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Special-Needs Adult Program Gets New Technology Thanks to Chatham Investors Bank

Bruce Litinger, Dot Libman and Amalia Duarte, with Michael, Jessica and Adam (far right) of the P.R.i.D.E. program, accept a big grant from Investors' Jill Gregg (center, in white pantsuit). Credits: by Margot Cochran

Every day, more than 140 adults with special needs, including autism, Down syndrome and other intellectual or medical disabilities, continue to learn and grow at ECLC of New Jersey’s P.R.I.D.E. Program.

The adult clients exercise in yoga class and touch football, learn to grocery shop and cook, read in Book Club, volunteer throughout the community, create multi-media artwork, and much more. Their days are filled with purpose and meaning, camaraderie and laughter.

Thanks to a recent grant from the Investors Bank Foundation, these adults are also getting more opportunities to go online. Through a $5,000 grant, ECLC purchased new desktop computers and laptops for the P.R.I.D.E. Center in Chatham.

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“We are extremely grateful to the Investors Bank Foundation for this grant. Our adult clients go online for research and education as well as for leisure activities,” said P.R.I.D.E. Director, Dot Libman. “As our program grows, we want to make sure all of our clients have equal access to computers and aren’t held back on their road to independence.”

Investors Bank Chatham Branch Manager Jill Gregg, who helped coordinate the grant, said, “We are grateful for the opportunity to form an alliance with the ECLC’s P.R.I.D.E. Center that serves adults with special needs. Our Bank assists local organizations by forming ongoing relationships, and we look forward to participating as volunteers in ECLC’s special events and projects.” 

Lifelong Services

P.R.I.D.E. is part of ECLC’s network of nonprofit services offering, “Education, Careers & Lifelong Community” to nearly 800 children and adults with special needs. These programs offer families peace of mind that their child with special needs – no matter what age -- will be supported for as long as desired.

The support begins at ECLC’s two special-needs schools in Chatham and Ho-Ho-Kus for children ages 5-21. The educational program and services, such as occupational and physical therapy, are tailored to meet the needs of each student. Students also have a chance to fully participate in every school activity, including sports, clubs, Student Council, after-school trips and more. They receive workplace skills training starting at age 14 and get to try out and sample jobs in the community.

The goal is to prepare students to live as independently as possible. After graduation, students continue to receive services. They can find jobs with assistance from ECLC’s affiliate, Community Personnel Services (CPS). Graduates, who are not immediately ready for work, usually enter the P.R.I.D.E. Program.

P.R.I.D.E. was launched in 2008, the same year that Jessica Prost of Chatham graduated from ECLC. Her mother, Dee, is incredibly grateful for P.R.I.D.E. “My husband and I both work full-time, and if Jessica didn’t have P.R.I.D.E., she would be sitting at home doing nothing, not growing socially or intellectually and would be very depressed,” said her mother, Dee Prost. “Jessica enjoys going to P.R.D.E. every day. She enjoys the wonderful staff, seeing her friends and learning to become independent.”

About ECLC

Established in 1970, ECLC is an accredited, nonprofit and serves children and adults from 11 New Jersey counties.

Please call Public Relations Director Amalia Duarte ( or 973-635-1705 X26), to schedule a tour of the schools or adult programs. For more information about the Chatham school, contact Principal Diane Gagliardi ( or 973-635-1700).

ECLC is a member of the Alliance of Private Special Education Schools of North Jersey, a coalition of more than 30 state-approved private special education schools dedicated to helping parents and educators better understand and access appropriate program options. Learn more about the Alliance.

About the Investors Foundation

Investors Bank, headquartered in Short Hills, New Jersey, is a full-service community bank that has been serving customers since 1926. With over $21 billion in assets and a network of more than 145 retail branches, Investors delivers personalized services and products tailored to the needs of its customers. Investors’ banking services include complete deposit, loan and cash management products for consumers and businesses. The Investors Foundation supports non-profit organizations that enrich the quality of life in the communities the Bank serves. To date, the Foundation has dispensed more than $15 million to support initiatives ranging from community and civic improvements to the fight against diseases. Investors Bank. Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender.


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A Week at the Library of The Chathams Monday, February 19 – Sunday, February 25, 2018


By Galina Natenzon

Friends of the Library are continuing their book collection in preparation for Annual Book Sale.  Kids are off from school on Monday for Presidents’ Day – bring them to the library!  We have plenty for them to do.  For adults, Professor Licklider’s second lecture on North Korea will take place on Tuesday.  The ...

A Week at the Library of The Chathams - Monday, February 5 – Sunday, Sunday, February 11, 2018

A Week at the Library of The Chathams

Monday, February 5 – Sunday, Sunday, February 11, 2018


By Galina Natenzon

Friends of the Library book collection continues.  The tax season is here, and dedicated volunteers are here to help you with you tax returns!

For information about all programs or to sign up, please call the library at 973‑635‑0603 or go to ...

Imagine a Chatham Toboggan Ride from the Top of Fairmount Avenue to Main Street

Did you know….
there was a time when Chatham kids could ice skate from downtown Chatham all the way to Florham Park? And that a toboggan ride could last from the top of Fairmount Avenue down to Main Street and beyond?

Those were the days!

This was back in the early to mid-1900s. The Passaic River meandered through grassy meadows and woods on the north side of Chatham. The marshy ...


AtlantiCast Medical Minute: Atlantic Orthopedic Institute’s Scoliosis and Spinal Deformity Center

On this episode of the AtlantiCast Medical Minute, we’ll take you inside the Atlantic Orthopedic Institute’s Scoliosis and Spinal Deformity Center, with the center’s director, Jason Lowenstein, MD.

Video Link:

AtlantiCast Episode 011

Breaking Atlantic Health System news on this week’s AtlantiCast! Plus, find out why Morristown Medical Center is one of the best hospitals in the nation when it comes to recovering from joint surgery, see the newest center for fighting brain cancer and an Atlantic Health System red-carpet premiere!


Sara Irish of Chatham Named to Saint Joseph's University Dean's List

February 18, 2018

PHILADELPHIA, PA - Sara Irish of Chatham earned Dean's List honors at Saint Joseph's University for the Fall 2017 semester.

Irish studies Risk Management and Insurance in the University's Erivan K. Haub School of Business. Students must achieve a grade point average of 3.5 or above, a B or greater in all their classes, and complete at least 15 credits to earn Dean's ...