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 Meet the Staff at Agape Respite Care

Children and adults are cared for by trained staff committed to the mission and values of Agape Respite Care. Each staff member is carefully screened and receives orientation and training prior to providing direct care. Our care providers are paraprofessionals with training in CPR/First Aid, medication administration, gastronomy tube feedings, breathing treatments, seizures, behavior management and communication, mobility and positioning, personal care including nutrition, diet and eating and recreation. Special training in developmental disabilities, including Autism Spectrum Disorders, and many other types of conditions is provided. Agape care providers continue with on-going staff trainings through out the year. Our caring staff offers a personalized service which maximizes attention to the individual’s health, welfare and safety while providing appropriate recreational and leisure activities for their enjoyment.

Find out more about in the following staff biographies:
Sherrie Kizer   Executive Director
Agape Respite Administration

Sherrie is married to Andy Kizer of Bluffton, Indiana. They have two children, BreAnna who attends IPFW for nursing and Jacob who attends Bluffton Middle School 8th grade.

Sherrie took care of her sons special needs at birth. Jacob was born pre-mature and had a heart monitor, oxygen, and feeding tube for several years.

Sherrie found her passion for persons with special needs after caring for her own child and then by becoming a part of the Agape Respite Care team in 2002, shortly after her sons birth.

After working at Agape for several years as a care provider, Sherrie pursued her CNA and then later obtained her RN from the University of Saint Francis in 2011.

Sherrie spent 10 years working as a CNA and Nurse at Bluffton Regional Medical Center. In 2017 she found her way back to Agape Respite Care to facilitate the operations as the Executive Director.

Sherrie states "It is a blessing to be back working at a place where the people, families, and work changed my life."

Roberta Lehman   Development Director
Agape Respite Administration

Roberta “Bertie” Lehman, is the development director of Agape Respite Care, Inc. She is the wife of James “Jim” Lehman. The Lehmans have four children; two married daughters, Krista,  (Keith) Brunstrup of Berne;  Melissa (Justin) Gillette and grandson, Milesof Goshen, Indiana.  Jessica and brother, Hunter live with their parents on the family farm just outside of Berne.

Jessica has a developmental disability known as Rett Syndrome. Although Jessica needs total assistance for all of her care, she enjoys participating activities and spending time with family and friends. 

 
Bertie has a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Bluffton College and a master’s degree with a specialization in Reading from Indiana University, Bloomington. She spent a total of seven years teaching elementary school in Indianapolis and at Adams Central Community School in Monroe, Indiana. Bertie also taught one year of preschool at the Berne Nursery School.
After Jessica began experiencing developmental difficulties, Bertie organized a parent support group called, “Connections for Special Kids.” Mothers in the area, who were parenting young children with special needs met for support and to learn about resources and services. At this time there was no respite care program in the area. Agape Respite Care represents the vision of these mothers, who recognized that their parent role contained challenges beyond “typical parenting.” The mothers in this group decided if they had care giving assistance they wanted people who were trained, a place that was safe and attractive, and a program that encompassed Christian values and showed true love and compassion for their child.
 
In 1992, Bertie Lehman received support her church, First Mennonite Church in Berne, Indiana, to begin a respite program. At this time Bertie was also attending the Partners In Policy Making Class in Indianapolis. Additional training in grant writing, mediation training, parent liaison training and other seminars assisted Bertie in gaining the skills needed to be the administrator of Agape Respite Care.
 
Bertie has been a presenter at state, national and international conferences on respite care and related issues. She is actively involved in the development of the Indiana Respite Coalition, currently serving as Co-Chair.
 
When Bertie is not working at Agape she enjoys spending time with family and friends. Other interest including directing a children’s choir at church, teaching Sunday school, singing, cooking and playing games.
Jennifer Tschannen   Office Manager / Caregiver
Agape Respite Administration

Jennifer Tschannen has worked full time for Agape since 1995 as Office Manager/Careprovider. Jennifer grew up in Decatur, but now lives with her husband Michael and two sons Zachary & Lukas in Ossian.

Her related experience includes nursing courses, Health Occupation Education class and working as a CNA and Ward Clerk for five years at Adams Memorial Hospital. During her free time she likes to spend time with her family swimming or going to the movies.

Edie Coblentz   Caregiver
Agape Respite Staff

Hometown:
Geneva, IN
Education:
High School Graduate
1 year college
Experience:
 
Mother
CNA & HHA
Paraprofessional sub aid for South Adams
Start Date at Agape:
2007
When I am not working I…
I like to spend time with my family. I enjoy coaching volleyball for South Adams.

Jane Miller   Caregiver
Agape Respite Staff

Hometown:
Berne, IN
Education:
Associate (Social Work)
Experience:
 
Currently employed at SAMS as a paraprofessional
Teach CPR
Worked 8 years at Bi-County Services

Jill Suman   Caregiver
Agape Respite Staff

Hometown:
Portland, IN
Education:
Celina Sr. High Class of 92
Experience:
 
Mother
CNA and Health Aid
Client Supervisor
Residential Manager
Start Date at Agape:
2004
When I am not working I…
I love to spend time hanging out with my family, scrapbooking, crafting, gardening and bowling

Patty Schindler   Caregiver
Agape Respite Staff

Name:
Hometown:
Education:
 
Start Date at Agape:
When I am not working at Agape I...
 
Patty Schindler
Willshire, Ohio
1986 Graduate of Parkway High School National Certification of dietary Management from the University of North Dakota
2006
work full time as Assistant Food Service Director at Swiss Village Retirement Community. Any extra time I enjoy working outside, spending time with family and friends and of course...I love to shop!!
 

Susan Kelly   LPN
Agape Respite Staff

Hometown:
Bryant, IN
Education:
 
Experience:
 
LPN
CNA, Para Professional Nurse
Start Date at Agape:
1996
When I am not working I…
I like to listen to music and watch movies. Spend time with family and friends

Melinda Vaughn   Caregiver
Agape Respite Staff

Hometown:
Warren, IN
Education:
DSW from Ball State
Experience:
 
Corrections Officer
SNC
EMT
Behavioral Specialist Assistant
Group Home Trainer
Home Daycare Provider
Social Worker
Start Date at Agape:
2001
When I am not working I…
I like to spend every last minute with my kids. When they are at Grandma’s I shop-shop-shop.

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