Arielle Brown was only 19 when she had her daughter Ava. She was alone, homeless and suffered from postpartum depression when she decided to walk away from the cycle of abuse she experienced growing up and in the hands of Ava’s father.
“I was in a crazy situation and I had no one to watch Ava when I had to go to court to file for an order of protection from her father,” Brown said. “It was my saving grace to have found the Maryville Crisis Nursery at the time that I did.”
Brown said Ava was very young when she learned about the Maryville Crisis Nursery. “It saved my life when I needed help,” she said. “The staff were very kind to me and Ava, there was no judgment, it is so clean and accommodating to babies.”
Brown used the Maryville Crisis Nursery twice as her daughter was growing up. She said she had no problem leaving her at the Nursery because she trusted the people there. “I feel safe and it’s totally different from anything that I have experienced after living in more than 20 transitional homes.” Brown said.
The Maryville Crisis Nursery, the only crisis nursery in Cook and Lake counties, is happy to hear success stories like Brown’s as it spreads awareness to help keep children safe.
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month and the work of the Maryville staff and programs, and the critical role they play in reducing the risk of child maltreatment are recognized.
“When you are thinking about young children and the things that they see and the things that they hear, we all know that there are times where it’s not in the best interest of the children to be around those environments,” said Amy Kendal, Maryville Crisis Nursery director. “So let them be in a place like the Crisis Nursery while the parents, guardians and other community members attend to the things that they need to do so that they can really embrace their children and move forward and be the best that they can be.”
Through its work with caregivers and the children in its care, the Maryville Crisis Nursery provides critical support to prevent the maltreatment of children. Its FY 2020 numbers further tell the story.
Child Care Services:
872 children and their families served
38,998 hours of crisis care services
5,523 healthy meals enjoyed
Helpline Services to Families in Need:
1,169 Crisis Helpline calls
12,799 Crisis Helpline minutes
1,142 Referrals to Community Resources
85.6% of parents reported a decrease in their stress level
92.3% of parents reported improvement in parenting
94.2% of parents reported a reduced risk of child maltreatment
“When put in the correct context, these numbers provide insight into the Crisis Nursery, its work and its impact on the community’s effort to reduce child maltreatment,” said Adam Avrushin, Maryville’s Department of Strategic Performance director. “We cannot only provide a few stories from caregivers about their experience with the Crisis Nursery, we can show them with the numbers that we used to measure our impact.”
The Maryville Crisis Nursery opened its doors in July 2006 and serves children ages birth to 6. It offers free year-round services 24/7 for parents experiencing an emergency or a crisis such as homelessness, domestic violence, medical issues, unemployment, poverty or parental stress. Parents or caregivers can call the 24-hour Crisis Helpline at 773-205-3637.
For more information on the Maryville Crisis Nursery, visit www.maryvilleacademy.org
Daily Herald online version (posted 04/14/21) – https://bit.ly/2Q8QtdY
The Illinois Professional Golf Association (IPGA) has selected Maryville Golf Academy Manager Juan Espejo as the 2020 Illinois PGA Distinguished Service Award winner, an award he also received in 2015. The IPGA made the announcement Tuesday, February 16.
The award honors Espejo’s leadership and humanitarian qualities, including his integrity, sportsmanship and enthusiasm for the game of golf. He has worked at the Maryville Golf Academy for 26 years and shares his love for the game with youth, ages 12 to 18, and provides golf lessons and instructions in caddying, club repair, golf ball recycling, golf facility operations and tournament management.
“It humbles me to receive this award. I view it as simply a reflection of Maryville Academy where we are working together to care for children and strengthen families,” Espejo said. “While working to be present, I am very lucky to be in the position to help a person who might just need a little smile in their lives and witness it. It’s a great feeling.”
The Maryville Golf Academy (MVA) was established in 1994 to offer the Maryville children residing at the Des Plaines campus the opportunity to work, play and practice golf at neighboring PGA-led facilities. Its players are exposed to the values and lessons inherent in the game such as respect, etiquette, honesty, perseverance, responsibility, discipline and sportsmanship.
Espejo has been involved with PGA HOPE and executes the annual IPGA/Maryville Gleason Cup Invitational. He is involved with the Western Golf Association’s Evans Scholars program and raises funds for the Evanston Par Club initiative. He is also a mentor for the WGA Caddie Program.
The 2020 Distinguished Service Award is Espejo’s fourth Illinois PGA Special Award. He is a two-time Illinois PGA Youth Player Development Award winner (1998, 1999) and is now a two-time Illinois PGA Distinguished Service Award Winner (2015, 2020). Espejo was the inaugural recipient of this award in 2015.
Mark Labiak (Ruth Lake Country Club) has been selected as the 2020 Illinois PGA Professional of the Year and the following are the 2020 Special Award winners:
- Mark Labiak, PGA (Ruth Lake Country Club) – Professional of the Year
- Chris Green, PGA (Glen View Club) – Teacher of the Year
- Mark Hirn, PGA (Bloomington Country Club) – Assistant Professional of the Year
- Dan Shelden, PGA (Ruth Lake Country Club) – Youth Player Development Award
- Vince Juarez, PGA (KemperSports) – Bill Strausbaugh Award
- Nick Papadakes, PGA (Onwentsia Club) – PGA Professional Development Award
- Connie DeMattia, PGA (Cantigny Golf) – Player Development Award
- Don Habjan, PGA (Makray Memorial Golf Club) – Bill Heald Career Achievement Award
- Ian Brown, PGA (Butterfield Country Club) – Merchandiser of the Year – Private
- Juan Espejo, PGA (Maryville Golf Academy) – Distinguished Service Award
- Jamie Nieto, PGA (The Preserve at Oak Meadows) – Deacon Palmer Award
- Mike Hainline, PGA (Odyssey Golf Foundation Golf Course) – Patriot Award
- Mike Williams, PGA (Landscapes Unlimited) – PGA Executive of the Year
“We are fortunate to have such an outstanding group of PGA Professionals that make up the Illinois PGA Section. Selecting a handful of members for these prestigious awards is never easy, but these professionals have shown extraordinary dedication to growing and improving the game of golf for everyone within the boundaries of the Section,” said Carrie Williams, executive director of the Illinois Section, in a press release. “This year’s Special Award winners exemplify all that PGA Professionals have to offer as experts in the business and game of golf.”
“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.” – Harriet Tubman
Maryville announces the promotion of two longtime members of its leadership council. Nina Aliprandi and Evelyn Smith are promoted to new associate executive directors who, in addition to running their respective programs, will now take up new leadership responsibilities with the Maryville Board of Directors, with government agencies, and with community partners. They will also lead Maryville’s initiative to assess its current organizational culture and advance diversity, equity and inclusion.
Aliprandi began her ministry at Maryville in 1986, working with the children in the homes. From 1991 through 2005, she worked as a coordinator managing shelter, diagnostic and residential programs. In 2005, Aliprandi became director of what is now called the Family Services Division and will continue this work in her new role. She has received certifications for CPR, first aid, infection control, medication education and monitoring, and crisis prevention intervention.
She earned her Bachelor of Science in Law Enforcement Administration degree from Western Illinois University and her Master of Arts Community and Family Counseling degree from Northeastern Illinois University.
Evelyn Smith began her ministry at Maryville in 1991. Smith started as a family educator, then took up the increasing responsibilities as assistant program manager, case manager, program manager and program consultant. In 2005, Smith became director of what is now called the Residential Services Division. She, too, will continue this work.
Smith earned her Bachelor of Science in Business Management degree from Southern University and her Master’s in Applied Professional Studies degree from DePaul University and her Master’s in Bible Studies degree from Moody Bible Institute.
“Evelyn and Nina are two leaders who have a dream to change the world for our children and their families. Now they will continue to reach for the stars for our children in their new positions,” said Maryville Executive Director Sr. Catherine M. Ryan, O.S.F.
In addition to their new roles as associate executive directors, Aliprandi oversees the Children’s Healthcare Center, Casa Imani, St. Monica Home and the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) programs while Smith supervises Casa Salama, St. Dominic Savio and St. Teresa of Calcutta programs.