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About Us

The goal of the organization is to keep "Healthy Families, Safe at Home." Bergen’s Promise will provide exceptional care management services to keep youth and families physically and emotionally safe.

Wraparound care is an individualized planning process for care management that leverages the Child and Family Team and builds on a family's and community's unique strengths, values and resources.

Our Behavioral Health Home services support youth with chronic co-occurring behavioral and medical health issues and enhances the Wraparound Model of Care to integrate both medical and behavioral health care.

The key to successful wraparound is a team of family and community members guided by an experienced care manager who works to formulate the ideal array of local services & activities to benefit a child's growth and foster future success.

Healthy Families, Safe at Home

Our organization is accredited through the Commission on Accreditation for Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) (English/Spanish). Our services are built on each family’s strengths and delivered through a strong, coordinated network of community based providers. Leveraging the core values below, we strive to provide the highest quality of care that will produce the most positive results for the youth and families we serve.

  • Youth and Family Safety - We value keeping youth and families physically and emotionally safe. We do everything possible to protect the families we serve.
  • Accountability - We use our resources effectively to maximize the benefit to our youth and families. Accountability is best achieved through a shared sense of ownership and an individual sense of initiative.
  • Performance Improvement Culture - A culture of performance improvement is achieved through objectivity, introspection, self-discipline, openness to change and focus.
  • Strength based Philosophy - Our services are built on the family's strengths and lead to solutions that address the family's unique needs.
  • Human Resources - Our staff is the central asset in keeping healthy families safe at home. We are committed to selective and diverse recruiting; professional development; goal oriented supervision; high staff morale; and retention through the recognition of exemplary performance.
  • Partner Collaboration - We value competent, efficient, and effective community based care providers and resource partners, who offer diverse services that meet the various clinical and cultural needs of our youth and families. We expect our "Partners" to demonstrate teamwork, quality assurance and collaboration.

Care Management Services

The Wraparound Model of Care is the Heart of Our Promise to Each Child and Family We Serve

Bergen's Promise offers unique, community-based wraparound services to families who have children with emotional, behavioral, developmental, mental health, and substance abuse needs.

Keeping children healthy and safe in their home is our goal.

Watch the short video on the right and download the guide below to learn more about how the wraparound process works to help plan and implement services and supports for your child or youth and family.    Access the Spanish version of the Wraparound Family Guide.  

Wraparound Family Guide Wraparound Family Guide (5043 KB)

The Child and Family Team is Our Key to Consistently Successful Wraparound Care

Each Child and Family team is comprised of people genuinely care about your child’s success. Loving relatives, close friends, teachers, clergy, care providers, and sometimes even the local soccer coach, all help to formulate the right mix of structure, guidance and support to help foster progress and future success.  Who would YOU include on your Child and Family Team?

Families Share Their Experiences
Child and Family Team

"Behavioral Health Home" Enhances Wraparound Care

Families receiving Bergen's Promise support that have a youth with specific chronic medical health issues, and a behavioral health challenge, are now provided with our Behavior Health Home (BHH) medical care services that includes a highly-trained nurse or Wellness educator as part of the Child and Family Team.  This enhanced team allows for better coordination of a child's unique physical, medical and behavioral health care needs.

Read Our BHH FAQ

Understanding the
New Jersey Children's System of Care

Watch the video below to better understand the system of care, how it helps children get access to the help they need, and how your family can benefit from the services it offers.


The Bergen's Promise Leadership Team

Executive Management

Photo of Dean Pastras
Dean Pastras
Executive Director
Photo of Michael Maliavsky
Michael Maliavsky
Business Manager / CFO
Photo of Shelisa Foster
Shelisa Foster
Chief Operating Officer


Photo of Christa Ten Cate
Christa Ten Cate
Director of Care Management; *Education Liaison
Photo of Crystal Wytenus
Crystal Wytenus
Director of Care Management; *Substance Treatment Liaison
Photo of Diane Ristaino
Diane Ristaino
Director of Quality Assurance
Photo of Jan Schlaier
Jan Schlaier
Director of Health Services; *Integrated Care Liaison
Photo of Kathy Werheim
Kathy Werheim
Director of Community Resources

Care Management Supervisors

Photo of Ashley Sloan
Ashley Sloan
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Desiree Hanna
Desiree Hanna
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Devin DeFoe
Devin DeFoe
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Elizabeth Panissidi
Elizabeth Panissidi
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Errol Knight
Errol Knight
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Fajr Salaam-Goodwin
Fajr Salaam-Goodwin
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Gittel Danzig
Gittel Danzig
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Jennifer Boyd
Jennifer Boyd
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of John Dixon
John Dixon
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Jose Rodriguez
Jose Rodriguez
Clinical Consultant
Photo of Katrina Seigerman
Katrina Seigerman
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Krystal Martinez
Krystal Martinez
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Mitzi Day
Mitzi Day
Psy. D, LSW, MSW
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Ruth Banegas
Ruth Banegas
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Shaista Sowell
Shaista Sowell
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Whitney Chiriboga-Espinales
Whitney Chiriboga-Espinales
Care Manager Supervisor


Photo of Judy Nelson
Judy Nelson
Human Resource Manager
Photo of Kimberly Theiler
Kimberly Theiler
Executive Assistant / Office Manager

Our Children and Families Live in Your District

2019 By School District

Map of Bergen County showing where enrollees live

2019 By Legislative District

Map of Bergen County showing where enrollees live

In 2019, we also served 150 youth outside Bergen County. Youth outside Bergen county are usually their own guardians and participating in out-of-home treatment.

the Bergen's Promise 2017 Annual Report cover laying on a desktop

Board of Trustees

The Bergen's Promise Trustees are comprised of parents of children with emotional, behavioral or developmental issues and are each personally committed to improving the quality of care available to families in Bergen County.

  • Jeffrey Kahn - President

  • Ann Marie Lazarus - Trustee

  • Lucien Duquette - Trustee

  • Joseph J. Cafaro - Trustee