Synapse House has officially launched its Flour to Empower Bakery and Employment Program to provide much needed job training opportunities to individuals affected by brain injury and stroke. We are the only social enterprise specific to individuals with acquired brain injury in the Chicago Metropolitan area.
The Employment Program of Synapse House provides a Work Readiness Program, a Culinary Internship and Supported Employment at our bakery. Individuals will be trained by our experienced Pastry Chef, Christine and work to obtain their Food Handlers Card.
The Flour to Empower Bakery has wonderfully delicious muffins and breads including a blueberry lemon muffin, apple cranberry muffin, cinnamon roll muffin, chocolate bread and a carrot berry bread. These items are available for purchase, as well as cool t-shirts, on the website at synapsehouse.org/online-shop.html. We hope that you will support our mission by purchasing one of our delicious baked goods or products!
You are invited to stop by our booth at the Elmhurst Farmer's Market on Wednesdays to shop and to meet those individuals who are working hard to recover from acquired brain injury as well as the dedicated staff.
All the members of the Clubhouse would like to take this time to invite you and yours to our Harvest Moon Gala. It will be held on Sept. 21st, 2017. This year it will be at the Katherine Legge Memorial Lodge in Hinsdale, Il. A good and enjoyable time will be had by all the attendees. Your friends and coworkers will enjoy the fabulous spread that is placed before you. You will get a chance to converse with members, staff, and volunteers at our facility.
Starting this week you can find our delicious muffins for sale at the Elmhurst Farmers Market! Every muffin is made and packaged by a brain injury survivor from our Social Enterprise Bakery, FLOUR TO EMPOWER.
We hope that you will support our mission by making a donation, volunteering or purchasing one of our delicious baked goods!
Elmhurst Farmers Market
515 S York St, Elmhurst, IL 60126
It i s about time for camp it is a great camp for adults with brain injury we have a great time all kinds of activity fishing swimming arts and crafts first day we check in set up our bunk get some lunch then we all start gathering firewood then we sit around a campfire talk about what we have been doing for the last year while making s’mores another fun night is casino night ginny gives us some play cash then we play cards bingo blackjack poker then at the end night whatever cash you have won we have a auction for all kinds of cool prizes
Fishing is my favorite activity cuz every year I always catch the most my biggest one was a five pound bass that was a nice lunch in the morning there’s about five of us that get up early and go to one of the cabins that has a coffee pot and we sit around and drink about two pots of coffee before breakfast i have a lot of good friends at camp that i can’t wait to see again i will be going to camp in about 27 days the camp is in Hudson IL about 30 miles south of Bloomington it is a large campground run by the easter seals good time had by all there are about 50 in our camp everyone in our camp has a traumatic brain injury.
By Synapse House Member, Bob
Memorial Day is a day of remembrance in the United States of America for those men and woman who died in military service defending the USA. It is observed on the last Monday in May of every year. And, traditionally, it is seen as the beginning of the summer season.
People observe the day by attending a Memorial Day parade, and they also have picnics where beer, brats, hamburgers, pizza, pretzels, potato chips and ice cream are served.
Many celebrations feature live bands playing old favorites from groups like The Rolling Stones, The Who, Cheap Trick, The Doobie Brothers, REO Speedwagon, The Beatles and Yes.
Some parties get out-off-hand due to the merriment and alcohol. In these venues, men take their shirts off, and party like it’s 1999. Yeh!!!! They have fun, and it’s relaxing. It’s not something they do often but when they do party, they do it with style and enthusiasm.
One year - 1995 -- the festivities got out of hand; the beer was flowing and the younger men were punching back shots of whiskey. All was well until two of the gentlemen passed out, crashing to the dance floor in a loud “thud”. There they slept for three hours, waking with a headache and wrinkled clothes. But, they had fun and enjoyed each other’s company. It was a party like no other. They could not wait until next year’s festivities.
By Chris Z. Synapse House
Having loaded the car the night before, we climbed into the vehicle and pulled out of garage. It was short drive to highway. We entered the highway and started to head up to the cottage, It did not take long until I saw a dark cloud in the sky up ahead. Suddenly, the cloud made a deep drop in altitude. I was wrong about that cloud. It was not a cloud at all. It was a huge flock of birds flying their way down south. As we got closer, I was able to identify them. It was just a massive flock of starling headed down south for the winter. They were coursing their way to their wintering grounds. As we continued on I noticed some Sandhill Cranes feeding in a cut milo field, There was no excitement as they bowed their long necks and were picking up the loose feed on the ground that was missed by the thrasher.They were oblivious to all the activity around them.
As we on our course up to the cottage. We had no idea, that this was just one the many encounters that we would see. A little further down the road, I ventured a look to my left and saw a huge deer. He was a big buck that sported a fine set of antlers.He turned out to be one of the many more we would spot on this trip. We continued on down the highway and looked to my right, there was a small flock of turkeys strutting their way through the countryside. It was good to see that many birds, proving that that snow we had last winter did not hurt the spring’s brooding stock. Moving on down the road we were continuing seeing flocks of geese feeding in the fields.One could only hope, that of those birds would find their way to be in front of me during the upcoming hunting season.
As we got closer to our cabin, I even spotted a flock ducks making their way through the sky. They were too far off to tell what kind of ducks they were, but close enough to make me happy.
My work with DU was showing signs of success.
After six hours of driving, we arrived at our destination.
Fictional Story by Synapse House Member, Tom W.
Adelles restaurant in Wheaton, Illinois is a first-class restaurant that my family and I frequent on a regular basis. I enjoy the fish dishes such as Salmon, Shark and Trout. The steaks are excellent too. Yummy!
Adelles has an excellent wine collection, both red and white. The vino is superb and management does a wonderful job pairing wines with meals. For instance, a steak dinner is matched with a Cab or Pinot Noir. Superb! While a salmon or lobster meal is matched with a chilled Chardonnay. Yummy!
The desserts are excellent too. My favorite is the apple pie ala mode. It is sweet and cool. This is paired with a cup of decaf coffee.
The restaurant is in our local town so we frequently bump into people we know, which is positive and uplifting. Sometimes we attend Adelles with friends which makes the dinner experience all the more uplifting and enjoyable.
By Synapse House Member, Chris Z.
The “Bake to Work” Program consists of three parts which are the Work Readiness Program, “Bake to Work” Internship Program, and the “Bake to Work” Supported Employment. The Work Readiness program focuses on preparing participating members for non-supported competitive employment or supported employment through a series of 20 basic work related skill assignments necessary to be successful in return to work efforts. Individuals will also engage in the daily work of the Clubhouse to be able to practice work readiness skills and address any barriers. The Bake To Work Internship program is designed to provide internship opportunities to individuals with acquired brain injury in the food service industry who are preparing for competitive employment. Individuals who are selected for the internship that engage in any food preparation will train to obtain the Illinois Food Handlers Card which is required for any individual employed in the food service industry. Individuals will be required to have addressed or be actively addressing employment barriers and fine tuning work readiness skills through a separate vocational program or through the Synapse House Work Readiness Program or Clubhouse Program. This could include participation in the Culinary Unit for an introduction to food service sanitation and meal preparation. Internships for the program could also focus on the business aspect of the bakery business such as the marketing or customer service needs. The internship program is three months long and is competitive entry based. Internship hours and days are based on shift assignments and are typically 2-3 hours per day, 2-3 shifts per week. Individuals interested in this program are to be available for up to 15 hours per week of internship hours. Hours of operation are from Monday through Friday, 7:30am-4:00pm. Individuals will continue to address any work readiness goals for an additional one to two hours per day. The Supported Employment Program is designed to serve individuals who need basic job preparation and paid work experience in a structured setting. Participants engage in paid work opportunities through our Bakery setting 1 to 4 days per week for up to 12 months. Individuals are assigned a Work Unit Coordinator to address any deficiencies in work readiness and residual barriers. Individuals must have their Illinois Food Handlers Card.
We formed pairs that would work together as a unit to construct the needed sandwiches. We wore gloves on our non dominant hand so that we were forced to really think about how we would work together as one hand. We placed the bread on a plate and got the jars of peanut butter and jelly on the table. We then opened the jars with one hand and decided which partner would handle the various parts of the construction of the sandwich. Remember that we could only use the gloved hand to handle the bread, jars, and silverware during the construction of the sandwiches.We had to communicate with our partner, so that you could work together and compete the job. It was easy placing the peanut butter on the bread and was real laugh to try and spread it evenly across the bread. Once that was done, we then applied the jelly with a spoon and spread across the surface as evenly as we could. We then placed the two pieces of bread together and the project was completed.We then cleaned up the area and settled down to the sandwiches that we constructed.
It showed us, that we could work together as a group and complete a special job that had to be completed.
The Clubhouse would like to welcome its newest member Mary T. She is single and is seventy-eight years old. She has one child John, who is thirty-two years old. Her brain injury happened two years ago. She is new to all the changes that are happening
Written by Synapse House Member, Tom W.
A look at the 2017 DuPage Human Race! It was a great opportunity to connect with amazing people and raise money for Synapse House. It was the perfect workout for a cool sunny Saturday morning!