky, this year’s ‘Last to Finish.’
Vicky, What does Running with the Bears mean to you?

(1) I have friends whose license plate reads UMATTER. This is what I felt crossing the finish line…I mattered.
(2) I would like to gift my shoes to a foster teen or to one in the transition program. I would like to tell them “grit” (mental toughness and courage) will take them far.
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(3) At the end of the race, the mobile aid stations were a physical and emotional godsend. One of Mountain Circle‘s Social Workers, Curtis, (pictured below at right, with the Race Director Josie) supported me those last few miles- he even played a happy and encouraging song as I shuffled along. Please let him know “I luv him”.
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(4) The one take away my family had was that not only was RWTB a community event but we felt part of the community.
(5) Thank you for it all…
Vicky…the last runner and I matter

Two Foster Teens Save A Life! We interview their foster parents:

1.) What are some of the influences, morals, and life skills you teach the foster children in your home?

We teach the children to start believing in themselves, to work as a team, and be an active family member.  All these things play a vital role in our family.  However, first and foremost, we teach them the love of God.

2)    What kind of support does MC provide for you and your family? How does MC exceed your expectations?

Stephen and I have gotten eight years of support from Mountain Circle.  We have been in contact with some great caseworkers that over the years have not only been there for the children but also for us parents.  We have worked together hand in hand in order to help our family work for so many foster children who have come through our doors.

3)What are the positive experiences or life lessons you learned from being a foster parent with MC?

A positive life experience occurs  everyday in our lives with these wonderful children.  They have constantly given us as much as we give them.  In having these children in our home, there is a warmth and love that can be felt.

4)   Recently we heard of Joseph building a deck in your backyard, how did he get interested in learning this skill? He is so mature and doing so well in your home. What other accomplishments has he made?

_DSC6477 (2)Joe has eventually shown interests outside of the typical teen activities.  One of these activities has been woodworking and building.  This activity has been fostered by our son in law, KC Wiser, who enjoys having a helping hand.  Joe has really come out of his shell. Aaron has also been a huge help in our family business with photography. He is learning the trade and is doing very well.

5)    Heather and Megan called 911 and helped save a man’s life. Please tell us the story. They are outstanding citizens in our community for helping this elderly man who fell. How have you taught them to be such positive addition to our community?

Heather (17) and Megan (13) came upon an elderly man who needed some medical attention.  The girls had the wherewithal to call 911 and give the needed information for help to arrive.  They then both stayed with the man and comforted him until the ambulance came.  We have taught them to give back to the community in any way possible since the community has given us so much.   Do the right thing and good things will happen!

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The Blakeman’s are wonderful in so many ways. They have taught the kids how to be a positive influence in the community!  Parents are the ultimate role models for children. Every word, movement, and action has an effect. No other person or outside force has a greater influence on a child than the parent. 


MOUNTAIN CIRCLE TRAININGS

In Our Chico Office: 
FP4- Adoption Training
November 14th 10am-3pm
FP1- Orientation
November 21st 10am-noon
FP2- Policy, Procedure, Documentation
November 21st 1pm-7pm
Foster Family BBQ Potluck and “Eat Happy” Food Distribution
November 21st 11am-1pm

In Our Reno Office:

Tuesday, November 3rd 10-2

Friday, November 6th 9-12

Thursday, November 12th 2-5

Friday, November 13th 9-12

November 30th: Pizza party for all foster parents and parents in training.

In Our Mountain Circle Greenville/Susanville Offices:

Saturday, October 17th 10-3 (Susanville) Pre-certification Training #2: “Policies, Procedures and Documentation”

Saturday, October 24th 10-3 (Greenville) Pre-certification Training #2: “Policies, Procedures and Documentation”

Saturday, November 7th 10-4 (Susanville) Pre-certification Training #3: “Parenting a Foster Child”

Saturday, November 14th 10-4 (Susanville); Pre-certification Training #3: “Parenting a Foster Child

Saturday, November 21st 10-4 (Susanville) Pre-certification Training #4: “Adoption”

Saturday, December 5th 10-4 (Greenville) Pre-certification Training #4: “Adoption”
HOLIDAY CLOSURE: MC Offices will be closed November 25th-November 29th!

Posted in adoption, chico, Foster Care, plumas county, reno, Running, susanville | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Reno Office Holidays

This year our Reno office had a master plan for December: Match up Mountain Circle with other local agencies, people or organizations that wanted to do something great at the holidays.  One thing I love about our Agency is that (although the foster children remain anonymous) we invite you to get involved with what we do and where your donations or gifts are going.  When you find great people that want to help and they see what an amazing difference they can make in the lives of others, magical things happen.

THANK YOU!!!

THANK YOU!!!

Thank you doesn’t remotely sum it up.  Honestly, I don’t have adequate words to express the level of gratitude our Reno office felt towards our “Santa’s Helpers”.  Here are some glimpses into what we were able to pull together with the help of others.  One thing I can be quite frank about:  Our families and children had the best Christmas ever.  Truly.

First was the Sierra Association of Foster Families Christmas Party with the Women’s National Charity League:

Next, two of our Running with the Bears Charity Runners from the 2014 race had a vision of doing something MORE at the holidays.  In San Francisco, Courtney and Erica planned a party.  We sent them a list of children and a few items off of each child’s wish list.  They sent a link to all their friends who were then able to sign up for the gifts they wanted to purchase.  The party was a huge success!!!

Jennifer met them in Sacramento and the exchange was amazing!!!  Just overwhelming!

Next we partnered with the Toys For Tots local branch.  They allowed us to bring our children’s wish lists to the warehouse (several times) until we fulfilled as many items as we could.  Just amazing!!

We also wanted to have a foster parent holiday appreciation party with gift baskets.  Talbots donated TONS of items and created fabulous gift baskets for us.

Then the Department of Taxation donated SIX gift baskets.  Holy cow!!!

Ladies from Department of Taxation!!!

Ladies from Department of Taxation!!!

The Department of Taxation also gave us money to use which covered most of our dinner party at Roller Kingdom.

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Roller Kingdom donated their facility for two hours exclusively to our staff and families.  The only things we had to pay for were the pizza and soda.  With Department of Taxation money and a few smaller miscellaneous donations, our entire party was paid for!!!

In the end, Mountain Circle Family Services was able to give our families the BEST Christmas ever and ALL of it was done because people wanted to do something to make a difference.  It’s amazing when people come together – each doing something relatively small – to make such an ENORMOUS difference in the lives of others!!!  Our office was overrun by gifts, baskets and an amazing community feeling of giving.

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Today Decides Tomorrow

Chico State 10

By the time former foster youth are 19 years old, only 57% have received a high school diploma or GED and less than 5% of former foster youth graduate college. That just will not do!

At Mountain Circle Family Services, Inc. we focus on equipping older foster youth with the skills they will need to be productive adults in the real world. We decided to practice what we preach and take some teens to college, CSU, Chico to be exact.

Chico State 7

Because of our dedication to transitioning youth, it is exciting that colleges are starting to have the same goals-reaching out and helping former foster youth navigate the difficult process of college applications, financial aid and academic advising.

One program close to us is PATH Scholars at California State University, Chico. They were nice enough to invite our foster teens for a presentation and a campus tour.

It was an early morning, carpooling from Susanville and Greenville all they way to the big college town of Chico but our awesome foster teens made it and were excited for the day! Upon arrival to the campus the staff asked the high school students their education and career goals. One young woman is considering a career in the medical field while others expressed interest in legal and animal fields.

The presenters were able to give each student individualized attention about their potential fields and which programs would best fit their interests. Marina Fox, Foster Youth Program Coordinator, walked the students through important dates to remember when applying to college. She highlighted that in her PATH Scholars program she would help each student navigate Academic Advising, Admissions, EOP, Financial Aid, Scholarships and Housing!

After the informative session, a Chico State student took up on a tour of the campus highlighting their different departments, beautiful campus and impressive sustainable buildings. In their student WREC center, the stationary exercise bikes supply power to the building! The students were having a blast asking questions, taking selfies at landmarks and most importantly, imaging themselves as students of the university.

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Some of the students looking at graduating class’ time capsules. 

Then, we all got to go out to lunch a few blocks from campus at Franky’s.

Chico State 9

 

The Italian restaurant was kind enough to donate lunch to our group and the pizza was amazing! Everyone had a great time and the teens got some hands on experience on what college can look like for them. We also want to take them to Butte Community College and Feather River College to give them a junior college experience-and the best part about the trip!? No test at the end!

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Scheels – Thank You

Sparks, Nevada

Sparks, Nevada

My name is Jennifer. I work for Mountain Circle Family Services in Reno, NV.  Our organization serves Nevada and California with foster parents. We also have an annual event – Running with the Bears in Greenvile, CA. Continue reading

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