Nicole Kurtz, Author at Cultivate Behavioral Health & Education - ABA Therapy

Introducing Andres Sweetland: Community Outreach Coordinator in CO!

My name is Andres Sweetland, Community Outreach Coordinator for our clinic in Colorado Springs. By definition, community is a group of people who share a common place, experience, or interest. I have always felt a desire to serve on a foundational level and am inspired by the passionate personnel of Cultivate for being a focal point of awareness, and hard work that is the driving force behind behavioral change. My journey has been an ongoing experience of redefining my perception to the social and natural needs that the community in which I reside calls for.

A little bit more about me. I started my career working within the realm of environmental action, and social responsibility at the School of Global Environmental Sustainability as an Educator and Director of Outreach. Sustainability is a human and social issue as much as it is “environmental”, the human dimensions side of things is about people and how we can facilitate the success of others.

The Power in Community Outreach:

The Power in Community Outreach can be a culmination of things. Working with others, running with ideas on the next event you are hosting, and clearly being able to communicate are just small pieces that make Outreach essential in nurturing identity. At the very surface of Outreach is educating and acting as a point-person for resources such as our support groups, social groups, and ABA services that Cultivate offers in Colorado Springs.

Responsibilities vary day to day. As the focal point for families navigating autism, there are days where I am the initial point of contact to assist families in navigating our services, as well as working with our BCBAs and RBTs on creating the most seamless experience for the kiddo. The next day might bring a focused effort on or laying foundation for a drive for charity, social group, or our next big community event. Working as an Outreach coordinator is a dynamic-ever evolving process which rewards consistency.

As an Outreach Coordinator, duties can extend beyond your title and encourages you to explore a prosperous future for community, family, and the individual under a creative umbrella. One of my favorite aspects about working at Cultivate is being able to see the creativity in our social efforts. Cool Kids Club is a social group we offer which creates a space for kiddos living with autism to participate in a virtual show and tell. Exploring the passions of these children and seeing the interactions of our staff perfectly captures what it takes to be successful in Outreach. In the end, serving others around you and the community you reside is the key to successful Outreach and what this life is all about!

Tissue Paper Snail Craft

TO MAKE THIS CRAFT YOU WILL NEED

  • Tissue Paper (cut into 1 ½ inch squares)
  • White Glue
  • Pencil
  • Markers
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Wiggly Eyes
  • 1 Pipe Cleaner
  • Snail Printable

DIRECTIONS

After gathering supplies, invite kids to color the snail’s body. We chose to use a grey marker, but any bright color would be a great choice.

Next, cut out the snail’s body and shell with scissors. Tape or glue the snail’s shell to the top of the body.

Glue 2 wiggly eyes to the snail’s face, then draw a smile on the snail’s face with a black marker.

Press a piece of tissue paper around the eraser end of a pencil, squeeze a drop of glue on top of it, then press it to the snail’s shell.

If you are making this craft with a large group of kids who are sharing supplies, pour glue onto paper plates so they can simply dip their tissue paper into the glue instead. Repeat until entire circle is covered.

Paint with Ice!

If you’re looking for a fun summer activity that will cool your kids you have to try painting with ice!

What you need:

  • 1 cup of water
  • Red, yellow, green, and blue food coloring
  • Short Popsicle sticks
  • Ice cube tray

Follow these 10 Easy Step!

Pour your water into your ice cube tray evenly

Add just a tiny drop of red food coloring to four different cubes and mix well


Add just a tiny drop of yellow food coloring to four different cubes in mix well


And just a tiny drop of blue food coloring to four different cubes and mix well


Then add a tiny drop of green food coloring to four cubes and mix well


Place a short popsicle stick into beach ice cube mold

Freeze for about 4 to 6 hours or overnight


Pull on the sticks to remove from the tray


Lay old newspaper down on the table before you paint


Hold the wooden sticks to paint with

  

And the fun can begin! These run supper smoothly on the paper and the colors are great (kind of water colory). This ice painting activity will be a hit over the summer (perfect if you’re throwing a summer party).

How to Make a Whirlygig!

What You Will Need: 

• String
• A scrap of heavy recycled cardboard
• Glue stick
• Scissors
• Kitchen skewer
whirligig pattern template

How To Put It Together:

  1. Look at pattern template and choose which two patterns you’d like to use best.
  2. Glue one piece onto your recycled cardboard scrap, cut around it with the scissors, and then glue the second pattern onto the reverse.
  3. Poke two small holes in the whirligig with the kitchen skewer and thread the string through, tying in a knot once done.
  4. That’s all! Now just twirl and whirl.