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Purdys-Based Friends Of Karen Expands Staff

Natalia Echeverri, Randi Glassman and Sarah Coakley, pictured clockwise from left, have joined the staff of Purdys Friends of Karen.
Natalia Echeverri, Randi Glassman and Sarah Coakley, pictured clockwise from left, have joined the staff of Purdys Friends of Karen. Photo Credit: Contributed

NORTH SALEM, N.Y. – Purdys' Friends of Karen, the only charitable organization in the tri-state area providing services and programs for the families of children with life-threatening illnesses, has added three new professionals to its staff.

Sarah M. Coakley, LMSW, has worked with special needs children for 10 years, most recently at the Hallen School in New Rochelle. She has also been a program manager for Big Brothers/Big Sisters. Her responsibilities with Friends of Karen will take her primarily to the Bronx and Brooklyn, where nearly 30 percent of Friends of Karen families live.

Natalia Echeverri, MSW, a native of Colombia, will be responsible for the many Friends of Karen families whose primary language is Spanish. She has worked in curriculum development, play therapy and crisis intervention.

Randi Glassman, formerly the family liaison for the Embrace Kids Foundation (an affiliate of the Robert Wood Johnson University Children’s Hospital and the Cancer Institute of New Jersey), worked closely with social workers, counselors and child life specialists and acted as liaison between families and staff. She will be managing the intake of families.

“We get about 25 calls every month from families needing our help,” said Rhonda Ryan, director of Friends of Karen’s family support services. During 2012, Friends of Karen assisted 554 families, more than ever before.

Friends of Karen, founded in 1978, has touched the lives of more than 12,000 children since its inception. Charity Navigator, an independent organization that evaluates thousands of American charities for their financial responsibility and effectiveness, has awarded Friends of Karen its highest rating.

For more information, go to the website or call 914-617-4040.

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