Lackawanna County System of Care Hosts a My System of Care Superhero Contest

Raising Awareness about the Importance and Impact of
Human/Social Service Professionals

March is National Professional Social Work month and The Lackawanna County System of Care (SOC) is joining in the celebrations by hosting a “My System of Care Superhero” Contest. The goal of the contest is to tackle human and social service staff recruitment issues by raising awareness of the positive impact of human/social service professionals and the need for these types of workers in our community.

Sponsored by the United Way of Lackawanna & Wayne Counties and Best Buy Dickson City, the “My System of Care Superhero” Contest is part of the Lackawanna County SOC’s efforts to improve staff recruitment in the human/social services field. There is a growing need for human and social service professionals, including direct service professionals, case managers, social workers, licensed social workers and counselors in our community. Without these key positions, people will not be able to receive the care they need to address social concerns and for us to have a healthy and thriving community.

The Lackawanna County SOC efforts include outreach to high school and college students to introduce them to the human services field and the variety of populations they can serve – children, at-risk youth, older adults, behavioral health, intellectual disabilities and more. Additionally, PA Career Link ® will host a career event – “Social Services in Today’s Workforce” on Wednesday, March 18, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. There will be a keynote speaker and break-out sessions where potential employees and employers will have the opportunity to learn about the field and current openings.
Children, youth, young adults, and parents/caregivers are encouraged to share how a social work superhero helped change their life. To participate in the “My System of Care Superhero” contest, nominate a person who has made an impact on your life to be your System of Care Superhero. The contest will begin on January 20. Entries can be submitted in writing, artwork or video to show how social service workers played a valuable role in the lives of the youth and families in our community. Submissions with the attached application can be sent to “My System of Care Superhero” Contest, c/o Office of Youth and Family Services, 123 Wyoming Avenue, 4th Floor, Scranton, PA 18503, or emailed to [email protected], or uploaded to the website at

Submissions are due by Friday, February 28. Winners will be announced on March 18 at the Lackawanna County Government Center. Prizes will be awarded in multiple age groups. We will also recognize both the person who nominated a System of Care Superhero and the SOC Superhero, if named.
For more information, check out our website

About the Lackawanna County System of Care
Lackawanna County System of Care (SOC) is an equal partnership of youth, families, and service providers committed to coordinating and enhancing community resources to support all people to thrive in Lackawanna County. The County’s SOC has been meeting since 2016 as part of the PA System of Care Partnership and has more than 30 human and social service organizations that meet monthly to discuss successes and to address concerns regarding the child serving systems in Lackawanna County. The goal is to have greater youth and family participation to help create solutions to problems from their life experience.
For more information about Lackawanna County System of Care, contact Lori Chaffers at either [email protected] or (570) 963-6781, Ext 1192.

UPS Group Makes Backpacks Donation To Youth & Family Services

Staff members from the Lackawanna County Office of Youth & Family Services and representatives from the UPS Women’s Leadership Development group prepare to distribute backpacks and supplies to children and families served by the agency. Forty backpacks were donated. This is the second time this year that UPS-related groups provided generous support to the agency.

CYS Backpacks From UPS Pix

Adopt-An-Angel Program Needs Sponsors

The Adopt-An-Angel Program of Lackawanna County’s Children & Youth Services (CYS) needs the community’s help in order to grant area youngsters’ their Christmas wishes.

There are over 100 children still left without sponsors for the holiday season.  The program provides assistance to children ranging in age from birth to 21 years old. 

CYS staff asks that individuals or groups spend about $100 per child when working off a youngster’s wish list.  Aside from the unwrapped gift(s), the program also accepts monetary donations or gift cards. 

To participate in this long-standing tradition, please contact Gloria Liuzzo at 570-963-6781,  ext. 1301, or Lisa Sohara at 570-963-6781, ext. 1188.  They will be able to provide the program’s guidelines and the range of children to “adopt” in an effort to make their season bright.

County To Light Courthouse Tree On December 6

The official lighting of the Lackawanna County Christmas tree will be held on Thursday, December 6, at 6 PM at the flag plaza on North Washington Avenue. 

The festive event will have something for everyone – refreshments, carols, candy canes and horse-drawn carriage rides throughout the heart of central city. 

The winners of Scranton Tomorrow’s Holiday Window Decorating Showcase will also be announced. 

According to the Lackawanna County Commissioners Corey D. O’Brien, Jim Wansacz and Patrick M. O’Malley, the ceremony will commence at 5:45 PM with Christmas carols sung by Robert Dale Chorale. 

At 6 PM, a brief program will be conducted with a welcome and remarks by the Commissioners. 

Then, at approximately 6:20 PM, the County tree will be lit, adding to the glow of the holiday season. 

The Robert Dale Chorale will then lead the gathering in Christmas songs once again. 

The program will close with the announcement of the winners of Scranton Tomorrow’s decorating showcase. 

The horse-drawn carriage rides will run from 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM under the direction of Jesse Van Deusen.  The route will go from North Washington Avenue by the Courthouse down Spruce Street, over to Wyoming Avenue, then up Linden Street and back over to the front of the Courthouse.   

The rides will be free to all who make a donation to the “Adopt-A-Angel” program, which provides gifts to underprivileged youngsters in the County’s Children & Youth Services network. 

The tree lighting ceremony received tremendous community and corporate support.  The Commissioners gratefully acknowledge:

  • PPL Electric Utilities for the $1,000 donation made through Scranton Tomorrow for the decorations and candles in the windows at the Courthouse.
  • Urban Electric who provided vehicles and manpower to hang decorations around the square.
  • Joshua Mast and Paul Blackledge from The Colonnade for decorating the poles surrounding Courthouse Square.  The two gentlemen are part of the downtown Scranton holiday décor effort facilitated by the Scranton Tomorrow Holiday Planning Committee and the local downtown business owners. 
  • UNICO Scranton Chapter and The LaFesta Italiana of Lackawanna County for the donation and serving of coffee, tea, hot chocolate and cookies to those in attendance.
  • Mr. Joseph Gentile, Sr., for transport services.