Mediation Center Pays Tribute
On the evening of April 27th, CSVMC and friends gathered to celebrate our founders. It was a special night, honoring some very phenomenal people! Thank you everyone who contributed to this special celebration. Special thanks to the Willowbrook String Band for the evening’s entertainment and Barb Skrivanek for putting it all together.
News Radio WKOK. Susan Jordan, CSVMC’s Executive Director, joined Rabbi Nina Mandel from Congregation Beth-El in Sunbury and professor Laurence Roth, Director of Jewish Studies at Susquehanna University to talk about community dialogue in times of crisis and division.
Click here to hear the podcast.
Susquehanna Valley Mediation Center will participate in initiative supporting abused, neglected children in Snyder and Union counties.
Snyder, Union counties selected for initiative supporting abused, neglected children
By Marcia Moore Aug 29, 2018 Sunbury Daily Item
Snyder County is joining Union and 12 other counties in leading the state’s initiative supporting abused and neglected children.
Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court announced Wednesday that Snyder is one of six counties selected along with seven other counties chosen last year, including Union, to participate in the State Roundtable’s Family Engagement Initiative “helping families keep children safe and in permanent living situations,” said Union-Snyder Judge Michael H. Sholley.
The roundtable is a collaborative effort among state and national court and child welfare leaders.
Court and child welfare workers from the chosen counties, which also include Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Tioga and Venango, will receive training and specialized resources from experts to improve services offered to abused and neglected children and their families by increasing family involvement in dependency cases, limiting court intervention reducing trauma and the time children are separated from loved ones.
Not only is this important for the children and their families, it results in savings of hundreds of thousands of tax dollars for state and county agencies by lessening the number of children placed in high-priced detention centers, Sholley said.
By using the local Susquehanna Valley Mediation Center, he said, some families are able to avoid court intervention.
“Identifying and involving extended family members and close friends in the lives of child welfare families is so important and many times requires the support of all local leaders within the selected counties,” said Sandy Moore, director of the Office of Children and Families in the Courts.
Dependency court is “the one court where we all work together as a team to keep families safe and together,” said Sholley.
The selection process for inclusion in the roundtable was statewide, competitive and rigorous. Counties were required to submit a letter of interest, including signatures from the lead dependency judge, the president judge, the county commissioners and the child welfare director.
Final selections were made by OCFC, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services’ Office of Children, Youth and Families and Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Max Baer.
“It’s exciting to continue working with some of Pennsylvania’s most progressive counties,” said Baer. “We have exceptional partners throughout Pennsylvania who challenge each other to improve the way we serve families and who volunteer to implement new family engagement strategies that support healthy child development.”
Eight new volunteers join mediation center.
May 30, 2018
SELINSGROVE — Central Susquehanna Valley Mediation Center has added eight new volunteer mediators to its roster following a recent 40-hour training.
From left, front row: Taishiana Tsosie, Amy Ershler, Mary Sholley, Meg Martin, Julia Snyder, Katie Scheib. Back row: Jane Brockman, Mark Morge.
CSVMC trains teens in conflict resolution.
Kalcich, 16, and 11 other members of the Teen Leadership Club, participated in a six-day peer mediation training at the Central Susquehanna Valley Mediation Center, a nonprofit group in Selinsgrove that offers conflict mediation, training and facilitation to residents and organizations in the Valley.
The students honed their mediation skills by creating scenarios of conflict and worked together to help resolve issues.
“This group of teens was thoughtful and eager to learn. I saw them grow in their skills as mediators and also in their kindness and understanding of one another,” said mediation trainer Susan Jordan. “Peer mediation training empowers students to be peacemakers, without relying on adults and other authority figures to step in. It also teachers them awareness and skills that will benefit them throughout their lives.”
Fifteen-year-old sophomore student Dara Tuttle said the training was worthwhile and taught the teen leaders skills they’ll need overseeing the REC’s after-school program when it opens early next year.
“We’ll make sure everyone is following the rules. (At the training) We learned how to handle situations like adults,” she said.
Said Kalcich, “We were taught how to see both sides. We’re not resolving the conflict for them.”
A special opening of the REC at 429 N. 8th St. will be held Wednesday from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. for neighborhood residents and another on Oct. 3 for individuals and businesses that have contributed to its development.
The community center will be open to people of all ages and will include an after-school program where the teen leaders will assist students in doing homework, providing music lessons and other activities.
Mckenna Duitch, a 16-year-old junior, said she’s excited for the REC to open. She and her peers have been planning special events, such as karaoke nights and family dinners, but said the mediation training “has prepared me the most” to be a leader.
Kalcich said he’s already put some of the skills he learned at mediation training to use.
“I’m in high school. There’s always a lot of conflict and disagreements,” he said.
Volunteer becomes licensed mediator.
SELINSGROVE — The Central Susquehanna Valley Mediation Center announces that volunteer, Jim O’Connell, recently became a nationally certified mediator.
Susan Jordan, Executive Director of CSVMC receives Florence Pyle Dedicated Service Award.
United Way lauds volunteers’ dedication, work
While speaking to the crowd of 75 during the Greater Susquehanna Valley United Way Awards Ceremony on Wednesday inside the Campus Theatre in Lewisburg, Jordan brought up the United Way’s slogan, “Living United.”
“I like to think of the work we do as the messy work of living united,” she said. “It’s not easy. Living united sounds easy but it’s hard.”
Jordan also spoke about bringing the community together to help resolve its dilemmas.
“Our community is more able to solve our problems when we’re united and we work together,”
Joanne Troutman, president and CEO of the Valley’s United Way, talked about momentum and the organization’s progress, “2016 saw us take the next step in the gradual shift to collective impact. This means pulling together a group of individuals from different sectors with the common agenda of solving specific social problems. Our hope is this will ultimately mean bigger dollars in the form of major gifts and grants to multiple partners which will support bigger solutions.”
Troutman shared a little bit about new and expanded programs to the crowd, including:
An expanded veterans fund.
Support for the Too Good for Drugs education program, bringing the program to all Northumberland schools.
Establishing a car loan program that will provide 0% car loan interest to working families under 200% of the poverty level.
Scholarships to children attending pre-K programs.
Develop of a major early childhood education pilot project.
The Lifetime of Caring Award, the event’s most prestigious award went to Gary and Sandy Sojka for their support of Evangelical Hospital and Geisinger Health System, SUNCOM Industries, and dozens of other organization.
After receiving the award, Gary Sojka spoke about the success of local communities.
“Well look around — it’s got to be very inspiring to know you are doing very well,” he said. “There are caring citizens in this community.”
“All these well intentioned volunteers and committed citizens gathered around the concept of a United Way, which is the embodiment of civic virtue. Thinking beyond your own immediate self. Thinking about a whole community, and making it a better place to live,” he said.
Other award winners included UPS as the Business of the Year, the Pat Toole Leadership Award went to Marsha Lemons and The 17th Judicial District Treatment Courts won the Mission United Award.
The United Way’s annual campaign raised $903,531.
Mediation Center Pays Tribute to Outgoing Board President, Elayne Sobel.
The Mediation’s Center Executive Director is tireless volunteer.
Lewisburg woman brings passion to volunteer work
SELINSGROVE — If you want to talk about passion and dedication, call Susan Jordan.
Jordan, executive director of the Central Susquehanna Valley Mediation Center and chairwoman of the Diversity and Inclusion Impact Council of the Greater Susquehanna Valley United Way, has passion in her heart when it comes to helping others.
The mediation center, based in Selinsgrove, is a nonprofit group that helps peope in times of conflict.
Jordan also volunteers with countless other organizations and said she loves the diversity group because it is a chance to bring people together.
“We do not try to change the minds of people,” Jordan said. “I love doing this program because it supports the community where people disagree. We try and bring people together to see the humanity in one another.”
Jordan, of Lewisburg, also said she loves helping at Diner by the River, a soup kitchen in Lewisburg.
“It’s one of those things where you can see people coming together,” she said. “Some people do not like to cook, but they come and just sit with people and talk. It is a great experience and fulfills you.”
Jordan is on the bike/pedestrian committee in Lewisburg and also volunteers at the Snyder County Jail as part of the facility’s women’s book club.
“I enjoy being there and seeing the passion these women have for good books,” she said. “It is also great to see each of them share their voices and listen to their passion for wanting to do better and do good things in the community.”
Jordan recently completed the Greater Susquehanna Valley Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Susquehanna Valley program by doing a project to raise money for a veterans memorial at the East Snyder Park.
She also is a volenteer with the Raymond B. Winter State Park, the Lewisburg Area School District Music Association, the Cub Scouts, the Public Library for Union County, Odyssey of the Mind and the Buffalo Valley Rail Trail.
Jordan was nominated for the Valley’s People Who Made a Difference in 2016, and United Way CEO Joanne Troutman said she couldn’t be happier for her.
“Susan is one of the most dedicated and amazing human beings I have ever known,” Troutman said. “She has a beautiful heart and truly wants to just do what is right for people.”
Troutman said if anyone can make a difference in the Valley, it is Jordan.
“When I think of someone who has the courage, the ability and the personality to make a deep difference in this world, it is her,” Troutman said. “This is well deserved, and I am ecstatic for her.”
When Jordan was informed she had been nominated for the recognition, she said she was grateful for the honor, but she doesn’t volunteer to attract notice.
Instead, she does it because of her passion.
“I love that, helping people connect their passion with what the community needs,” Jordan said.
“I love seeing people working together, and even if they don’t agree, I love being able to help getting people to understand one another. I love seeing the passion,” she said.