Message from the Team


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Dear Friends,

We hope this letter finds each of you well and off to a blissful start of the 2017-2018 school year!

As we enter Year 5 of our current 5-year grant cycle, we have much to be thankful for when look back at our first 4 years, and as we look forward to the final year in this cycle, and prepare to apply for a renewed grant so that we can continue this important work.

We also welcome a new staff member to the CBSS Team — Jennifer Willis, who will serve as our Project Coordinator. Jen is a familiar face to many families and providers in the area — having worked at the Maryland School for the Blind for 5 years, then at the Maryland School for the Deaf for the past 9 years. She has participated in numerous CBSS training and outreach activities across time. Visit our “Who We Are — Our Staff” page (click here) to learn more about Jen and her new role, and about our other team members.

As always, we invite families and providers to share resources and ideas and experiences and photos with us. We love to add what matters to you to the website, so that it can matter to others as well. Please visit our “Contact Us” page (click here) to stay in touch.

Best wishes from your CBSS team
for an amazing 2017-2018 year,

Donna Riccobono, MEd — Project Director
Jennifer Willis, MS — Project Coordinator
Sandra Newcomb, PhD — Education & TA Specialist
Jeni Stepanek, PhD — Education & TA Specialist

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Donna, Sandy, Jeni, and Jen —
your 2017-2018 CBSS Staff Team

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A glance back at Year 4 —
power partnerships and collaborative activities…2017 0715 Family Day at the Farm photos

During Year 4, we continued to work with our partner organizations and teams of renowned experts. Together, we offered opportunities for children with dual sensory impairment and their families and providers to learn and grow, to network and access resources, and to play and create good memories. Highlights of the many training, networking, and recreational activities included:

  • Family Weekend and LEADers training (both in partnership with Parents Place of Maryland);
  • National symposiums and regional meetings on current research and education topics;
  • Special Topics Workshop, Summer Institute and “experts in the field” training sessions — on routines, communication, literacy, cortical vision impairment — with Mark Campano, Julie Durango, Christine Roman-Lantzy, and other partners;
  • Transition, SLP, and other current issue training sessions;
  • Online training modules and webinars on a variety of topics, including interveners, CVI, communication, literacy, and transition (in collaboration with NCDB, NFADB, Perkins, and other local deaf-blind projects and partner organizations);
  • The annual Fantasy Flight (with Children’s Hospice International) and the Day at the Farm adventure (with PPMD);
  • Mini-grant competition and activity presentations;
  • Advisory Committee and Joint Steering Committee meetings — with guest speakers representing families, providers, and policy makers; and,
  • So much more… all to keep everyone up-to-date on current research and best practice — with the ultimate goal of improving child outcomes.
And a glance forward —
exciting plans for Year 5…
As always, we encourage you to review the many Resources that we create or review and post on our website, including:
Finally, we are always encouraging and accepting donations to the Diane M. Kelly Memorial Fund.
  • The Diane M. Kelly Memorial Fund was established in honor of former CBSS Project Director who passed away in 2012 due to cancer.
  • The money raised gives us the means to provide additional supports to the families we serve –- including free participation in all of our training and workshop opportunities, and other essential logistic supports such as urgent respite care.
  • During the 2015-2016 year, we raised almost $1000 that will go directly to families in need. Thank you to our supporters — past, and present, and future!
  • To learn more, and to make a donation, please click here… 
We are always open to your feedback, and to responding to your inquiries about our programs and activities, and our resources and Partnerships.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or comments.
smileWe look forward to hearing from you!
Your 2017-2018 Connections Team,
Donna, Jen, Sandy, and Jeni
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Watch our
CBSS Introduction & Information
video here… 


View or download our
CBSS Brochure here…

Visita nuestra página 
“Recursos en Español” aquí…

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CBSS EVENTS & ACTIVITIES
Visit our Events page to stay up to date on 
workshops, meetings, activities, and more…

Contact Us here…

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