News

UPMC Chautauqua Opens New Maternity, Mental Health Units

As printed in the Post-Journal on 6/6/19

by Dennis Phillips
Business Editor

Is there a more suitable place to celebrate the creation of something new than in a maternity ward?Well, that is what UPMC Chautauqua officials did Wednesday as they hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony in the new state-of-the-art women’s and maternity care center≥ Local elected officials were also in attendance as UPMC Chautauqua officials opened its new two-floor addition, which also includes adolescent and adult mental health inpatient units.Brian Durniok, UPMC Chautauqua interim president, said the $20 million, 42,000-square-foot addition to the hospital is an example of what can be done when hospital officials share the goal of improving health care options for the community.

“This project represents the power of people working together to secure the funding for this project,” he said.

Betsy T. Wright, former UPMC Chautauqua president and CEO, said the project was made possible because of the $24.6 million grant the hospital received from the state in March 2016 and because of the integration with UPMC, which was finalized in December 2016.

She said thanks to Cecil Miller, UPMC Chautauqua vice president of operations, the project was finished on-time and under budget.

George Borrello, county executive, said there are a lot of positive economic development projects completed or ongoing in Jamestown and Chautauqua County, with UPMC Chautauqua expansion being the latest.

“Going forward we have a bright future in Chautauqua County and UPMC Chautauqua is an important part of that,” he said.

Following the ribbon cutting ceremony, UPMC Chautauqua officials hosted an open house of the new facilities. People were able to see for the first time the two mosaics created by Lisa Short of Falconer Printing & Design. One mosaic was created from photos submitted by those who were born or whose children were born at UPMC Chautauqua (WCA Hospital) or Jamestown General Hospital. People were invited to share baby photos to help commemorate the new hospital expansion. The photos of mom and baby or of just baby are on display in the new women’s and maternity care center.

The other mosaic was created by school-age children who created drawings using colors and inspirational words. This mosaic hangs in the new adolescent and adult mental health inpatient units.

The multi-million-dollar construction project began in September of 2017, commencing with demolition of the existing ambulance building and verification of existing structural features for steel fabrication. Concrete foundations progressed through winter and finished on-time to allow setting of structural steel.

Funds for the project were made possible from the state through the Essential Health Care Provider Support Program.

The new addition includes four labor and delivery suites; 12 post-partum private rooms; 10 inpatient adolescent mental health rooms; and 20 inpatient adult mental health rooms, including a spacious waiting area.

Rock’n the Road to Recovery Walk Benefits A Fresh Start Programs

Saturday, August 18, Rock’n the Road to Recovery Walk Benefits A Fresh Start Programs

Jamestown, N.Y. – In celebration of what would have been McKenzie Paulson’s twenty-sixth birthday and in remembrance of others who have suffered from substance use disorders, Rock’n the Road to Recovery will be held Saturday, August 18.

Same-day registration begins at 10 a.m. at the Falconer Fire Hall, 115 Davis Street, Falconer. The two-mile walk starts at 11 a.m.

This recovery and awareness walk takes place rain or shine.

The public is invited to the Family Friendly Birthday Celebration following the walk from noon to 4 p.m. at the fire hall.

The afternoon features performances by Take Two, Ken Hardley, and Anthony Flint. There will also be birthday cake, a hot dog or hamburg dinner for $5, a Huffy Bike raffle, 50/50 drawings, and face, rock and t-shirt painting for children.

Cost for the walk, t-shirt, birthday celebration and one dinner is $25. To register online, sponsor a walker, or make a donation, visit agfmtp.wufoo.com/forms/recovery . (Only online registrations prior to August 6 are guaranteed a t-shirt.)

Despite her efforts at recovery, McKenzie Paulson passed away from her struggle with drugs at the age of 23. Her mother, Lauri Keller of Falconer, is organizing this event, now in its third year.

Keller noted that her daughter was a typical All-American girl who, with her good grades, graduated a year early from Falconer High School. McKenzie enjoyed working with the elderly and those with disabilities and went to Jamestown Community College with plans to go into nursing.

This year the focus of the walk is to applaud the efforts of the volunteers with A Fresh Start and all the agencies and organizations that are assisting those with substance use disorders.

Proceeds benefit two A Fresh Start programs in Jamestown: the Marvin and Dolly Sutton Fresh Start House, a safe and secure home for women in recovery from substance use disorders and their children, and Child Warriors, helping children who have been touched by substance use disorders.

Created in memory of Alex Foulk, A Fresh Start is dedicated to helping people find a fresh start, free from substance use and alcoholism.  For those who need to talk but are not sure where to start, there are 5-7 p.m. meetings every Wednesday evening at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 410 North Main Street, Jamestown.

Other local resources include:

  • Chautauqua Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Council in the Springchorn Building, 501 West Third Street, Suites 3 and 4, (716) 664-3608 in Jamestown, and 51 East Third Street, Suite 2, in Dunkirk, (716) 366-4623.
  • Chautauqua County Mental Hygiene Department in Jamestown (716) 661-8330, Dunkirk (716) 363-3550, and Mayville (716) 753-4104.
  • Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County, open six days a week in the rear of the Gateway Center, 31 Water Street, Door #14, in Jamestown, (716) 661-9044, with certified peer specialists and more than two dozen peer support groups.
  • UPMC Chautauqua Mental Health &Chemical Dependency Programs, South County (716) 664-8641 and North County (716) 363-0018.

Ex-SWCS Football Star Carlson Earning His Stripes At UCF

As printed in the Post-Journal on 12/4/17

by Scott Kindberg
Sports Editor

Note: This is Alex’s cousin!

Jasen Carlson has been connected to sports in some way, shape or form his entire life. Twenty years ago as a preschooler he could always be found at Southwestern Central School, watching his older brother, Dusty, play for the Trojans.

Well, maybe not really watching.

“I remember going to all his basketball games,” Jasen said by cell phone Sunday night, “and me and (my friend) Coleman Sleggs … played under the bleachers.”

By the time he reached middle school, however, Jasen began to take athletics seriously, particularly football. And by the time he was a freshman, it was clear that the lineman had a bright future on the gridiron. In fact, upon his graduation in 2010, Jasen had two state championships and a slew of all-state honors under his belt, which led to a scholarship at the University at Buffalo.

Before he graduated from UB, Jasen earned Mid-American Conference honors, was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Chicago Bears and spent time in their rookie minicamp in the spring of 2014 before being cut. While his NFL dream was short-lived, Jasen’s chance to stay around the game was just getting started as Zach Duval, the former director of sports performance at UB, took a similar job at the University of Wyoming and asked Jasen to join him as a graduate assistant in the fall of 2015.

“I didn’t have to think twice,” Jasen said, “but I was skeptical … because I didn’t know anything about that place. Moving out there was actually a blessing. … It was interesting. I spent a lot of time in the weight room, learning and experiencing stuff. Out there, I could either be at the football facility or at home, and I chose the football facility. I learned a lot in that time.”
It appears that “education” has paid dividends.

By the spring of 2016, Duval took a job at Central Florida and Carlson joined him again. The Knights were 6-7 in head coach Scott Frost’s first year.
“The talent was there, but the team was still learning how to win,” Carlson said. “This year, they refuse to lose.”

And, well, they haven’t.

With Frost at the helm, Central Florida, which was 0-12 in 2015, is the lone unbeaten team in the FBS this season and is ranked 12th in the country after capturing the American Athletic Conference title Saturday with a 62-55 double-overtime victory over No. 16 Memphis. The win earned the Knights a berth in the Peach Bowl against Auburn on New Year’s Day, Frost’s final game. He was introduced as Nebraska’s new head coach on Sunday.

“(The Peach Bowl) is going to be a tough one,” Jasen said, “but we have some athletes on the team and they are going to match up better than a lot of people think.”
In preparation for that game, Jasen, under the watchful eye of Duval and assistant Andrew Strop, will do what he’s been doing since arriving in Orlando a year and a half ago.
“In strength and conditioning, I kind of have a hand in everything that isn’t the Xs and Os of football,” he said. ” … I actually work with all the players on their techniques in the lifts and how heavy they’re supposed to go. I also make sure they’re getting after it and not slacking off.”

After Central Florida’s bowl game, Frost, a former quarterback at Nebraska when it shared the 1997 national championship, will head to Lincoln and begin the process of returning the Cornhuskers to the top of the collegiate football world.

When that happens, it’s likely some UCF staff will join him, Carlson said.

“All signs point to me going to the University of Nebraska, my first full-time job,” Carlson said, “but nothing is set in stone.”

2017 Chautauqua Gran Fondo- Raises $15K Benefiting Local Charities

Jamestown, NY – September 14, 2017

Growing Every Year… Giving Back to Chautauqua County

The Chautauqua Gran Fondo returned for its third consecutive year, bringing its “party on wheels” through the beautiful scenic routes of Chautauqua County. The Chautauqua Gran Fondo is a community cycling event designed to promote health and well being for cyclists of all abilities and skill levels.

This family-friendly event held each year on the last Saturday of August, boasted four routes sure to welcome riders through the picturesque landscapes of Chautauqua Lake and surrounding historic destinations. Riders chose from a 20 Mile Social, 38 Mile Challenge, 40 Mile Fitness, and the 58 Mile Challenge. All routes featured full SAG support and refreshment stops along the way.

The Chautauqua Gran Fondo brought 500 riders to Chautauqua County. Early registration showed that 71% of registered riders came from outside of Chautauqua County. Partnership and support received from our Presenting Sponsor 59 Lucy Lane, and all of our local sponsors, was instrumental in making the Chautauqua Gran Fondo a successful event here in the heart of Chautauqua County.

Congratulations to the CLCSF (Chautauqua Lake Community Sailing Foundation) for winning this years “TEAM Challenge.”

Proceeds will benefit the following local charitable organizations:

The Royal Family Kids’ Camp

The Royal Family Kids’ Camp is a one-week summer camp experience for children ages 7-11 who have been abused, abandoned or neglected. Since 1998, the Bemus Point United Methodist Church has sponsored this national program.

Chautauqua County Veteran’s Endowment Fund

Created to help local Veterans in need, the Veteran’s Endowment Fund helps by providing a loan of up to $500. There is no interest on the loan and no time period for repayment.

Western New York Kidney Connection

The KidneyConnection is a site for potential living kidney donors and people in need on local kidney donation waiting list to communicate.

A Fresh Start, Created in Memory of Alex Foulk

A Fresh Start (AFS), a local non-profit committed to making a difference in our community. Bringing awareness and support to those trying to escape addiction.

The Crèche Inc.

Crèche is an all-volunteer nonprofit organization of dedicated and energetic women devoted to providing basic needs of newborns through children 18 years of age residing in the greater Jamestown area.

The Mental Health Association

MHA provides a Peer Recovery Support Center to help men, women, and families overcome the effects of mental illness and drug addiction.

A Great Finish to A “Big Ride”

Featuring Chautauqua County as a Premier Tourist Destination & Raising Funds for Local Charities

Rockin’ for Recovery Benefit Concert Featuring Pop Sensation Brielle

Jamestown, NY (May 2, 2017)—On Saturday, May 13, the first Rockin’ for Recovery Concert and Drug Awareness Fair, that benefits Chautauqua Alcohol and Substance Abuse Council (CASAC), A Fresh Start, WCA Foundation and the Mental Health Association will take place from 2 to 6 p.m. at Shawbuck’s, 212 W. Second St., Jamestown.  The free to all ages event is showcasing Prevention, Awareness and Recovery with Billboard Pop Sensation, Brielle!

On February 26, 2016, Kim Carlson lost her only son, Alex, to a heroin overdose. Because of her love for her son: her love for the community, Kim reached out to see if anyone would be interested in being “part of the solution” to raise awareness and educate the community on the growing heroin addiction problem. This community was (and is) losing too many people to this disease.

When Alex passed away, I knew that I must find a way to help make a difference for other families in our community,” stated Kim Carlson, mother of Alex Foulk.  “I had to put my grief to good use. I am so grateful to our community for the continued love and support that has so freely been given. Together, we stand united on the front lines of this nationwide epidemic. We must all know the facts; we must talk openly. I truly believe that the best way to bring change is to share our personal experiences and ask ourselves what we can do to be part of the solution.”

Kim started the Alex Foulk Fund in honor of her son at the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, which led to starting A Fresh Start Fund. The proceeds generated from these funds will begin to support an endowment fund at WCA Foundation that supports UPMC Chautauqua WCA’s long-term residential program. In addition to supporting these funds, the concert will benefit CASAC and the Mental Health Association.

People directly affected by this wide spread problem will be on hand, sharing their personal stories and advising those who have questions about how and where to get help. Also, representatives from A Fresh Start, CASAC, Mental Health Association, UPMC Chautauqua WCA, and other professional organizations will be on hand answering questions and demonstrating their mission.

Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan will discuss the Counties ongoing efforts with keynote speaker, Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz sharing what is happening from the National perspective followed by Q&A.

This concert and awareness fair will kick off the upcoming events and campaign the County has scheduled for the ensuing week and remainder of the year for drug prevention, awareness, and recovery.

Brielle is a Jamestown native, who is best known for her billboard chart hits such as “Avalanche” and “Rock the Catwalk”. She is excited to have the opportunity to perform for her hometown, and hope she can make a difference with this awareness concert.

If you are interested in making a donation, please direct them to the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, A Fresh Start Fund at 418 Spring St. Jamestown.

JHS Battle Raises Funds For Alex Foulk Foundation

As printed in the Jamestown Post-Journal on April 7, 2017

Mike Rukavina
Lead Paginator

Jamestown High School’s gymnasium seemed more like a colosseum on Thursday night, thanks to the annual Battle of the Classes.

Between the Herculean efforts put in by the students and staff, the chanting crowds and the boisterous music, the event went off without a hitch and raised thousands of dollars for a good cause in the meantime. The Alex Foulk Foundation and the Alex George Gregory Foulk Memorial Fund received $12,517 from the four classes at JHS, thanks to their fundraising efforts. Kim Carlson, Alex Foulk’s mother, thanked the students and staff. Foulk was a graduate of Jamestown High School. Carlson said she knew what it meant to be a proud Red Raider because her son was a Red Raider.

“The excitement in this room is what’s going to get everyone through their hard times in life,” she said. “It speaks volumes to our community that this (school) has raised the amount of money that they’ve raised in the past 38 years. You should be proud of yourselves – you’ve done a phenomenal job.”

Carlson said their hardwork and support of the cause is also close to her heart, and sends a specific message.

“It also says to me that you want to be part of a change,” she said. “You are paying attention to what is happening in our communities and our country. You can be that change, and you can be the generation that says ‘We’re not going to let this happen to our friends, we’re not going to fall into this addiction.’”

Overall, she said the students should be themselves and always reach out for help when they need it, no matter what.

“No matter where you go in life, stay true to yourself and remember this: no matter what the problem is, whether it’s big or small, you can always ask for help,” Carlson said. “Be confident in yourself, be strong and be proud.”

Tony Dolce, JHS teacher and senior class advisor, said the cause was near and dear to the students’ hearts.

“This year we chose the Alex Foulk Foundation,” Dolce said. “(Alex’s parents) have put together a foundation in his honor for rehabilitation for our community, and so at this time, on behalf of the student organization, I would like to present Kim Carlson with a check for $12,517.”

The students participated in a variety of activities such as a tug o’ war, basketball, a relay race, an art competition and a dance competition. For videos of the dances, find The Post-Journal on Facebook.