Chicago, IL – NYAP’s Above and Beyond Award – Goes to… Maureen McInerney !

Kathleen Sullivan, CANEI Team Leader in Illinois presented the Above and Beyond Award to Maureen McInerney. Kathleen wrote the following: Maureen McInerney, began with us as a contingent TA in April – trained in Foster Care in anticipation for the CANEI contract with Cook County Juvenile Probation. In the first week, we received all 7 referrals at once! As our training tells us, we hit the ground running. Maureen revised her schedule, her child-care, her family obligations, etc. to ensure that every kid was abundantly seen that week, and that the CANEI program was effectively presented to each family. We had no idea that all referrals would come in one week. This required an enormous amount of flexibility, and Maureen came through like I’ve never seen anyone else come through.

It didn’t stop there. With 7 new referrals, we adopted seven families with 7 varying needs. Schedules are constantly revised, appointments changed, and at the drop of a hat, we have to be ready to improvise. Maureen does this with ease, despite the fact that she is juggling alot.

With the CANEI-JJ program, we enter very unsafe neighborhoods. The gunshots are heard close by nearly every day as we drive to and from. Even if we are not riding in the same car, a system was devised of texting and calling each other often to check in on each other’s safety several times a day. Maureen devised this system. She actually even went to my apartment when she couldn’t get ahold of me one morning!

Most importantly, the rapport she has established with the kids is second to none. While training in Foster Care, she was assigned a girl who has since returned home. Maureen STILL sees this child and two other Foster Care kids every week, beyond the 7 kids we have from Cook County Juvenile Probation. The kids love her, ask for her, respect her and are learning a great deal from her.

Maureen is the true example of our vision. She has the quality care of kids as her number one focus, no matter what it takes. She is a true partner, a true caring professional, and, as her supervisor, I feel that she is most deserving of this award.