Summer 2015 Newsletter     

The Social Cog in Action

So many great things are going on for The Social Cog and our Members!

Our Second Year Was a Tremendous Success
The Social Cog welcomed new Members this Fall and, for the first time, enjoyed having a group with both new and returning Members. Throughout the year, the Members participated in activities such as Painting with a Twist, laser tag and kayaking in addition other Outings. The second year Members helped accelerate the new Members progress by being great role models.  The Members continue their weekly social coaching and in collabortion with their coaches, set individual goals for communicating with others in the group and planning their own social activities. Many of the Members have independently gotten together between the Outings and have enjoyed sporting events, birthday dinners, bowling and shopping with each other. Applications for the upcoming group that begins in September are being accepted through the end of August.  Our Clinical and Assistant Clinical Directors are busy screening new applicants and excited to meet our new incoming Members!. The application is available on our website www.thesocialcog.org/portal/become-a-member. Please tell your friends about us and follow us on facebook.

 
Member Profile
Bobby Librae
Bobby joined The Social Cog last year. He is 24 years old and has a BS in Supervision and Management from Broward College and is also a licensed Optician. Bobby likes to spend time with his Social Cog friends, go to movies, and he enjoys the beach and art. Bobby says that The Social Cog has been amazing. "I have a new outlook on life. I never thought I would have a network of friends that I can depend on. For the first time I feel like I belong and I don't know what I would have done without The Social Cog."
 

Parent Testimonial
"The Social Cog has helped Sarah tremendously! It has helped push her out of her comfort
zone and allowed her to make friends who are like her. Thank you so much for this gift! She looks forward to next year!"

-Bill & Colleen Rollins (Parents of Social Cog Member Sarah Rollins)

 

Exciting Future Plans
We are excited to announce that Natalia Vallejos has become our Assistant Clinical Director. Natalia was our very first Social Coach in 2013 and has remained an integral part of The Social Cog, volunteering her time to help train and supervise the Social Coaches last year.  Natalia is a recent graduate from Nova Southeastern University receiving her doctorate in Clinical Psychology in 2015. She will be joining Pediatric Psychology Associates for her Post-Doctoral residency this year.

Natalia Vallejos and Nick Maccarrone, our Clinical Director, have begun drafting a manual so that other communities to replicate our program. In addition we continue collecting data for conducting research into our methods and successes. The research is important as there is so little information about how to best teach social skills and develop community amongst this population.

The Social Cog was originally intended to be a two year program and that is our long-term goal. Accordingly, we will be considering candidates for graduation in May 2016. We are working on a step-down plan for our graduates that will include reduced programing and social coaching. Some Members have made great strides toward developing an independent social life and others are still working on reaching out. The Members are all moving at their own pace with a lot of encouragement and goal setting.

We are proud that we will now be able to pay our staff going forward. While The Social Cog has been an all volunteer organization for three years, in order to continue and grow our Executive Director and Clinical Directors need to be compensated. Our Board has asked us to begin charging a nominal fee to increase commitment and so that donors see clear Membership support. As of September 1, 2015, we will charge a $300 Membership fee per year. The value of the services each Member receives is many multiples of that fee.

Sustaining The Social Cog
As we all know fundraising is the way to maintain and grow a non-profit. The Social Cog participated in Give Miami Day last November and it was a great success! With your help, we achieved our goal of raising $25,000. We also held our first annual fundraiser, Night at The Museo, on April 29th at The Museo Vault in Wynwood. We netted in excess of $25,000 and raised awareness about our work amongst the 165 people who attended. Wow! Our next event, Cogtoberfest, will held in October as our kick-off for Give Miami Day. Stay tuned for details! This year Give Miami Day is November 19th and we look forward to another fundraising success with everyone's help.

Thank you to everyone who has supported our efforts. The support from our family, friends, colleagues, and others in the community who care about this population has been overwhelming and each of us at The Social Cog is sincerely grateful.

 

The Social Cog

Staff
Natalie Davis, MPT Executive Director
Nicholas Maccarrone, PsyD, Clinical Director
Natalia Vallejos, PsyD, Assistant Clinical Director
Marte Singerman, Esq., General Counsel

Advisory Board
Samantha Bratter
Dr. Judy Migoya
Thabatta Mizrahi
Allan Pekor
Lori Rabinowitz
Starr Sariego
Arthur Unger

 

 

      

The Social Cog, Inc. is a 501(c)3 Non-profit organization. All donations are tax deductible.
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