ST. MARYS — A dedicated worker with CenClear’s Community School Based Behavioral Health (CSBBH) went above and beyond to cater to St. Marys students during the COVID-19 shutdown.
Nichole Mattivi, who works as a behavioral health worker, said CSBBH service helps children with severe emotional or behavioral problems.
“They can be leading to issues at school, at home or in the community,” Mattivi said. “I work with my CSBBH team to help develop a treatment plan that is right for the child and make changes to the plan as needed.”
Her CSBBH team works mostly out of South St. Marys Street Elementary School, where Mattivi says she works with great people such as Principal Chrissy Kuhar and Vice Principal Julie Boyer.
At the start of COVID-19, St. Marys Area School District began offering meals to families in need of support, Mattivi said.
“Many of my families that I work with did not have the ability to go to the school to pick the meals up,” she said. “I felt I had to help support them by offering to drop off the meals on their doorsteps, so they had necessities they needed, and one less thing to worry about.”
Mattivi delivered around 17 meals every Monday through Friday morning until the school year ended and the meal program stopped. She also dropped off or picked up school work needed by some families.
Mattivi didn’t stop there, though. She also supplied families with different crafts and therapeutic supplies.
“We were working via video conferencing for our sessions with our kids and parents, and I felt that this helped bring some normalcy to their lives and our sessions,” she said.
Some of the students’ favorite activities included using calming/sensory bottles, painting, a “feelings charades” game, making bird feeders and role playing with magnetic dolls, Mattivi said.
“As the world was turned upside down, I felt the need to help the children and families that I work with even more,” she said. “I knew I had to support them in being able to get their basic needs met. In line with the values and mission of CenClear and SMASD, I did not hesitate to help in anyway that I could.
“I know that everyone is struggling in some way, shape or form through this pandemic, and if I can do something like deliver meals or even a smile, then I feel I have accomplished something during these troubled times.”