On Thursday, August 4, Palm Beach County Youth Services Department held its fifth annual employee retreat at Clayton Hutcheson Exhibit Hall/Mounts Botanical Garden. This year, the Seeds of Success Cross-Divisional Action Team coordinated the event, including the theme, Harry Potter and the World of Magic, to celebrate and honor the magical work YSD staff has done all year.
The retreat began with the excitement of YSD employees arrival and seating to their sorted Harry Potter house for the day. As the Headmaster of Ceremonies, Tevin Ali, Public Relations Specialist, welcomed all “students" to the event.
Director of Youth Services, Tammy K. Fields, expressed her gratitude to staff for their work and commitment to providing quality service to the youth and families. Following her remarks, the group watched the "YSD Year In Review" video to take in all the outstanding initiatives and work done by the department throughout the year.
Reports were given by the cross-divisional teams. After the reports, Tristan Seupersad was announced as the “Shining Light of the Year", which is the YSD equivalent to 'Employee of the Year.' Tristan's contributions as a Residential Youth Counselor at the Highridge Family Center have positively impacted the department and community. Tristan's nominator described him “As a team player, Tristan is always open to helping wherever he can. He is always hands-on with the youth residents. A youth resident went on to describe Mr. Tristan as a “father figure."
All teams participated in the Mounts Botanical “Horcrux" Scavenger Hunt to find the magically imbued objects hidden throughout the garden.
The retreat then shifted its focus on the “TriWizard Games", a series of competitive games where staff won points for their house. Self-care was practiced after the games, where the Youth Services team were provided smoothies by the Palm Beach County Employee Wellness Program, took care of succulent plants, and painted canvases to take home.
The retreat concluded with a collective staff 'class photo,' and the announcement of the winner of the 'House Cup' that was presented to the team with the most points at the end of the day. “The Seeds of Success team, chaired by Giselle Badillo and Bridget Williams did an incredible job organizing an event filled with learning, fun, and comradery" said Tammy K. Fields.