Lynne Golembiewski, a Westmoreland Community Action Agency employee since 1993 and Head Start’s Family Advocate for our Clairview and Fort Allen Centers has been going above and beyond during the Covid-19 pandemic and has been a shining star within our program.
Since March 16th, 2020 Lynne has shown that she has a very big heart. In addition to her normal duties like updating her family’s goals, completing administrative duties, sending out Nutritional information, documenting on Child Plus, checking in daily, and keeping in regular contact with her families she has been an example of what makes WCA strong.
Lynne has been conducting her home visits by phone and reaching out to the families who she knows struggle more to offer support and make sure that they are safe and have what they need. She has secured diapers and pull-ups and has delivered them to families who were in need. She has recruited in the Fort Allen and Clairview sections of Greensburg and throughout the area where she resides. She has also picked up yard signs and delivered them to co-workers who needed them. She has maintained contact with the teachers and Aides that she works with and has shared a valuable amount of information with co-workers so that they will be able to help the families they work with as well. Lynne has been utilizing her resources and has been live messaging through Child Plus in order to keep all of her families in the loop and has been a real advocate of this process during weekly staff teleconferences. Lynne wants to make sure that all her families are being well-fed. She has advised all her families of local food banks, food pantries, free school lunch programs, and also let them know of restaurants offering free food to the community.
During this time, Lynne has also taken full advantage of the continuing education that WCA has offered and has completed 24 Child Care Education Institute (CCEI) courses. We are expecting Lynne to come out of this with her Doctorate in CCEI. What makes us most proud of Lynne is that on March 27th, a Friday night, a family notified her that they had no food and asked for help. Lynne was able to secure food through an emergency food source run by a mom of another Family Advocate and delivered that food along with other food and money to the needy family Saturday morning. Lynne, choking back tears told me how thankful and appreciative the mom was for this kind gesture. Lynne has show us that this job can be done with style and grace and that she can be extremely effective all while social distancing. By raising the bar high for others to follow and with her warm heart and compassion for all we look at Lynne Golembiewski as a true hero within our WCA Family.
Denise Eyler has been with WCA since April 2019. Before that, she has extensive experience with managing Human Resources for other large organizations including nonprofits. In her current position, she manages two staff, of which both have been here less than 4 months each. Between her and her two staff, they manage the Human Resource information and activities for 3 different groups. They include WCA which has around 210 staff, the Greensburg YMCA which has around 175 staff, and the Elliott Community Federal Credit Union which has around 20 staff.
Denise has gone above and beyond during this difficult time not only for our agency and staff but also for the organizations that we provide HR services for. She is working on rebuilding her team, training and cross training them to be able to provide seamless support for WCA, the Greensburg YMCA, and the Elliott Community Federal Credit Union. She is able to provide support for all three entities through difficult times. She is taking our HR department to a new level of service, information, and accessibility. She has provided guidance on new policies, procedures, and activities for all groups.
During this pandemic Patty Berkey, HS/EHS Training Coordinator, has done a fabulous job at ensuring the staff have distance education activities to complete while working from home. She has assisted staff in achieving their CDA, SFW, and other credentials and certificates. Using our Learning Management System she tracks staff progress to ensure they are receiving appropriate and individualized education and support. She has also assisted in developing on line training videos and virtual meetings to ensure staff can better communicate from a distance.
Her job also consists of tracking and reporting child outcomes and program progress. Patty holds School Readiness and Curriculum committee meetings twice a year. They look at child outcome data and curriculum and sets “School Readiness Goals” for the program. She ensures that the school readiness goals are aligned to the Early Learning Outcomes Framework and provides Policy Council and Board members copies of these goals and reports. She also provides the Teachers and Home Visitors copies to share with parents during home visits or conferences. She manages the curriculum, and assists on boards all new staff. She also coordinates preservice, multiple conferences, and training and professional development for HS, EHS, and Pre-K staff. Patty has been with WCA for many years and has held multiple positions.
Karen Hayden has ensured that all employees have had access to computers during this pandemic. She has spent countless hours on the phone with employees or tech support working through technology issues. She has gone out of her way to get back-up computers and wifi to employees having issues.
On a normal day Karen assists with CACFP, ChildPlus, and data entry just to mention a few. Karen ensures the central office and field staff have everything they need to do their jobs. She is always there when staff have questions or need assistance. In April, Karen celebrated 30 years with WCA Head Start.