Category Archives: Every Day

Special SAFER AT HOME SibNews for you

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This special issue of SibNews features WisconSibs locked down during “safer at home” orders. DOWNLOAD NOW

 

  • Hear Courtney, a teacher and a mother of 3 siblings, tell how her family has changed during the lock down.

 

  • Be inspired by Stephenie Mlodzik’s siblings revealing rainbows in the clouds.

 

 

PLUS

  • High school and college WisconSibs tell it like it is in “What Siblings Would Like Parents to Know During This Pandemic”
  • Fresh Chive Soup recipe
  • MORE

Want a full-color, printed copy sent to you or a friend? Contact us

 


COVID-19 No Match for Peeps

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COVID-19 got you down? Stuck indoors? Looking for ideas to keep the kids happy while schools are closed?

PEEPS TO THE RESCUE!!

While in-person WisconSibs events are suspended for a few weeks, the Sibs Are My Peeps Photo Challenge is going strong! Kids, adults, grandparents…ANYBODY and EVERY BODY…can join in and have fun.

HOW TO ENTER

1. Using Peeps® and a box (not to exceed 24” deep X 24” tall) create a scene that depicts “Take a Peep Around the World”, the theme of the 2020 WisconSibsSibs Are My Peeps®Photo Challenge. Take your Peeps® on a magical, marshmallowy-sweet adventure to anywhere in the world. Melt ‘em, mold ‘em, dress ‘em up. Be creative. Find ideas at: https://wisconsibs.org/what-we-offer/sibs-are-my-peeps/

NEW OPTION!  Don’t have Peeps® or a box in the house and can’t get out to get some? No problem.  Make a “flat Peep” display using paper, some crayons, and of course your imagination.  Pinterest is a good place to find Peeps coloring pages or download this one. Peeps coloring page

2. Email no more than two photos of your scene to: [email protected] Photos must be .jpg, .jpeg or .png. Your email must also include:

Names, ages and hometown/state of all who helped create the scene.

Phone number and e-mail address (not for publication).

Title of your scene. (Extra points for cleverness of course.)

2-4 sentences about your creation or its significance.

All submissions will be reviewed and five winners will be announced. Winners will be awarded  “Sibs are my Peeps” t-shirts.

“In these confusing times, its even more important to find ways to use our imaginations as an escape or respite. We hope this challenge will provide some fun for siblings and many others. We also hope to raise awareness of the many roles siblings play in our lives as we approach National Siblings Day on April 10. We especially acknowledge the often-overlooked critical roles that siblings play when one may have a disability. ” says Harriet Redman, Executive Director of WisconSibs.

The Sibs are my Peeps®” Contest welcomes friends, families, or co-workers, or any other individual or group, regardless of age or ability. No purchase is necessary to enter the contest.

QUESTION?

Do I need to be a sibling?  Nope. Anyone can enter. Any age. Any ability. Any person. Any group, business, or school. From anywhere.

Do I need to be artistic? Nope. Just be willing to have fun with it. The theme this year is “Take a Peep Around the World”.

Does it cost anything? Nope. Only cost is purchasing Peeps which are about $1.30 a package.

May I post my creation on social media? You sure can! Just tag it with #sibsaremypeeps and #wisconsibs  To officially enter the challenge, please email your 2 photos to [email protected]

Additional tags could include #covid-19nomatchformypeeps   #takeapeeparoundtheworld

How do I enter?
Go to www.wisconsibs.org/what-we-offer/sibs-are-my-peeps to get details and see examples.

  • Create your scene.
  • Take 2 photos
  • Send photos to [email protected]. Enter anytime between March 1 and April 5, 2020 (deadline extended recently). Finalists will be announced on the WisconSibs Facebook page on National Siblings Day, April 10, 2020.

#covid-19nomatchformypeeps #sibsaremypeeps   #wisconsibs  #takeapeeparoundtheworld

 


SibNews is here!

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This issue is filled with stories and information about:

  • Sibling’s Choice Awards – Siblings tell what caregivers for their sisters and brothers mean to them.
  • Upcoming Sibshop and Sib Camp dates and information
  • Why your sister may be the best thing to happen to you
  • Recipe for a quick, tasting dessert
  • Calendar of events for Dec 2019-January 2020 and beyond

To view or print, click Dec 2019-Jan 2020 SibNews

 



NOVEMBER IS FAMILY CAREGIVER MONTH

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More than 65 million people, 29% of the U.S. population, provide care for a chronically ill, disabled, or aged family member or friend during any given year and spend an average of 20 hours per week providing care for their loved one.  Family caregivers are the foundation of long-term care nationwide, exceeding Medicaid long-term care spending in all states.  National Alliance for Caregiving and Evercare. March 2009

While most siblings don’t think of themselves as caregivers for their sisters and brothers with disabilities, it is one of the many roles they play, whether they are children or adults. Sisters especially play a huge role throughout their lives in providing care, companionship, and other needs of their siblings with disabilities, sometimes even from long distance.

“My sister doesn’t live with me but we have a routine that every night I call her and read her a story,” explained Barb Wentzel in a recent Sibling Panel discussion.

Siblings also recognize and value the need for paid caregivers to provide respite for their parents who may be doing the bulk of the caregiving. “It is important that parents receive respite care so they are able to pursue things that are important to them and spend time with their other children.” stated Christiana Yablonowski in her recent Sibling’s Choice nomination to honor Todd Steven & Associates for providing care and community support for her brother. READ MORE ABOUT SIBLING’S CHOICE AWARD  WINNERS

WisconSibs, Inc. is a member of the Wisconsin Family and Caregiver Support Alliance (WFACSA) dedicated to the needs of caregivers and advocating for them.

Did you know? (facts identified in a recent survey of WI family caregivers conducted by WFACSA)

  • 73% of caregivers are not meeting their own personal needs
  • 60% are not balancing needs of their other children and family members
  • 72% of caregivers are tired/worn out a lot of the time
  • 64% social life has decreased
  • 90% indicate their emotional and/or physical health has worsened

Learn more at http://wisconsincaregiver.org/alliance

Earlier this year WI Governor Tony Evers has set up a special Caregiving Task Force to identify ways WI caregivers can be better supported. See his recent proclamation.

Wisconsin Family Caregivers!
We celebrate you. We thank you, especially the often overlooked life-long role siblings
play in the care and nurturing of their siblings with disabilities.

 


Aug-October 2019 issue of SibNews NOW available

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You’ll find all kinds of news for and about siblings of people with disabilities, like:

SibNews Aug-Oct 2019

  • Fall Sibshops starting in September
  • Eben’s story for our 20 Sibs/20 Stories series
  • Teen Sib Leadership and Summer Interns
  • Sibling’s Choice Nominations open
  • Calendar for WisconSibs
  • Golf FORE Children and Celebrate Sisterhood fundraisers
  • More

Click to view or download


International Podcast Spotlights WisconSibs

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This week Harriet had the pleasure of talking with Jim Masters, host of CUTV News, during a podcast for this international news program.

To listen, go to

https://www.blogtalkradio.com/cutvnewsradio/2019/08/01/cutv-news-spotlights-harriet-redman-of-wisconsibs

(Harriet’s words start at about 5:00)

 

 

APPLETON, WI—If you take a close look at Harriet Redman you will realize she is a woman of incredible wisdom and strength. This is first and foremost because she raised a son born in 1992 with a rare chromosomal abnormality that affected Phillip’s ability to walk, speak, and meet many developmental milestones. Harriet and her family, which included older sibling Christiana, were determined that Phillip be an involved and included member of the family and one day, while playing their special version of soccer, Christiana vocalized a very adult thought for a seven year old: “What will happen one day when you and Daddy die?”

 

It’s a question many siblings of special needs kids will have, but fear to express, and it led to the founding of the non-profit organization WisconSibs (which happened officially in 1998.) Since then, this noteworthy organization has continued to grow, launch or partner in programs, and provide the circle of support that is so vital to the siblings of children diagnosed with conditions. When a child has a mental, medical, genetic or developmental diagnosis, it disrupts the family–their time, budgets, attention, energy, sleep, careers, etc.  Siblings, although they love to help, can experience guilt or short-term resentment. With the support of an organization like WisconSibs, which provides help across Wisconsin, siblings learn to develop resiliency, natural leadership skills, and coping strategies. Most importantly, Harriet says, they realize they are not the only ones in this crazy position, and that’s utterly empowering.

 

WisconSibs provides many different programs that help children ages 6 to 12 to feel supported, talk about their roles, face doubts, and learn what to expect as both siblings grow into adults. One of those programs is Sibshop, an award-winning workshop that was first launched by Don Meyer in Seattle, Washington. They also run summer camp programs, both day and sleepover, where siblings discuss concerns and joys while having fun, engaging in recreation, and getting the respite time that is important to everyone in the family. WisconSibs also engages families in activities that help create awareness or raise funds such as the Sibs are My Peeps contest which recreates family engagement using the marshmallow candies. Recently, they began to test a new program geared to siblings from ages 3 to 5, so they can learn to understand and express what happens in their families.

 

In her radio show, Harriet is going to talk about these various programs, how and why her organization was founded, and home in on the crucial role that siblings have when someone in the family has an illness or disability. She will also stress how important it is for society and service providers to embrace the needs of the sibling (and not just the client or parents ) We salute her for her brave efforts and look forward to learning all she has to share–including how motivated people can donate to this wonderful non-profit!


Meet Jenni!

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If you saw our quarterly newsletter, SibNews July-September 2017, you met Jenni. Her older brother, Mike, has been a huge part of her life, including her career decision: special education teacher. What does she want every sibling to know? Find out Jenni’s story in this short video. Then be one of the first to subscribe [read more]

Jyll the Intern Says Goodbye

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Jyll and her brother Noah

Hi my name is Jyll Van Vooren.  I have been a WisconSib for over 5 years. Within WisconSibs I have been a counselor for SibDays of Summer and the Circles of Life Conference.

My brother is Noah Van Vooren. He is 22 years old and has Down syndrome. A couple of our favorite things to do together are taking walks, car rides with tons of singing, going to Miracle League, and watching football.  My favorite thing about Noah is his love for others and his genuine happiness that he radiates to those around him. 

In a blink of an eye the summer of being an intern for WisconSibs is wrapping up. I have learned an incredible amount in these past ten weeks. As an intern, I was able to partake in helping with fundraisers, special events, meetings, helping coordinate and run Teen Sib Leadership Day, and being an Assistant Director for the older campers at SibDays of summer. I have learned how to coordinate a fundraiser and other events with various companies to host events that benefit the WisconSib organization. Harriet has been a great role model and has taught me a great amount about nonprofit’s and how they are run. She truly is the heart of WisconSibs and it was amazing being able to learn from her.  I am extremely grateful to have been involved in WisconSibs in this unique way. It was truly a great learning experience and it was a great summer!

What’s next? – I’m returning to Concordia University of Wisconsin as a Junior, where I am focusing on Social work. I am also blessed to have a new position at school: ARD (assistant resident director) of two dorms. All of what I have learned from WisconSibs will be applied to this year of school and beyond!

Thanks to WisconSibs donors for making this internship opportunity possible. You make a big difference.


Friday: Did You See that Firework? – 4th of July

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How could we have a holiday themed week and not include 4th of July during the month of July? Well, we did include it. We wanted to end with a bang. I think we did. Along with preparations for the closing reception, fun was had. All groups created Firework Salt Art. Those projects really blew our minds. Some of the sibs tied fireworks to their lives. Their siblings with disabilities add so much color and excitement to their lives. We are glad connections like these can be made!

Before the reception, everyone had a chance to go swimming with friends one last time. Our closing reception was a smash once again and even included ice cream!   

How does the week of SibDays always go so fast? Everyone enjoyed “Every Day’s a SibDay!” Some of the favorites included swimming, Curt’s Carnival, Zoozort, and meeting new friends. We hope to see you all next year during our SibShops and SibDays!

Photos from Yesterday (Thursday!)

Zoozort came yesterday! Noelle is the creator of this fantastic organization. In this picture, she is holding the adorable wallaby, Amelia.

Meet Mimi! This is a 9-banded Armadillo. She cannot curl up into a ball, but she is a very good digger.

Cornelius the Chameleon! FYI: chameleons camouflage, not change colors and they also have individual eyes, so they can watch one side of the room while stalking something else!

Hello Igor! He is a very nice toad.

Here is a close up of Amelia the Wallaby! Amelia was my personal favorite.

A camper is showing the other campers what a hollow tortoise shell looks like! Noelle also brought an alive tortoise named Clementine:)