Dr. Ben Ciuffo, assistant superintendent of the Jericho School District, was recently honored by the Jericho, Syosset, Woodbury Partnership of Child Care Council of Nassau County for his dedication, vision, hard work and commitment to the organization.
Nassau County Presiding Officer Judy Jacobs (back, center) hands Dr. Ben Ciuffo a citation honoring him for his dedication and commitment to the community. Also pictured are Lenore Sylvan (left of Jacobs) and other members of the partnership. Photo by Mary Marks
Since its inception less than a decade ago, the Jericho-Syosset-Woodbury Child Care Partnership has made many great strides and many of those accomplishments were possible due to Dr. Ciuffo's contributions, visions and support.
The Jericho-Syosset-Woodbury Child Care Partnership works in collaboration with Child Care Council of Nassau, which has, for over two decades, been at the forefront of issues surrounding quality child care. The members of the partnership represent all segments of the community including individuals, educators, the corporate sector, child care providers, civic and government leaders.
"From the very beginning in late 1994, the need for the Partnership caught your interest," Lenore Sylvan, Child Care Partnership Chair, said to Dr. Ciuffo, one of the founders of the partnership, at the recent ceremony to honor him. "With Child Care Council of Nassau, you helped write the mission, the goals and how to define our geographic area."
Sylvan explained the importance of a "child care needs survey" and said that Dr. Ciuffo was instrumental in getting this initiative started by reaching out to Dr. Morales to form a community program in Huntington.
Some of Dr. Ciuffo's other contributions included getting over 50,000 copies of the Resource and Referral brochure printed at no cost to the group, with help from Brad Peters of Avon Reproductions.
"In addition, [Dr. Ciuffo] was most instrumental in producing the Quality Child Care video," said Sylvan. "You enlisted Mike Malkush, technology teacher with Jericho students to film the script written by Tim McBride with assistance from the council, Linda Castellanos, JoAnn Levine and others. You were the point man and the results were magnificent. This video has been shown and distributed across the nation to elected officials, children care professionals, communities, businesses, religious groups and media."
Grandparents as Caregivers, a group that aids grandparents who are caregivers again caring for their grandchildren, was first discussed in 2001. "[Dr. Ciuffo] encouraged involvement by the Partnership," said Sylvan. "Many informative materials for distribution have originated here and recently [Dr. Ciuffo] translated the Emergency Care Card into five languages... Just this past month he introduced Mark Steinberger, Director of Educational Technology. He will meet at the Jericho School District with interested grandparents to learn computer skills, enabling them to help their grandchildren with homework and to go online with their school districts."
Sylvan also thanked Dr. Ciuffo for his work in making the dream of a child care facility for the teachers of the Jericho School District a reality.
"We bless you, we thank you and we think you are a most remarkable human being," Sylvan concluded.