The New Canaan Advertiser: "Services for developmentally disabled now on Elm Street"
By New Canaan Advertiser on December 4, 2017 in Business, Community, News, Regional
A golden ribbon was cut to formalize the opening of STAR’s New Canaan office at 111 Elm Street Monday, Dec. 4. First Selectman Kevin Moynihan did the honors, along with former first selectman Rob Mallozzi who helped STAR find the location, state representatives, Chamber of Commerce executives, STAR participants, board members and family members.
STAR opened a New Canaan location with the specific goal to provide in-town services to New Canaan residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and their families. The new STAR site will serve as a satellite office that will bring services for all ages closer to home for those in New Canaan. It will also enhance STAR’s presence in the community, facilitate more intimate involvement through hosting special programs and activities.
The new space is located on the 2nd floor of 111 Elm Street, which is on the same level as the Town parking lot behind the building.
The New Canaan on-site and supported employment manager, Shelby Grich, said “We are very excited to be centered in a community that many of our participants call home. Our hope is to find meaningful employment options and other life-enriching opportunities that include people with I/DD right in their hometown. This office promises to be full of positive activity. STAR has always focused on building and developing long lasting relationships and we are excited for this promising new opportunity for growth.”
STAR has been generously supported by hundreds of New Canaan families and STAR’s Board of Directors currently includes three New Canaan residents, Meghan Cioffi, Kimberly Butenhoff and Joanna Galvin and a host of local alumni directors, according to STAR.
Likewise, last year STAR had over 80 individual volunteers from New Canaan as well as strong volunteer support from groups like Young Women’s League, New Canaan Newcomers, New Canaan Country School, New Canaan Mounted Troop, New Canaan Artisans, DramaRama, St. Luke’s School, St. Mark’s Church, New Canaan YMCA, New Canaan Library, SLOBS, New Canaan High School sports teams and more.
Katie Banzhaf, executive director at STAR, adds, “STAR New Canaan is our first step in an exciting new vision to bring services to people with [intellectual and developmental disabilities] and their families closer to their homes. We appreciate the enthusiastic welcome showed by the town, and we intend to make our new office a model of community-based opportunities for the people we serve.”
She said she hopes to help families coordinate services provided by other local programs at the YMCA and New Canaan Mounted Troop. She also hopes to be able to provide more workers to more local businesses.
STAR is headquartered in Norwalk.
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