Let's Paint!
Aug
30
6:30pm 6:30pm

Let's Paint!

COST: $20 per person (includes studio rental, canvases, easel, brushes, paints, and aprons)

Come join ACI at Make Me Take Me for an evening of guided painting! Dr. Yang, the studio owner, will guide the group from blank canvas to finished painting. All levels of artist are welcome! No experience needed!

Light refreshments will be served. Accommodations upon request.

Registration deadline is August 24th.

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Disabled Stand Against Hate: A Peaceful Candlelight Gathering
Aug
31
6:30pm 6:30pm

Disabled Stand Against Hate: A Peaceful Candlelight Gathering

Disabled Stand Against Hate.jpg

On August 31st, the disabled community and friends will come together to in response to the events in Charlottesville. Join us for a candlelight vigil to celebrate "love for all" through candlelight, speeches and fellowship. We will denounce hate, bigotry and intolerance by standing in solidarity. Everyone welcome!

Light refreshments will be served after the vigil.

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The Holocaust & People with Disabilities
Sep
12
1:00pm 1:00pm

The Holocaust & People with Disabilities

ACI will be hosting a presentation and lecture on the Holocaust and people with disabilities. This program will feature a presentation by the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ.

Over 275,000 people with disabilities were murdered during the Holocaust of World War II. This event is our way of honoring the survivors and remembering the victims.

Light refreshments will be served.

Funding for this workshop is provided by the NJ Council for the Humanities.

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The Survival Guide to Healthy Relationships
Sep
21
10:30am10:30am

The Survival Guide to Healthy Relationships

The Survival Guide to Healthy Relationships is a free workshop that focuses on the different types of relationships that people will experience in their lives.

This workshop will examine the common characteristics of relationships, as well as how our behavior and communication style differs in each scenario. It will also provide information on boundaries, personal space, and appropriate greetings in different types of social settings. Important tips about electronic communication and social media will be provided to promote safety in online relationships.   

Presenter: Michael Pearson, Jr., Training and Technical Assistance Coordinator, New Jersey Self-Advocacy Project

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Free Flu Shots
Sep
22
10:00am10:00am

Free Flu Shots

ACI has partnered with St. Peter's University Hospital's Community Mobile Health Services to offer free flu shots! Staff from St. Peter's will be on hand to give out information.

NOTE: Please bring your Medicare Card Part B or Insurance Card.

  • If Medicare part B is your primary insurance you must present your card at the time of the Flu Clinic.
  • If you are in a HMO, you should receive your immunizations at your HMO facility.
  • For those without Medicare part B, we can bill your private insurance provider.
  • If you do not have insurance, you can pay with cash or check and will be given a receipt.
    • Standard flu immunization: $25.00 (18 years and over)
    • High Dose flu immunization: $40.00 (65 years and over)
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Jewelry Making
Sep
22
6:00pm 6:00pm

Jewelry Making

COST: $5.00 (includes jewelry and supplies)

Do you want to learn how to make your own jewelry? Come to ACI and take part in our jewelry making workshop with instructor Doreen Nalbandian. At the end of the event you will have something shiny to take home. No experience needed!

Light refreshments will be served. Accommodations upon request.

Registration deadline is September 19th.

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NJ Disability Pride Parade & Celebration 2017
Oct
7
9:00am 9:00am

NJ Disability Pride Parade & Celebration 2017

The New Jersey Disability Pride Parade & Celebration is a grass-roots effort organized and hosted by ACI with the support of the statewide disability community. The 7th Annual NJDPP will be held on Saturday, October 7th at 9:00 AM in Trenton, NJ. We are expecting hundreds of people and organizations representing a wide variety of disabilities to march and roll from the Trenton War Memorial to the celebration site at Mill Hill Park!

For more information, please visit njdisabilitypride.com.

If you plan on attending, let us know by filling out the form below!

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Nutrition for People with Disabilities
Oct
19
10:30am10:30am

Nutrition for People with Disabilities

"Empty calories"...what are they?

Nutrition labels...what does all that information mean anyway?

Eating healthy? I'm not a fan of cooking, so how can I make more nutritious food choices?

Having some basic tools and information to help you make healthy choices and knowing how to prevent illness is a key part of staying well. Join us for some helpful tips on nutrition, meal planning, grocery shopping, making healthy substitutions, portion sizes and more. Presented by Colleen Roche of the NJ Division of Disability Services.

This workshop is intended for people with disabilities who may be living on their own for the first time and/or those who may not feel comfortable in the kitchen or grocery store.

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What's Your Advocacy? Conference
Aug
19
9:00am 9:00am

What's Your Advocacy? Conference

Presented by NJCDD and ACI and in association with REV UP NJ.

Join us for the second installment of this FREE conference series for families and self-advocates! This event will focus on voting and fully participating in our democracy.

Featuring:

  • Guest Speakers
  • Roundtable Discussions
  • Advocacy Exercises
  • Voting Booth Tutorials
  • Networking Opportunities

Continental breakfast and lunch provided for all attendees. Transportation assistance available.

If accommodations are required, please contact the NJCDD by Monday, August 7th at 609-292-3745.

Registration deadline is August 14th.

Visit njcdd.org for updates.

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Basic Rights in Special Education
Jul
20
6:30pm 6:30pm

Basic Rights in Special Education

Presented by Hinkle, Fingles & Prior, Attorneys at Law

Attorneys at Hinkle, Fingles & Prior have more than seventy years of combined experience providing expert counsel and legal services to families of people with disabilities and seniors. The firm’s attorneys have argued many of the precedent setting cases affecting people with disabilities in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.  

Hinkle, Fingles & Prior provide legal support across the entire lifespan, from securing early intervention services, to special education, adult services, guardianship and special needs trusts.

Registration deadline is July 13th.

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How to Respond to an Active Shooter Situation
Jul
20
1:00pm 1:00pm

How to Respond to an Active Shooter Situation

This training will provide you with resources to help you prepare for and respond to an active shooter incident.

Presented by Captain Martin Mogensen, Union County Police and Sheldon Green, Union County Office of Emergency Management.
 
Light snacks will be served.

Registration deadline is July 18th.

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Plays in the Park: West Side Story
Jul
19
8:00pm 8:00pm

Plays in the Park: West Side Story

COST: $7.00 at the door. $5.00 for Seniors and Persons with Disabilities. Cash only.
(When buying your ticket, tell the Roosevelt Park Box Office that you are with Alliance Center for Independence)

Plays in the Park is proud to present West Side Story live on stage!

Join ACI at Roosevelt Park for a musical journey back in time to the 1950’s streets of Upper West Side, New York City! Witness the award winning story of two rival street gangs that battle for control of the neighborhood. The situation becomes complicated when a gang member falls in love with a rival's sister in this modern take on Romeo and Juliet.

Arrive no later than 7:30 PM. If you would like concessions, bring money or bring food from home. Parking is free, but is first come first serve. Transportation will not be provided. Bring a lawn chair no higher than 40 inches if you need a seat.

Registration deadline is July 11th.

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Disability Voter Registration Week Kickoff
Jul
18
12:00pm12:00pm

Disability Voter Registration Week Kickoff

On Tuesday, July 18th from 12:00 to 2:00 PMREV UP NJ and the Alliance Center for Independence, will be celebrating National Disability Voter Registration Week by hosting an event at the NJ State House Annex.

This event is part of REV UP's on going efforts to participation from the disability community in the elections process. The day will include live entertainment, voter registration, prominent speakers, resource tables and giveaways. This year's gubernatorial election is an important one for New Jersey's voters with disabilities.

Come out, have a good time, and let your voice be heard...your vote counts!

REV UP NJ is part of a national campaign to include 54 million Americans in the Election process. This event is funded by the generosity of the NJ Council on Developmental Disabilities.

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Stress Management Workshop
Jun
28
10:00am10:00am

Stress Management Workshop

Feeling stressed or anxious? Overwhelmed by the demands of work, family, and everyday pressures of life?

We all have stress in our lives. The question is how do you manage it. Learn how to restore balance in your life!

Join us on Wednesday, June 28th from 10:00 to 11:30 AM for an information, interactive workshop on managing everyday stress.

This workshop is presented by Amerigroup.

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Baseball Game: Patriots vs. Ducks
Jun
15
7:05pm 7:05pm

Baseball Game: Patriots vs. Ducks

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COST: FREE, but donations are always welcome! (donations payable to the Alliance Center for Independence, 629 Amboy Ave, Edison, NJ)

Batter up! Join ACI at TD Bank Ballpark to cheer for our Somerset Patriots on to victory over the Long Island Ducks!

Meet us at the main entrance at 6:30 PM to pick up your ticket.

Transportation will not be provided. Bring money for concessions if desired.

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Social Security Work Incentive Programs
Jun
12
1:00pm 1:00pm

Social Security Work Incentive Programs

Looking to start working or return to work, but concerned about losing your Social Security and health care benefits? Would you like to know more about work incentives for SSD and SSI recipients?

Join us at ACI on Monday, June 12th from 1:00 to 2:30 PM for an informative workshop on Social Security work incentive programs. Learn how you can work and earn an income while still collecting SSD and SSI.

Presenter: Elisa Cohen, Community Work Incentive Coordinator, NJ Work Incentive Network (NJWINS). NJ WINS is a program of the NJ Family Resource Network

Who would benefit from this workshop:

  • Supplemental Security Income recipients
  • Social Security Disability Income recipients
  • Individuals returning to work
  • Individuals who are looking for their first job
  • It's All About Work participants
  • Job coaches
  • Parents of working age young adults
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Zika is in NJ!
May
26
11:00am11:00am

Zika is in NJ!

Presented by ACI in conjunction with #NOZika and NJID.

Join us for an informative workshop on how you can protect yourself and others from Zika!

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Write On!
May
22
6:00pm 6:00pm

Write On!

SUGGESTED DONATION: $3.00

Are you a writer? Are you a poet? Do you want to become one? Come join ACI at our creative writing workshop! We will be sharing our work, helping each other to become better writers, and taking a page from famous authors and poets to inspire us to keep writing!

Light refreshments provided. Accommodations made upon request. Transportation will not be provided.

Registration deadline is May 17th.

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The Gubernatorial Race and What it Means to New Jerseyans with Disabilities
May
1
11:00am11:00am

The Gubernatorial Race and What it Means to New Jerseyans with Disabilities

Zach Baldwin, Director of Outreach at the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) in Washington D.C., will be coming to ACI to discuss the importance of REV UP NJ in the gubernatorial race as well as national policy priorities.

Light lunch served. Accommodations upon request.

Full political participation for Americans with disabilities is a top priority. AAPD – REV UP works with state and national coalitions on effective, non-partisan campaigns to eliminate barriers to voting, promote accessibility of voting technology and polling places; educate voters about issues and candidates; promote turnout of voters with disabilities across the country; engage candidates and the media on disability issues, and protect eligible voters’ right to participate in elections.

This work is supported with a grant from the NJ Council on Developmental Disabilities.

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Birthing, Dying, Becoming Crip Wisdom Viewing Party
Apr
27
6:00pm 6:00pm

Birthing, Dying, Becoming Crip Wisdom Viewing Party

  • Kean University (Mirron Student Center 226) (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Sins Invalid (sinsinvalid.org) is a disability justice based performance project that celebrates artists with disabilities, artists of color and LGBTQ and gender-variant artists through provocative works that challenge paradigms of “normal” and “sexy.”

Birthing, Dying, Becoming Crip Wisdom (2016) is an evocative exploration of creation, aging and mortality, a journey through genesis, transformative power and earth that plunges audiences into visions of life and death, the disabled body/mind and liberation.

Admission: Free and open to the public. Light food and refreshments will be available.

Accessibility: Film is captioned and venue is wheelchair accessible.

Transportation: Kean University is accessible via Access Link, NJ Transit bus, and the accessible NJ Transit Union Station across the street from the main campus. Free, accessible parking is also available on-site.

Co-sponsored by the Graduate and Part-time Student Council and Human Rights Institute at Kean University and the Alliance Center for Independence

For more information or for additional access needs, contact Millie Gonzalez at mgonzale@kean.edu.

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Denim Day
Apr
26
10:00am10:00am

Denim Day

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month! 1/4 women and 1/6 men experience some form of sexual violence and people with disabilities are at a higher risk of victimization. ACI supports survivors of sexual violence and you can too. The material denim and color teal are symbols of sexual assault awareness.

Join us on April 26th from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM, as we create denim and teal pins to raise awareness and show support for sexual violence survivors.

Light refreshments will be served.

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Auditory Screenings
Apr
25
10:00am10:00am

Auditory Screenings

Get your hearing checked with a free auditory screening conducted by St. Peter's University Hospital's Community Mobile Health Program.

Featuring a presentation by ClearCaptions, manufacturers of communication equipment for individuals with hearing loss. Free caption phones will be distributed to those with hearing impairments who have trouble using conventional phones.

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Healthy Living Gardening
Apr
21
6:00pm 6:00pm

Healthy Living Gardening

SUGGESTED DONATION: $5.00

ACI invites you to come and learn about gardening! Jerri Barclay and Anne Ryder from the Rutgers Master Gardeners Program will be presenting information about plants that can be used for healthy living. There will be an interactive portion of the presentation where participants will have the opportunity to have hands on experience with plants. Please wear something you don’t mind getting dirty.

Light refreshments will be served. Accommodations made upon request.

Registration deadline is April 14th.

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Vision Screenings
Apr
13
3:00pm 3:00pm

Vision Screenings

Have you gotten your eyes checked lately?

On Thursday, April 13th, the Alliance Center for Independence will host free vision screenings conducted by the Student Sight Savers program from the New Jersey Medical School at Rutgers.

Light refreshments will be provided.

ABOUT NJMS STUDENT SIGHT SAVERS

  • What we do: We provide retinal screenings for visually threatening diseases in the community at local health fairs, conventions, etc.
  • What we can detect: We are able to detect early signs of pathology including, but not limited to: glaucoma, cataracts, retinal changed associated with diabetes. We also take measurements of visual acuity, intraocular pressure, and refraction to assess general visual parameters.

General guidelines on how to maintain optimal visual health:

  1. WEAR SUNGLASSES: According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, sunglasses should be worn at all times when outdoors especially during the summer, at the beach, when playing winter sports at high altitudes, and any medications that can cause light sensitivity.
  2. NUTRITION: high levels of cholesterol and blood pressure can result in damage to blood vessels in the eye resulting in the development of possible conditions such as glaucoma, macular edema that can compromise vision.
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The Clothesline Project
Apr
12
10:00am10:00am

The Clothesline Project

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Join ACI in decorating your t-shirt and help bring awareness to sexual assault!

The Clothesline Project is a visual display that bears witness to violence against women. During the public display, a clothesline is hung with shirts that are decorated to represent a particular woman's experience, by the survivor herself or someone who cares about her.

The purpose of the project is to bear witness to survivors and victims of the war against women, to help with the healing process for survivors and loved ones, to educate and raise awareness, and to provide a nationwide network of support. You do not have to be a survivor of sexual abuse to participate.

Materials and t-shirts will be provided. All of the shirts will be hung in the ACI building during the month of April.

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National Public Health Week: Walk & Roll
Apr
3
11:00am11:00am

National Public Health Week: Walk & Roll

Walk & Roll banner

ACI is proud to partner with the American Public Health Association (APHA) for National Public Health Week!

During the first week of April each year, APHA brings together communities across the United States to observe National Public Health Week to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving our nation.

Join us while we promote National Public Health Week by carrying signs and walking & rolling for our health! We will be meeting at the ACI office located at 629 Amboy Ave, Edison, NJ 08837.

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Jigsaw Puzzle Night
Mar
23
6:30pm 6:30pm

Jigsaw Puzzle Night

SUGGESTED DONATION: $5.00

If you are looking for a fun relaxing night come fit right in at ACI’s Jigsaw Puzzle Night. Enjoy conversation and music while putting together puzzles!

Light refreshments will be served.

Registration deadline is March 13th. In the event of inclement weather you will be contacted.

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Basics of Radiation and Community Reception Center Overview Course
Mar
22
11:00am11:00am

Basics of Radiation and Community Reception Center Overview Course

Presented by John Dowd, Middlesex County Health Department

The two hour course will teach participants about the fundamentals of radiation and provide them an overview of a Community Reception Center.  Individuals will learn how to define radiation, identify different types of radiation, and describe units used to measure amounts of radiation.  The program will explain sheltering in place, self-decontamination, and ways to stay informed during a radiation emergency.  The purpose and services of a Community Reception Center and an overview of monitoring equipment will also be presented.

Module 1 – Basics of Radiation
Module 2 – What to do during a radiation emergency
Module 3 – Community Reception Center (Population Monitoring)

Attendees will also be invited to participate in an exercise on April 25th.

Light lunch will be served. Accommodations upon request.

Registration deadline is March 15th.

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SHARES Task Force Conference 2017
Mar
13
8:00am 8:00am

SHARES Task Force Conference 2017

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COST: General Admission $55; Collaborating Partners, Sexual Violence Advocates and SANEs $35; Students $25

All individuals should have access to information and services to discover and meet their sexuality related needs and desires. This may include expressing one’s sexual desires, forming close relationships, making decisions about sexual activities, going for a sexual health exam, using a safer sex or contraceptive, or getting support as a survivor of intimate partner violence or sexual assault. The SHARES Task Force conference provides space for individuals with disabilities and their caregivers, professionals, and service providers to access information and engage in workshops together.

The goal of the 2017 SHARES Task Force conference is to highlight approaches that support healthy sexuality and people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. As a new feature, the conference will feature a track for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to communicate about healthy sexuality and their needs.

Who Should Attend: Mental health professionals, health and human service providers, developmental disabilities agency direct care staff, sexual violence advocates and SANES, case managers, behavior specialists, self-advocates, parents and caregivers.

Sponsors

  • Sexuality, Health, Awareness, Rights, Education and Safety
  • Task Force for People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

SHARES Members

  • Finding Your Individuality (FYI)
  • Developmental Disabilities Center (DDC) at Morristown Medical Center
  • Atlantic Health/Morris CARES (formerly known as the Morris County Sexual Assault Center)
  • NJ Division of Disability Services (DDS)
  • Middlesex L.E.A.D.S. - A collaboration of the Middlesex County Center for Empowerment and the Alliance Center for Independence
  • NJ Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD)

To learn more about the conference and/or SHARES Task Force, please contact Tracy A. Higgins at:
Finding Your Individuality, 775 Mountain Boulevard, Watchung, NJ 07069
Office: 908-552-4469
Email: tracy@findingyourindividuality.com

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Day of Mourning Vigil 2017
Mar
1
6:00pm 6:00pm

Day of Mourning Vigil 2017

As part of a nation-wide Day of Mourning, ACI, along with disability advocates, will be holding a vigil on Wednesday, March 1st to honor the lives of disabled people murdered by families and caretakers. The vigil will address violence against people with disabilities and speak out against cultural prejudices and send the message that disability is not a justification for violence. Our lives are worth living!

The Autistic Self Advocacy Network, Not Dead Yet and the National Council on Independent Living held the first Day of Mourning in 2012. This is a national event with cities around the country participating.

If you are interested in speaking, please contact Carole Tonks at ctonks@adacil.org.

Join us for light snacks and refreshments in the ACI office after the vigil.

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Bowling Night: Strike Away the Cold
Feb
24
6:00pm 6:00pm

Bowling Night: Strike Away the Cold

COST: $20 per person which includes: two hours of bowling, two slices of pizza, unlimited fountain drinks, and bowling shoes. (Send checks to 629 Amboy Ave, Edison, NJ NO LATER than Feb 6th. Make checks payable to: Alliance Center for Independence, MEMO: BOWLING)

Come get away from the winter weather and spend a night with your friends bowling and having a blast!

Transportation will not be provided. Accommodations upon request.

SNOW DATE: Saturday, February 25th from 2:00 to 4:00 PM

NOTE: This program is currently full. Fill out the form below if you would like to be added to the waiting list.

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Valentine's Day Movie Night
Feb
10
5:30pm 5:30pm

Valentine's Day Movie Night

Valentine's Day Movie Night

COST: $3.00 per person (includes food and snacks!)

Come join us for the timeless classic, A Princess Bride! A classic fairy tale with swordplay, giants, an evil prince, a beautiful princess and yes, some kissing!

We will be serving delicious pizza and light snacks.

*In event of inclement weather you will be notified the morning of the event.

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Basic Computer Skills
Jan
30
10:00am10:00am

Basic Computer Skills

Basic Computer Skills.jpg

Monday, January 30th and Wednesday, February 1st from 10:00 AM to 12:30 PM

ACI is offering a 2-day course on basic computer skills taught by AnnMarie Pigna-Torres, software engineer and computer instructor.

Topics to be covered: Microsoft Word, browsing the Internet, using email efficiently, and cloud storage.

Class is limited to 5 participants. Laptops will be provided.

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Blood Pressure & Blood Sugar Screenings
Jan
27
10:00am10:00am

Blood Pressure & Blood Sugar Screenings

Blood Pressure & Blood Sugar Screenings banner

ACI has teamed up with Saint Peter's University Hospital, Community Mobile Health Program to conduct free blood pressure and blood sugar screenings as part of our series of health and wellness workshops.

Light and healthy snacks will be served. Fasting is not required for this screening.

Please call Health Specialist, Jennifer Ryan at 732-289-4269 in case of inclement weather.

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New Beginning Snowflakes
Jan
25
5:30pm 5:30pm

New Beginning Snowflakes

COST: $3.00

The New Year is an opportunity for a clean slate! Come to ACI and celebrate the upcoming year with hot chocolate, conversation, and arts & crafts! Participants will have the chance to take part in an artistic New Year’s renewal activity involving beautiful paper snowflakes. You will use these snowflakes to express the parts of yourself that you want to continue to grow in the coming year, as well as releasing thoughts and beliefs about yourself that you no longer want. We look forward to helping you start your new beginning!

Accommodations made upon request.

In the event of inclement weather, you will be contacted by 4:00 PM on the day of the event.

NOTE: The program is currently full. Fill out the form below if you would like to be added to the waiting list.

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Everyday Technologies: Making Things Easier, Making Things Possible
Jan
13
10:00am10:00am

Everyday Technologies: Making Things Easier, Making Things Possible

Our smartphones and tablets are like the Swiss army knives of technology...they can do so much!

Fred Tchang from Advancing Opportunities will show you how devices such as iPads, iPhones, and Android smartphones can be used to make life easier. Whether it’s built-in accessibility features that can read your texts/emails aloud and enlarge what you see on the screen, or low-cost apps that use video to help you remember the steps in a process.

Please bring your own device! Don’t have one? That’s okay! Let us know and we can bring a loaner for you to try for free (based on availability).

Registration is now closed. Fill out the form below to be added to the waiting list and we'll contact you if anyone cancels.

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Holiday Luncheon & Shopping Trip
Dec
10
12:00pm12:00pm

Holiday Luncheon & Shopping Trip

The tradition continues! As the holidays approach us, ACI once again will have our famous end of the year gathering with old and new friends to share some fond memories!

Everyone will meet at the front entrance of Applebee’s (level 2) for lunch. Following our meal, we will have the opportunity to go shopping at stores such as: Aéropostale, American Eagle, Claire’s, DICK'S Sporting Goods, Sears, Gap, Macy’s, GameStop, & J.C. Penney.

Please bring enough money for both your meal and shopping. An average meal at Applebee’s is $15-20. Visit applebees.com/menu to see the full menu.

Transportation will not be provided. Accommodations upon request.

Registration deadline is December 5th. Snow date is December 17th.

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Alex and Ani - Charmed by Charity Fundraiser
Dec
3
2:00pm 2:00pm

Alex and Ani - Charmed by Charity Fundraiser

ACI along with Alex and Ani will be holding a Charmed by Charity event in Red Bank in which a portion of in-store sales will be donated to ACI. Help support us by coming out and purchasing some of their awesome bracelets. ACI would like to thank Alex and Ani Red Bank for their help in supporting our cause!

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