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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.

Professionalism • Talent Engagement & Development • Health & Safety • Collaboration • Cultural Diversity

Bergen's Promise Agency Values

Introduction

Bergen's Promise COO, Shelisa Foster, provides a brief introduction to the agency's value structure.

Explore More Agency Values

Care Management Services

The Wraparound Model of Care

It's 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.

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

Integrated Care Enhances Wraparound

All 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.

Here's a short video introduction to our BHH program from one of our Health & Wellness Educators. (Click the CC button at the bottom of the video for other languages.)

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
ACSW, LCSW
Executive Director
Photo of Michael Maliavsky
Michael Maliavsky
CAE, IOM
Business Manager / CFO
Photo of Shelisa Foster
Shelisa Foster
MA, LPC, NCC  
Chief Operating Officer

Directors

Photo of Christa Ten Cate
Christa Ten Cate
MA, LAC, CSW  
Director of Care Management; *Education Liaison
Photo of Crystal Wytenus
Crystal Wytenus
MA, LPC, LCADC, NCC
Director of Care Management; *Substance Treatment Liaison
Photo of Cynthia Castañeda
Cynthia Castañeda
MA LPC ACS
Director of Care Management
Photo of Diane Ristaino
Diane Ristaino
JD  
Director of Quality Assurance
Photo of Jan Schlaier
Jan Schlaier
Edc.D, FNP-BC
Director of Health Services; *Integrated Care Liaison
Photo of Kathy Werheim
Kathy Werheim
MA, MPA  
Director of Community Resources

Care Management Supervisors

Photo of Ashley Sloan
Ashley Sloan
LSW, LMSW
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Desiree McMahon
Desiree McMahon
MA, NCC, LAC
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Devin DeFoe
Devin DeFoe
LSW, LMSW
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Elizabeth Panissidi
Elizabeth Panissidi
LCSW
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Gittel Danzig
Gittel Danzig
LSW, LMSW
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Jennifer Boyd
Jennifer Boyd
MSW, LSW
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of John Dixon
John Dixon
MSW, LCSW, DRCC
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Jose Rodriguez
Jose Rodriguez
MA, LPC, LCADC
Clinical Consultant
Photo of Krystal Martinez
Krystal Martinez
MSW, LMSW
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Patrick Millien
Patrick Millien
MS ED
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Ruth Banegas
Ruth Banegas
LSW, LMSW
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Shaista Sowell
Shaista Sowell
MS, LAC
Care Manager Supervisor
Photo of Shekinah Williams
Shekinah Williams
MSW, LSW
Care Manager Supervisor

Operations

Photo of Kimberly Theiler
Kimberly Theiler
BS
Executive Assistant / Office Manager

Our Children and Families Live in Your District

2020 By School District

Map of Bergen County showing where enrollees live

2020 By Legislative District

Map of Bergen County showing where enrollees live

In 2020, we also served 135 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