Archived News & Events - September 2019

September 20, 2019

Merakey Participates in Hill Day 2019

Merakey staff members Jena Fisher, Kim Malayter, Jermaine Graham, and Lori Gabert participated in this year’s Hill Day in Washington, DC on September 17 and 18. Hosted by the National Council for Behavioral Health, this annual event brings more than 900 representatives from various providers across the nation to DC to meet with their legislatures to share the importance of behavioral health and substance use services to individuals, families and communities in which they govern.

Our team discussed the critical and innovative services we provide, including Mobile Assistance Transportation to individuals with substance use disorders and our Community Care Behavioral Health Center in Delaware County, PA.

Great job, team, for representing Merakey and for sharing the important work that we provide to thousands of individuals and families across the country.

Hill Day Hill Day
Hill Day Hill Day
September 20, 2019

Merakey Foundation Appreciates Their Donors

On September 18, the Merakey Foundation hosted the 2019 Donor Appreciation Cocktail Party at the Great American Pub in Conshohocken, PA. The event, attended by more than 110 contributors, was held to honor loyal and generous donors of the Foundation. The event also offered an opportunity to recognize Merakey employees who have participated in the Merakey STAR Employee Campaign, and have showed tremendous support for the Foundation by sharing their time and talent as volunteers. The Merakey Foundation is thankful to Brenda Bates, Lindy Coder, Keisha Douglas, Lisa and Mike Gavin, Jennifer LaSalle, Michael Morris, Shawn Ryan, Mark Scully – Smith, and Karen and Chad Varney for their commitment and passion to the Merakey mission. The Merakey Foundation Junior Board and Nolan – Heil Investments, the special honorees of the evening, were acknowledged for their unwavering generosity in support of Merakey’s programs which have made a real difference in the lives of the adults and children we serve.

The Merakey Foundation is grateful to those who have contributed for their benevolent support.

Donor Appreciation
Donor Appreciation Donor Appreciation
September 18, 2019

Merakey Parkside Recovery Open House

Heather, an individual receiving services at Merakey Parkside Recovery, bravely shared her incredible journey of recovery at an open house on September 13 for the new recovery and outpatient substance use disorder clinic at Temple Health – Episcopal Campus in Kensington, PA. Support, resources and guidance from the clinicians at Merakey Parkside Recovery has helped Heather to be sober for 16 months, a goal she has long fought to achieve. Attendees of the open house celebrated her recovery efforts with several rounds of applause.

Working closely with Temple Health, the new clinic provides comprehensive, one-stop outpatient care that includes intensive individual counseling and three-hour group therapy sessions, as well as traditional treatment services and resources for specialty groups and topics. Additional services provided also include pharmacotherapy treatment to address severe narcotic withdrawal symptoms, and therapeutic service options for drug-free, medication assisted, or co-occurring disorder treatments.

Located in Kensington, an area which has recently become recognized as “ground zero” for the opioid crisis, Merakey’s new clinic is collocated within Temple Health’s Crisis Response Center, which serves as a 24-hour psychiatric emergency program that treats thousands of patients for substance withdrawal, threatened or attempted suicide, and intoxication. Temple Health’s Episcopal Campus also serves as the main location for Temple University Hospital’s behavioral health services. Merakey will take referrals from both programs, while serving existing individuals in the area.

Click the following links to see coverage: NBC10 News | 6ABC News | Telemundo 62 News

Parkside Recovery Parkside Recovery Parkside Recovery Parkside Recovery
September 13, 2019

Back to School Night

The Merakey Autism Center in Philadelphia opened their doors for the 2019-2020 Back to School Night on Thursday, September 5. Throughout the night, students proudly showed their parents and siblings around their school building. In addition to meeting their child’s teachers and other staff members, parents mingled with other families to begin creating a strong parental community within the building. The Autism Center in Philadelphia is looking forward to a fantastic school year!

September 13, 2019

50th Anniversary Employee Spotlight – Robert Graziani

Robert Graziani Many employees have been with Merakey for quite a few years, and they deserve a special spotlight for all their hard work and dedication! Look for more employee spotlights in The Pulse, on digital signage, and on Facebook!

Program Instructor Robert Graziani has worked at Merakey for an incredible 28 years. “I work for Merakey to help the individuals reach their goals and to have good lives.”

Robert’s favorite memory with Merakey has been supporting the Transformation Team Project and Person-Centered Planning. He has seen for himself how these initiatives help individuals accomplish their dreams.

The core value that means the most to Robert is TRUST. He makes it his mission to assure everyone that he interacts with feels that he can be trusted with providing the best quality of care.

Thank you, Robert, for putting your heart and soul into exceptional care and services!

September 13, 2019

Celebrating Generations of Family Members & Significant Others Working at Merakey

Fink Brothers Matthew and Brian! In our continuing celebration of the 50th Anniversary, Merakey wants to recognize the generations of family members and significant others that work within our organization!

Meet brothers Matthew and Brian Fink, who both work as Certified Peer Specialists (CPS) at the Adult Outpatient location in Colmar, PA. Matthew has worked at Merakey for 14 months and Brian has worked here for 21 months.

How did they end up working together? Brian, who was always interested in helping others, applied for a CPS position in 2018 and immediately enjoyed working with the individuals in our care. When another CPS position became available, Brian encouraged his brother Matthew to apply.

The best part about working together is having someone close by who understands the daily aspects and responsibilities of the position and the organization.

September 9, 2019

For People in Recovery, it’s Tough to Find Work. New programs are helping

Recovery Through Work

In follow up to the Recovery Through Work graduation at Merakey Parkside Recovery, the Philadelphia Inquirer wrote a feature piece on a graduate of the program and Merakey’s partnership with PA CareerLink in Philadelphia.

Read the front page article here:

September 9, 2019

Direct Support Professional Recognition Week: September 8 – 14

DSP Recognition Week 2019

Merakey thanks all Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) and staff who work in direct-care positions for your continuous and tireless efforts to support the individuals we provide services for on a daily basis! Your commitment to more than 50,000 individuals and families does not go unrecognized and Merakey is extremely fortunate to have you as part of our team!

Each of you goes above and beyond your daily responsibilities to show how you embrace the Merakey mission, vision, and core values. Merakey appreciates the compassion and dedication you show to individuals in our care every single day.

Merakey also thanks PAR and Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf for recognizing the important role that Direct Support Professionals have in the lives of people with intellectual disability or autism and their families. Click here to read the 2019 DSP Recognition Week Proclamation issued by Governor Wolf.

September 9, 2019

Merakey Parkside Recovery Participates in Community Resource Fair

Enriching PhiladelphiaMerakey Parkside Recovery, Prevention Point Philadelphia, and 30 partner organizations provided free food, Narcan overdose reversal kits, Hepatitis and HIV tests, and a wide variety of services and resources from organizations across Philadelphia, at a neighborhood block party on August 28.

To learn more please visit:

September 9, 2019

50th Anniversary Employee Spotlight – Denise Mott

Denise MottMany employees have been with Merakey for quite a few years, and they deserve a special spotlight for all their hard work and dedication! Look for more employee spotlights in The Pulse, on digital signage, and on Facebook!

Residents’ Accounts Supervisor Denise Mott has worked at Merakey for an amazing 29 years. “Although I do not work directly with the individuals, I believe that I am providing them a needed service by ensuring that their finances are handled responsibly and with respect, as any of us would want if we were unable to do so ourselves.”

To her, Merakey means pride and commitment. She finds that so many Merakey employees take great pride and are very committed to their jobs. They all want what’s best for the individuals and she believes it shows throughout the entire organization.

Thank you, Denise, for putting your heart and soul into exceptional care and services!