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NYSID News Blog

May 17, 2017

NYSID, SEFCU Celebrate NYSID WORKS! 2 at Capital Region Miracle League in Collaborative, Community Service Effort

Category: General — NYSID @ 12:43 pm

Spring cleaning recently took on a whole new meaning, as NYSID and SEFCU beautified Jaime M. Adams Field, a ball field for individuals with disabilities, on a glorious May afternoon at The Capital Region Miracle League in East Greenbush during NYSID WORKS! 2.

Volunteers from NYSID, SEFCU and Schenectady ARC, decked out in gold shirts provided by Spectrum Designs Foundation, pose for a photo during NYSID WORKS! 2

Nearly 40 volunteers, including individuals with disabilities, lent a hand with this beautification project, in collaboration with several NYSID member agencies.

Spectrum News and CBS6 News both covered the event, and Ron Romano, NYSID president & CEO, appeared live during Spectrum News’ noon newscast.

“This day of community appreciation was our way of saying thanks and giving back, by showcasing the skills and talents of individuals with disabilities from our member agencies, and demonstrating how New York State benefits from their inclusion in our workforce,” Romano said.

With the league’s Opening Day on May 20, NYSID WORKS! 2 was both a timely community service project and a touching reminder of NYSID’s new mission: “Advancing employment and other opportunities for individuals with disabilities.”

Volunteers placed a remembrance bench and planted flowers in memory of Jaime Adams, who served as the inspiration for the Miracle League facility and was the daughter of Miracle League founder Burke Adams. Jaime Adams passed away in 2016.

Established in 2009, Jaime M. Adams Field is the first multi-sport facility in the United States designed specifically for athletes with special needs. The Field hosts baseball, football, soccer and track & field, providing a full-service athletic home for the Capital Region’s athletes with special needs.

“It means a lot to have the community come out and get involved in Jaime’s memory,” Burke Adams said. “This never could’ve happened without everyone’s help, and I’m sure Jaime’s looking down and smiling on everyone.”

Schenectady ARC contributed expertise from its horticulture program, as volunteers refreshed plantings around the Capital Region Miracle League sign on Route 151, placed and planted large flower pots near the ball field fence, and replenished the parking lot with stones.

Donna Vincent, horticulture coordinator at Schenectady Arc, described NYSID WORKS! 2 as a win-win on several notes. “We’re showing teamwork, being outside, working in the sun together with other people and helping the community,” she said. “The fact that we’re doing it with NYSID and its members and in support of athletes with disabilities makes it even better.”

Volunteers also unloaded, assembled and stained 15 picnic tables fully accessible to individuals with disabilities that were manufactured and delivered by Essex Arc/Mountain Lake Services, to replace the league’s current tables.

NYSID and SEFCU volunteers assemble 15 picnic tables fully accessible to individuals with disabilities that were delivered by Essex Arc/Mountain Lake Services

Tom Herbst, liquid investments manager at SEFCU, has been involved in the Capital Region Miracle League since its inception. He grew up with Jaime Adams and said she, her family and everyone involved in the organization would be so pleased with the outcome of NYSID WORKS! 2.

“Jaime never said a word, but she touched everyone’s hearts,” Herbst said. “The Capital Region Miracle League is an easy organization to support, and Burke and his wife are angels in and of themselves. Everybody deserves sports, and that’s what the Miracle League does. Most of the volunteers are parents of the kids, and for NYSID and SEFCU to collaborate on NYSID WORKS! 2 is amazing. They’ve really changed the face of the field, and the parents deserve this as much as the kids.”

Puzzles Bakery & Café, a Schenectady-based social enterprise that gives adults with disabilities opportunities for personal growth, as well as a source of income, social interaction, and a sense of purpose, provided food for the event.

Volunteers wore t-shirts designed by Spectrum Designs, a Long Island-based apparel customization shop that provides gainful employment and meaningful work opportunities to individuals with autism.

NYSID coordinated its first NYSID WORKS! in September 2015 to thank legislators, business and community leaders across New York State for creating employment opportunities for New Yorkers with disabilities.

Donna Witko, senior contract administration specialist at NYSID, planted flowers and spread mulch with Mike from Schenectady ARC during NYSID WORKS! 2. They loved working together to make Jaime M. Adams Field even more beautiful than before.

“Mike designed all of this, I’m under his tutelage,” Witko said. “It’s a beautiful day and we’re having a lot of fun. NYSID is used to doing these types of events, but this is one of the best events we’ve ever had.”


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