By Michelle Singh, LMSW


    Wildwood Programs and The Rudy A. Ciccotti Center (also commonly known as the Ciccotti Center) have developed a new partnership to benefit Wildwood employees and the individuals supported by Wildwood.

    The partnership was initiated from a training provided by Michelle Brown, Coordinator of Integration and Advocacy, to 20 employees of the Ciccotti Center about how to best support individuals with disabilities as they utilize the services at the center. Scott Bergen, director of the center, has a long history with Wildwood from his own father’s experiences working in one of the residences. He realized that it was not only very possible to integrate folks with different needs within the community, but also could be accomplished more seamlessly.

By Michelle A. Brown

The 4th Annual Collaborative Art Showcase was held on May 2, 2019.  This wonderful partnership between Wildwood and the Albany Barn was very successful. We had a fantastic turnout.  Artists, staff, family and community members came to view the displays.  People enjoyed the opportunity to chat with the artists and learn why and how they designed their piece.  By exploring a person’s art, we can discover what is important to them.

By Heather Giorgianni


     It is a common joke around the office that I am the “Oprah” of Wildwood.  Although I don’t go around shouting things like “You get a car!” I do, however, get to give out money to families.  I coordinate the Family Reimbursement Grant Program which is funded by OPWDD.  The grant reimburses families for purchases they make that cannot be funded by any other programs.  Wildwood receives $110,000 a year to award to families.  It may sound like a small amount of money, but in 2018 we awarded funds to over 300 individuals!  I frequently get asked how it all works.  So here are the basics: Parents or caregivers of an individual who lives with them, that is eligible for OPWDD services, are able to apply for reimbursement.  Wildwood accepts applications from families in the following nine counties:  Albany, Fulton, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Warren, and Washington.

On Friday, March 29, Wildwood Foundation, the charitable arm of Wildwood Programs, will host the organization’s Spring Gala at the Albany Capital Center. This year’s honorary chairs are Nick and Lisa Preddice and the Presenting Sponsor is Thrivent Financial/Greg and Dawn Mengel .  The Platinum Sponsors for the evening are: The Affinity Group LLC, Ayco, The BBL Family of Companies, Blue Shield of Northeastern New York, Key Bank, Powmat Ltd., SEFCU, The Massry Family, and Whiteman, Osterman, and Hanna LLP.


The event will feature an open bar, a gourmet dinner from Mazzone Catering, a silent auction and dancing to the music of Body and Soul.  Cocktail attire is preferred and complimentary valet parking is offered. Over


Proceeds from the gala, which is Wildwood’s biggest fundraiser, helps provide the very best supports to nearly 3,700 people with developmental disabilities, complex learning disabilities and autism spectrum disorders.  Since 1967 when a group of parents could not find appropriate programs for their children came together to found Wildwood, the organization has focused on supporting individuals in living lives marked by independence, productivity and fulfillment.





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