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Upcoming Events & Important Dates


CSN Closed Dates - Monday, January 1st

- Monday, January, 15th

- Friday, March 29th


For more information about our upcoming events, visit us on social media or at VisitCSN.org/events

 

Another Year Come and Gone


Another year has come to an end. We finished out 2023 with a holiday party full of laughs, crafts, games, and snacks. Our clients bring so much joy each day - their positive energy and excitement will put a smile on anyone's face. It was a wonderful year and we can’t thank you enough for sharing your joy and talents with us each day. We look forward to a new year full of more laughs and fun.


The community we are apart of is amazing. We wouldn’t be here without our clients or the support of their families and teams, our volunteers and board members, our clients employers, and the many other individuals and businesses that we partner with. When we come together as a community to work towards a similar goal, change can happen. With your continued support, we will keep working on our mission to support individuals with developmental disabilities and increase their confidence and competence to fully participate in this community. 


Through generous donations and all of you joining us for various events, such as our Chipotle Fundraiser and Virtual Silent Auction, we continue to build and expand our programming. We love the work that we do and can’t thank you all enough for your continued support. We look forward to continuing to grow our community and collaborating with you all in 2024. 


From our CSN family to yours, we hope you have a wonderful year ahead and look forward to exciting things to come.Thank you for all of your care and support ofCSN and our clients!

 

Enrichment:

A Year of Fun

From parties to art activities to science activities and more, our 2023 was full of creativity, laughs, and fun! Here are some of the activities from the past year that stand out in our minds.


An Earth for Earth Day

To celebrate Earth Day, we created a beautiful Earth using paint and paper plates. We cut a heart in the center and wove red yarn across it to express the love we have for our planet.


Coffee Filter Flowers

With a few simple items - coffee filters, watercolors, pipe cleaners, and tape we created bright, cheerful

flowers. We had a great time creating these and hope they brightened up someone's day.


Valentine Mosaics

Does anyone else love mosaics? To create imitation mosaic hearts, we cut a clear laminated sheet into the shape of  a heart and used glue tinted with black paint to create the mosaic look. We then used permanent markers  to add color and our own unique touches!


Homemade Journals

Everyone needs a way to express themselves. We made our own artwork on 2 pieces of paper and used that as the front and back cover of homemade journals. The homemade covers and personalized titles on front made these the perfect place to write our thoughts and ideas.


Galaxy Jars

Our Galaxy Jars were out of this world! By combining paint, water, glitter, and cotton balls in a jar, we were able to create a variety of awesome “galaxies” to explore!


Ornaments

This holiday season, we had a blast creating festive holiday art. One of our favorites were plastic ball ornaments with paint coating the inside. We added our names to the outside which added a personal touch!


Disability Pride Festival

In July, we celebrated Disability Pride Month. We talked about Disability Pride and had a Disability Pride Festival at the end of the month. During the Festival, we made the disability pride flag with tissue paper and discussed the many amazing things about each one of us. It was so much fun! 

 

Vocational:

New Employer Alert!


Here at CSN we strive daily to work towards our mission to provide comprehensive day-time services to individuals with developmental disabilities. It wouldn’t be possible for us to accomplish these goals without the wonderful employers that we partner with here in Dane County to employ our clients. 


Serenity Pet Spa is an award winning, leading pet spa with two locations in Madison. Lis Johnston, the founder and internationally recognized Certified Master Groomer, and her team are committed to providing world-class grooming for their customers. Does your dog need a bath? A 

trim? A full haircut? Serenity Pet Spa offers a wide range of services and add-ons to meet all of your furry friends’ grooming needs.


A few months ago, Serenity Pet Spa hired a CSN client as a dog bather at their spa on Madison’s west side. It has been a wonderful experience partnering with Serenity Pet Spa as our client is thriving in his dream job. All of the staff are friendly and truly care about the work that they do. They have also embraced their new coworker, providing a very positive and supportive environment.


Thank you to everyone at Serenity Pet Spa for their support! We look forward to continuing this partnership for years to come.

 

Wellness:

Expressing Ourselves


There are so many things that we schedule into our days that it’s easy to get bogged down by thoughts of what’s to come, what other people need, and how to accomplish everything in our short 24 hour day. In order to stay healthy and able to accomplish everything on our to do list, it is necessary to take some time for ourselves. Expressing our thoughts, ideas, and feelings can help us remember our priorities and work through everything happening in our lives.


One great way to express our thoughts is through writing. Expressive writing is a technique to honestly reflect on our experiences. The idea is to put pen to paper and write - no need to worry about spelling or grammar, no need to edit or judge what you write. This is not for anyone else to read or judge, it is just you and your thoughts on paper, expressing how you feel in that moment about whatever comes to mind. Once you’re finished, you can put it away to read another day or destroy it. 


Give it a try and see if expressing yourself through writing, or in another way of your choosing, helps you through whatever you may be experiencing.

 

Share Your Time With Us


Volunteers Make a Difference

We have some amazing volunteers here at CSN! Each month, our volunteers come to hang out, visit, and share their gifts and talents with us - it’s amazing. We are so grateful for their time and the thoughtfulness they bring each visit. 


Last month, one of our talented volunteers used her photography skills to snap professional photos of each individual. She then helped us use our own creative skills to decorate frames to put our photos in. They were so personal and turned out great.


One of our other volunteers is an amazing baker and brings cookies in for us to decorate. We talk about the baking process and make our own frosting to create fun, delicious treats. We can’t get enough of them!


Another volunteer has helped us to express ourselves through poetry. Her ability to listen and help us express ourselves through topics we are interested in is truly special.


Thank you all for the time and the kindness you bring with you to CSN!


Interested in becoming a volunteer? Email us at Connect@VisitCSN.org.



Join Our Internship Program

As an intern at CSN, you will collaborate with veteran staff who have worked with adults with developmental disabilities for 10+ years to provide enriching activities to individuals of varying ability levels. You will receive training on how to communicate with each individual and be trained on ways to adapt activities for all individuals to participate and succeed. The activities provided promote physical, cognitive, and social engagement as well as help our clients develop skills to fully participate in this community. 


Through this internship, you will gain an understanding of and share feelings with people who have different abilities. This process will help you to understand all people better, including yourself. Additionally, you will learn new ways to communicate, about teamwork, and develop a deeper appreciation for patience and considering the perspectives of others which can transfer to your everyday personal and professional life.


Are you or someone you know looking for a rewarding internship opportunity? Interested parties are invited to email us at Connect@VisitCSN.org to learn more and to find out how to apply.

 

Winter Recipes

Chex Party Mix

Ingredients

  • 3 C EACH Corn Chex, Rice Chex, & Wheat Chex Cereal

  • 1 C Mixed Nuts

  • 2 C Pretzels

  • 6 Tbsp Butter

  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

  • 1 ½ tsp Season Salt

  • ¾ tsp Garlic Powder

  • ¾ tsp Onion Powder

Directions

  1. In a large microwavable bowl, mix cereal, nuts, & pretzels. Set aside.

  2. In a small microwavable bowl, microwave butter until melted, about 40 seconds.

  3. Stir remaining ingredients into butter.

  4. Pour butter mixture over cereal mixture and stir until coated evenly.

  5. Cook in the air fryer at 350 degrees for 5 minutes - shaking the basket half way through cooking.

  6. Spread on paper towels to cool.

  7. Enjoy!

Greek Deli Kabobs

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Part Skim Mozzarella Cheese (cut into 48 cubes.

  • 24 Fresh Broccoli Florets (about 10 oz)

  • ½ C Greek Vinaigrette

  • 24 Slices Hard Salami

  • 2 Jars (7.5 oz each) Roasted Sweet Red Peppers (drained and cut into 24 strips)

Directions

  1. In a shallow dish combine cheese, broccoli, & vinaigrette. Stir to coat and refrigerate for 1 hour (or overnight).

  2. Drain cheese & broccoli, reserving vinaigrette.

  3. On 25 appetizer skewers alternately thread cheese, salami, broccoli, and peppers.

  4. Brush with reserved vinaigrette.

  5. Enjoy!


Air Fryer Chicken Parmesan Meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Ground Chicken Breast

  • 1 C Breadcrumbs

  • 1 Egg

  • ½ C Parmesan Cheese

  • 1 Tbsp Italian Seasoning

  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper

  • ¾ C Marinara Sauce

  • ½ C Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

Directions

  1. Combine chicken, breadcrumbs, egg, parmesan cheese, & seasoning in a bowl and mix until well combined.

  2. Prepare air fryer basket with cooking spray.

  3. Roll the chicken mixture into 9, 2” meatballs.

  4. Place the meatballs in a single layer in the prepared air fryer basket, making sure to leave room between meatballs.

  5. Cook at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 minutes, flipping the meatballs halfway through.

  6. Top each meatball with marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese and cook for an additional 2 minutes.

  7. Serve over noodles, on a bun, or as an appetizer.

  8. Enjoy!

 

How Can You Help?

Ways to Donate

  • Financial Donation - Financial donations are always appreciated! Checks can be mailed to CSN or donate directly on our website - VisitCSN.org

  • ShopRaise - Shop online using ShopRaise and your purchases from eligible retailers will help support CSN

  • Volunteer - Share a hobby or talent with us. We would love to learn something new from you!

  • Supplies - Contact us if you have supplies to donate and we’ll let you know what we are in need of.

  • Recyclables - Drop off your used markers, pens, glue sticks, mechanical pencils, highlighters, and watercolor containers to CSN. We’ll collect them and recycle them.

Hire Us!

Hire CSN clients to work at your company. Email Info@VisitCSN.org for more information.


Host an Art Gallery Event

Learn about our clients and their lives through art. Host our art gallery at your business for a month and experience their stories and talents. Email Info@VisitCSN.org for more information.



View Past Newsletters

CSN's Fall 2023 Newsletter
.pdf
Download PDF • 4.72MB
CSN's Summer 2023 Newsletter
.pdf
Download PDF • 3.47MB
CSN's Spring 2023 Newsletter
.pdf
Download PDF • 2.91MB

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Upcoming Events & Important Dates


Events Chipotle Fundraiser For CSN

Tuesday, November 7th

4:00 - 8:00 PM

See flyer below for full details


Virtual Silent Auction

December 7th

See flyer below for more details


CSN Closed Dates - Thursday, November 23rd

- Friday, November, 24th

- Monday, December 25th

- Tuesday, December 26th

- Wednesday, December 27th

- Thursday, December 28th

- Friday, December 29th

- Monday, January 1st, 2024


For more information about our upcoming events, visit us on social media or at VisitCSN.org

 

A Message from Our New Executive Director: Caroline Bowers


Dear Friends and Supporters of Community Support Network,

I am thrilled to introduce myself as the new Executive Director of Community Support Network, Inc. It is an absolute privilege to step into this role and join the CSN family. I want to extend my heartfelt gratitude to all of you for the warm welcome and support I have received since my arrival just last month.


As most of you know, CSN has undergone a lot of changes in the last few years in an effort to continue our mission despite reduced funding resources and the challenges of the pandemic. As the new Executive Director, my primary focus will be on driving fundraising efforts and strategic planning to enhance the impact of CSN’s mission. I am committed to guiding CSN’s growth trajectory, allowing the organization to better serve and uplift individuals with developmental disabilities.


I look forward to collaborating with each of you—our supporters, volunteers, staff, and the individuals and families we serve. Together, we can continue to make a meaningful impact and bring about positive change in the lives of those we support.


Thank you for entrusting me with this important role, and I am excited to embark on this journey with all of you. I am always seeking opportunities for collaboration with our supporters and the philanthropic community so that CSN can continue to offer these needed services. Please feel free to reach out to me anytime with your thoughts, ideas, and suggestions!


With gratitude and determination,


Caroline Bowers

Executive Director

Community Support Network, Inc.

caroline.bowers@visitcsn.org

visitcsn.org/donate


Caroline has spent more than 15 years working in nonprofit leadership roles in Tennessee, Texas, and

Wisconsin. She is married with two children. She has two spunky kittens and way too many houseplants. When Caroline’s not focusing on work and family, you’ll often find her painting, enjoying trivia, watching scary movies, or catching live music events.


Welcome to the CSN family Caroline!

 

Vocational:

Employer Spotlight

Waisman

The Waisman Center at the University of Wisconsin - Madison conducts research, provides training, provides services, and participates in outreach activities to advance our knowledge about human development, developmental disabilities, and neurodegenerative diseases. The services that they offer include autism treatment programs, clinical care, community outreach, and the Waisman Early Childhood Program.


In 2010, the Waisman Center and CSN began our professional relationship. Over the years, the Waisman Center has employed several CSN clients to assist with sanitizing toys and work spaces as well as providing dishwashing services.


Currently, Megan is employed at the Waisman Early Childhood Program (WECP). WECP has been a program of the Waisman Center since 1979. This program offers early education and care to children ages one to six. They provide an environment that is focused on inclusivity and universal design for all children - specializing in supporting children with disabilities.


Megan began her journey with WECP long before she became an employee there. She attended WECP as a child and began working there in adulthood. She has a strong, lasting relationship with the program and some of the staff who were once her teachers. Megan is in a very special position to not only provide her services to the program that watched her grow, but also to act as a role model to each new child who joins the program.


We truly appreciate our relationship with WECP and the work that they do to ensure children of all ability levels are encouraged to learn and grow together. Thank you for all that you do!


Zuzu Cafe

Zuzu Cafe is located in the Greenbush-Vilas neighborhood in Madison and offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner; along with daily specials, baked goods made fresh on-site, fair trade coffee, and ice cream. Located across the street from the Henry Vilas Zoo, this is a great stop to refuel after visiting the animals.


Zuzu Cafe has more to offer than just great food. With a cozy inside and year around patio dining - including igloos for the colder months, you can’t go wrong! For entertainment, they offer a sandbox for the kids and occasional live music. Check out their facebook page to find out when their next live music performance will be.


Zuzu Cafe and CSN began working together in 2022. Zuzu Cafe employs a CSN client who provides dishwashing and cleaning services. Everyone at Zuzu Cafe is welcoming and the staff seem to work together like a well oiled machine.


This neighborhood cafe is a special place where people come to enjoy the food,atmosphere, and maybe even run into a neighbor or friend that they haven’t seen in a while. We appreciate our partnership with this great local business and look forward to continuing this relationship for years to come.



Are you or someone you know currently hiring?

Become an Employer with CSN


When you become an employer with CSN


EVERYBODY WINS

People win by gaining access to meaningful, income producing employment.

Employers win by gaining productive, qualified employees.

Communities win by gaining more contributing, tax paying citizens.


Our Services

  • We learn about your business needs

  • We help you fill positions

  • We provide ongoing job coaching

Learn More

VisitCSN.org

(608) 620-3010

 

Enrichment:

Expressive Writing


Last month, we started a new Expressive Writing group with Ellyn, one of our volunteers. During this group, we read a poem and paired it with a writing activity.


To prepare for this new group activity, we created our very own homemade journals. First we created colorful artwork using paint and cardstock. These became our front and back covers. Once dry, we cut the front cover and 10 pieces of printer paper to be 2 inches shorter in length than the back cover. We bound the books together with a few staples and colorful duct tape and then created a latch to hold it shut. To make the latch, we folded the 2 inches of excess back cover over the front cover and sealed it with velcro. We can’t wait to use these special journals to write our thoughts and ideas and to see where this group takes us. Thanks for joining us and putting together this fun activity, Ellyn!


Interested in joining our awesome team of volunteers? Contact us at Info@VisitCSN.org

 

Wellness:

Keep on Moving


As the days get shorter and the weather cools down, it can be difficult to get motivated and find ways to stay active. If you find yourself feeling lazy on the couch, watching tv to end your day, consider getting up and moving through some simple exercises as you watch your favorite show. Here’s an example of a simple exercise routine to do while you watch tv:


Exercise Routine

1. 10 Jumping Jacks

2. 10 Squats

3. Jog in Place - 30 seconds

4. 10 Push Ups

Repeat 3 times

Modified Routine

1. 10 Modified Jumping Jacks - Step one foot out to the side and raise both arms overhead, repeat on other side. Do 10 times.

2. 10 Sit to Stand Squats - start seated in a chair and stand up. Sit back down and repeat 10 times.

3. High Knees in Place - 30 seconds

4. 10 Wall or Knee Push Ups

Repeat 3 times

 

Fall Recipes

Cherry Tomato Caprese Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 C Packed Fresh Basil Leaves

  • ¼ C Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • 2 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar

  • ½ tsp Salt

  • 1 tsp Minced Garlic

  • 3 C Cherry Tomatoes, Halved

  • 1 - 8 oz Container Fresh Mozzarella Cheese Pearls


Directions

  1. Place basil, oil, vinegar, salt, and garlic in a food processor or blender and process until combined.

  2. Combine tomatoes and mozzarella in a large bowl.

  3. Pour dressing over tomato/mozzarella mixture and toss to coat.

  4. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.

  5. Garnish with chopped basil leaves before serving if desired.

  6. Enjoy!

Greek Salad Pinwheels

Ingredients

  • 8 oz Feta Cheese

  • ½ C Plain Greek Yogurt

  • 2 tsp Red Wine Vinegar

  • 2 tsp Minced Garlic

  • ⅛ tsp Black Pepper

  • ¼ tsp Dried Oregano

  • ¾ C Finely Diced Cucumber

  • ½ C Diced Kalamata Olives

  • ¼ Red Onion, Finely Diced

  • 1 Tbsp Parsley

  • 3 Roma Tomatoes, Seeded & Diced

  • 4 - 12 in Spinach Tortillas

Directions

  1. In a food processor combine feta cheese, greek yogurt, red wine vinegar, minced garlic, black pepper, and oregano and blend until mixed and creamy.

  2. In a medium sized bowl combine cucumber, olives, onion, parsley, & tomatoes.

  3. Warm tortillas slightly in the microwave, just enough to make them pliable (about 15 - 20 seconds).

  4. Lay one tortilla on a flat surface and spread ¼ of the feta mixture evenly on the tortilla, leaving about ⅓ inch around the edges, then scoop ¼ of the cucumber mixture onto the feta mixture and spread evenly.

  5. Roll tortilla into a log shape and wrap tightly with plastic wrap, repeat with remaining ingredients and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

  6. Remove from the refrigerator, unwrap, and slice into even pieces.

  7. Enjoy!


Slow Cooker Peach Cobbler

Ingredients

  • 4 C Frozen Sliced Peaches (Thawed & Drained)

  • ¾ C Brown Sugar

  • 2 tsp Cinnamon

  • 1 (15 oz) Box Yellow Cake Mix

  • ½ C Butter


Directions

  1. In a bowl, mix together peaches, cinnamon, & brown sugar until all peaches are coated.

  2. Put peaches into the slow cooker.

  3. Sprinkle yellow cake mix over the peaches, use the entire box and cover all of the peaches (make sure you are using the dry cake mix - do not follow the instructions on the box).

  4. Slice the butter into small pieces and lay them over the cake mix, the entire dry cake mix should be covered in sliced butter.

  5. Cook on high for 4 hours or until cake turns golden brown.

  6. Serve warm and enjoy!

 

How Can You Help?

New way to donate with ShopRaise!

As some of you may know, Amazon shut down its AmazonSmile donation program in February of 2023. However, we are excited to have found a new way our community can support CSN through their online purchases, ShopRaise! The program is free, you do not pay any more for the items you buy, and you get access to all the best coupons and deals.


Please help us support and promote our program by doing these 4 simple things:

  • Click this link or go to shopraise.com/support/209998 to get the ShopRaise app.

  • Add the ShopRaise extension to your internet browser to easily have your purchases at eligible retailers support CSN.

  • Share with your friends and family using the tools in the mobile app.

  • Shop online to support and help us reach our fundraising goals.

With your help, we can make a difference in the lives of the community we serve!


Other Ways to Donate

  • Financial Donation - Financial donations are always appreciated! Checks can be mailed to CSN or donate directly on our website - VisitCSN.org

  • Volunteer - Share a hobby or talent with us. We would love to learn something new from you!

  • Supplies - Contact us if you have supplies to donate and we’ll let you know what we are in need of.

  • Recyclables - Drop off your used markers, pens, glue sticks, mechanical pencils, highlighters, and watercolor containers to CSN. We’ll collect them and recycle them.

Hire Us!

Hire CSN clients to work at your company. Email Info@VisitCSN.org for more information.


Host an Art Gallery Event

Learn about our clients and their lives through art. Host our art gallery at your business for a month and experience their stories and talents. Email Info@VisitCSN.org for more information.


Join Us for our Upcoming Events


















View Past Newsletters

CSN's Summer 2023 Newsletter
.pdf
Download PDF • 3.47MB
CSN's Spring 2023 Newsletter
.pdf
Download PDF • 2.91MB
CSN's Winter 2023 Newsletter
.pdf
Download PDF • 6.71MB

48 views0 comments
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