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Monday, April 13, 2020

A Message from Kathleen Stauffer,

CEO of The Arc Eastern Connecticut


Good Morning Everyone! 


Please continue to refer to our resource links, which are updated regularly at, as well as The United Way’s 211 information site and CT’s COVID-19 web page for your latest information. We want to make sure you have all the support you need in these challenging times, and we realize the situation is not optimal by any means. Please know that YOU are valued!

News at The Arc ECT this Week

We’re pleased to announce that Elizabeth Korineck is now our Chief Talent Officer. Elizabeth has worked in Human Resources for 6 years now, and we are grateful for her expertise and knowledge of the agency, especially at this crucial time. “I’m honored to be here . . . and very excited,” she said during what these

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days is a rare free moment. “I’m so grateful for this opportunity. Starting this position at this time . . . well, I consider it my trial by fire. If I can handle this, then I think I can handle anything!” she laughs. “My biggest concern right now is for our staff who are filing for Unemployment; I’m who they can turn to with help navigating the process, since that system is so jammed right now. I try to be there for everyone, and be supportive, and help them get everything they need, because I know how scary and frustrating this can be. That’s my main goal right now—to help everyone get through this.” Please reach out to Elizabeth by email at or by phone 860-889-4435 ext. 111.

Answers from The Arc Podcast

Please listen to our first "Answers from The Arc" podcast" The podcast link is at the top of this page and also available on The Arc ECT Facebook page.    I hope you find this information helpful.  We will plan to do another segment soon.  Please submit your questions for future podcasts to  Our residential programs are fully functional and, as always, our amazing and dedicated staff keep them operating 24/7 with every health and safety precaution in place.



Creativity’s the name of the game as we continue to support people in our day, employment and in-home supports programs. Kudos to our team and our participants in Employment who have found a great way to keep friends and peers connected during program closures via the ZooRoom app. It’s easy to download on a cell phone, so participants, team members, friends and parents can video chat with each other or just “drop in” to say hi.  If you are interested in creating a zoo room for your department, please contact your supervisor.  We can help to navigate the process, create a zoo room and get everyone linked.


Please follow the advice of our state and local officials and do what you can to keep yourself and those around you safe and healthy.


See you next Monday!

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our latest


A photo from a recent ZooRoom chat with ETC.


Cheesy Picnic


From Elizabeth Korineck,
Chief Talent Officer


New Chief Talent Officer Elizabeth has more than HR expertise up her sleeve—she’s also an extraordinary cook and baker and was delighted to share one of her favorite recipes with everyone. “My personal cookbook is full of old family recipes that fall into three categories—desserts, appetizers, and comfort food. This one falls into the ‘comforting’ category and is courtesy of Ree Drummond. It’s made with common ingredients, can be thrown together quickly, is satisfying, and can feed a crowd. It’s a gigantic mess of carbs and cheese, and that’s why it’s so darn good.”


  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter

  • One 28 – to 32-ounce bag frozen hash browns

  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped

  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • 2 cups chicken broth

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon pepper

  • 1 ½ cups grated Monterey Jack cheese

  • ½ cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese

  • 1 cup sour cream

  • 2 cups kettle-cooked potato chips

  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease a 9 x 13” baking dish with 1 tablespoon of the butter.  Take the potatoes out of the freezer while you are preparing the rest of the ingredients.

Heat a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat, then melt 6 tablespoons of the butter.  Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until it starts to soften, 3 to 4 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium, sprinkle the flour over the onion and stir to incorporate.  Cook for a minute or two, stirring constantly, but do not let it brown too much.

Whisk in the milk, making sure to get out all the lumps.

Add the broth and whisk again if there are still lumps.  Bring the mixture to a simmer and let it thicken as you whisk, about 3 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.

Remove from the heat and add the Monterey Jack, Cheddar, and sour cream.

Add the hash browns and fold everything together.

Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish and set it aside.

Melt the remaining 1 tablespoon butter.  Put the potato chips and the Parmesan in a bowl.

Crush the potato chips using a wooden spoon or your hands.  Pour the melted butter and toss the crumbs to coat.

Sprinkle the crumb mixture over the potatoes and cover the baking dish with foil.  Bake for 20 minutes, then remove the foil and bake until golden brown on top and bubbling around the edges, about 15 minutes more.

Let it rest for 15 minutes before serving. Serves 12


Virtual Adventures

Our ACTIVITIES FOR YOU link and our COMMUNITY RESOURCES link are two places to find important information.  You can always access them here on our PANDEMIC UPDATES PAGE

and on the HOME PAGE of our website.  We add information regularly and welcome your ideas.


Personal Protective Equipment for COVID-19 Care

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