Our Team

STAFF-Amy

Amy Ashenfelter, Clinical Consultant

Amy Ashenfelter has been working with Allies in Caring since January 2015, she serves as a clinical consultant and is also a Master level therapist. She holds a master’s in counseling and applied psychology from Rowan University and a certificate from Drexel University in applied behavior analysis and is currently pursuing BCBA certification. She has 3 soon to be step-children. Her favorite part about working for Allies in Caring is “The rapport I’ve built with the other clinicians, the opportunity to support them by processing cases, and interacting with all of my families.”

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Itzel Saldaña, Employee Relations & Compliance Specialist

Itzel Saldaña has been with Allies in Caring since October of 2018, she serves as the Connector Liaison. She currently attends Stockton University and is expecting to complete her bachelor’s degree by Spring 2020. She is majoring in Anthropology and Sociology while minoring in Migration Studies. After graduating she hopes to continue to help the Latino community and keep her focus on immigration rights. When asked what's her favorite part about working at Allies in Caring is, she said “Knowing that I form part of an organization that cares about the Latino community.

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Morgan Bowker, Service Liaison

Morgan has spent many years working and volunteering with children and adults with disabilities and has a heart for helping others. They have called Hammonton their hometown their entire life and are happy to have found a place working to support the people of this community. Morgan has been working with Allies in Caring since 2018. 

Morgan studied psychology and is currently an American Sign Language student at Rowan College at Burlington County. They have a passion for educating others about the LGBTQ+ community and the issues they face. They now live on a small farm in Winslow Township with their dachshund, Oliver.

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Sarah Thompson, Grant and Donor Relations

Sarah spent nearly all her life in Atlantic County, New Jersey, and has been a resident of Hammonton for the last 13 years. She started working with Allies in Caring in the Spring of 2020 and worked as the Executive Assistant to the Director over the previous year.

 

With her background as a legal secretary, title company processor, and content copywriter, Sarah has utilized her office and communication skills and now has eased into the role of Grant and Donor Relations Associate, growing with the organization.

 

Looking to the future and proceeding toward a master’s degree, she has her sights set on becoming an art therapist and using her love of art and counseling to work with those who need it most in the community. Sarah and her family live right in the heart of Hammonton and enjoy spending their time downtown and among the community here.

When asked what's her favorite part about working at Allies in Caring is, she said "The best part of my job with Allies in Caring is having the opportunity to work with a team of caring people who are doing great things to help the people in our communities who need it most."

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Melinda Pal Lifango, Finance Specialist

Melinda is an accountant/financial analyst with four years of professional experience.  Melinda joined Allies in Caring in June 2020. She graduated from Rowan University with a bachelor’s degree in Accounting in 2016. Melinda keeps accurate records and reconciles accounts for our organization.  She manages day-to-day financial transactions associated with AIC. She grew up in Hungary and came to the United States 10 years ago.  Melinda speaks English and Hungarian. Work-Life balance is essential to her. She is inspired daily by her husband and her babies. In her free time, she loves being outdoors, horseback riding, arts and crafts, taking trips with her family, cooking with her husband, and entertaining friends and family.

When asked what's her favorite part about working at Allies in Caring is, she said "I love the flexibility of the job and to have work-life balance; at the same time, it's also exciting and challenging. The colleagues and management are very welcoming, understanding, positive, and easy to work with. "

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Copelia Morales, Con-Vivir Community Relations Manager

Copelia grew up in Hammonton. She has worked as a volunteer for the Migrant Worker Outreach of South Jersey for seven years and currently runs a nutritional program for migrant pregnant women and young kids. She is also a Hammonton Health Coalition Coordinator, and she is part of the Hammonton Heart and Soul initiative. She attended school for phlebotomy and to become a medical assistant. Her passion has always been to help others. She is currently attending school. Copelia loves interacting with people and getting to know the community better. She strives to achieve a healthier Hispanic community, one that can be more comfortable getting involved with other groups and cultures. She joined Allies in caring as our Community Relations Manager to identify, assess, and coordinate community engagement opportunities.

When asked what's her favorite part about working at Allies in Caring, she said "My favorite part about working for AIC is that I get to do what I love helping people and bringing resources to those who don't know them. Being able to help someone and encourage them to reach their goals is essential to me."

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Michael Snyder, Program Development Manager

Michael has over forty years of experience in non-profit leadership throughout southern New Jersey. Michael’s expertise is in new program development, implementation, and management of such services. Before joining AIC, Michael led a Children's Behavioral health organization where he utilized his skill set in doing Strategic Planning, branding, change management, and forming strategic alliances.

 

When asked why he joined AIC, Michael replied he knows that AIC builds supportive relationships in people's lives and having a positive impact on people gives him no greater joy.

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Sylvia Leija, EmpoderArte Coordinator & Behavioral Technician

She is currently enrolled in the MS in Clinical Rehab Counseling at Texas Tech University School of Health Professions. Her goal is to become an LPC and continue working with youth with disabilities. For the past four years, she worked with youth in transition as a Vocational Rehab Counselor in the state of Texas, and she also worked with youth involved in the juvenile system providing family counseling. In addition, she has worked with individuals experiencing homelessness, substance abuse, mental health issues, and different disabilities.

 

It is her passion to serve others and see the changes that happen in their lives by simply being there for them and providing support. She loves spending time with her children and family, and cooking for them gives her great satisfaction. She grew up on the border with Mexico, so she has always been close to her Mexican roots. She is bilingual and considers herself blessed to read, write, and speak both in English and Spanish. 

 

When asked what's her favorite part about working at Allies in Caring, she said "hat I like most about working with Allies in Caring is that I get to do what I love most, making a difference in the lives of those most in need. I also get to be a part of an organization committed to helping me grow as a professional and as an individual."

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Diana Mendez, PR and Communications Manager

Diana is originally from Colombia. She completed her Master in Business Administration at the University of Texas at El Paso, and moved to New Jersey 8 years ago, where she lives with her husband and kids.

 

Diana helps organizations to deliver unique content experiences and to connect with their communities authentically. She designs, implements, and evaluates Allies in Caring communications and digital marketing strategy. Diana is a self-motivated leader, passionate about creating social change, with diverse experiences, including public administration, event planning, and community engagement.

 

She has strong cultural competency, and she has experience working with Latinx and Spanish-speaking communities. Diana is Bilingual in English and Spanish.

Featured Service Providers

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Karen Miguel

She was born and raised in Vineland, NJ. She comes from an immigrant family, and she is proud to say that she is a first-generation college graduate. She is bilingual, and she graduated from Stockton University (Spring 2021) with, bachelor's degree in Social Work.

 

She worked as a group leader at Vineland Public Schools. Facilitated children with homework/school work health, fitness, prevention/education, and self-esteem. Tutored children at Family Success Centers with their school work and created events to bring children, families, and the community together. Served as an interpreter for Spanish-speaking families.

 

She is happy to be working at Allies in Caring because it allows her to work with a diverse community. She has worked with children/youth for many years. It's her passion to help others because we all learn and grow from one another. 

Interns

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Galen Duff, Student Intern

Galen is actively pursuing his M.A. in forensic psychology with a focus on community health and working with individuals with disabilities. His degree is from The Chicago School of professional psychology. Galen enjoys traveling and writing. 

He will continue to expand his knowledge and skills in behavioral Therapy for children and adults with disabilities. Galen is passionate about helping others and has always wanted to work in this field where he can do just that. Galen hopes that this experience will help him better understand how to work with the behavior of children more effectively. Galen’s philosophy in life is to help as many people as he can to live their best life by dealing with the struggles that life throws at them. 

When asked what's his favorite part about interning at Allie's in Caring, he said: "What I like most about working at Allies in Caring is that it is a fantastic opportunity to increase and refine my skills as a future therapist while working with a diverse community setting."

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Stephanie Roagers, Student Intern

Stephanie was born in Bridgeton and has lived in Southern New Jersey her entire childhood. Although she has moved in the past to central New Jersey, she found her way back to Vineland to establish herself with her 6-year-old son. She completed a Behavioral Science degree through Wilmington University and is in her last year currently as an MSW student through Western New Mexico University.

Stephanie currently works for Vineland Board of Education, where she has worked for six years within special education classrooms and today works within an ASD classroom as a special education paraprofessional aide. She assists children on the spectrum with various tasks thorough out the day and helps the teacher with any behavior management and or goals that need to be met. Stephanie is currently a student intern with Allies in Caring to gain useful knowledge through her field hours that can be applied in her career after graduating with her MSW.


When asked what's her favorite part about interning at Allies in Caring, she said, "Allies in Caring employees and staff show much compassion and understanding and have been very helpful in getting me involved with working with the community." 

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Roxana Perez Nieves, Student Intern

The proud daughter of immigrant parents and her hometown of Atlantic City, Roxana Perez Nieves, is passionate about uplifting disadvantaged communities. She has dedicated her time as a certified college and career counselor, first-generation graduate, and mental health advocate to support communities holistically and with humility.
 
Roxana was educated in Atlantic City Schools and received her Bachelor's Degree from Stockton University. She is actively pursuing her M.A. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Stockton University to become a Licensed Bilingual Therapist. 
 
Roxana is excited to practice and develop her therapeutic skills at Allies in Caring, provide therapy bilingually, and work with the community in Hammonton and the surrounding area. She will also continue to expand her knowledge and skills in treatment for children & adults from underrepresented backgrounds.
 
In addition to her work, Roxana is an active board member of the Hispanic Alliance of Atlantic County and UNIDOS at Stockton University. She enjoys reading, meditating, and spending time with her family and friends in her free time. Roxana lives by the quote "No one is free, until we're all free," and believes in doing this work, we will get closer to liberation for all.

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Rachael Donnelly, Student Intern

Rachael is currently pursuing her master's in social work at Stockton University. She will graduate in May 2022! She graduated in May 2021 with her bachelor's in social work with a childhood studies minor. In addition, Rachael has spent a couple of years volunteering in her local community through the fire department and youth baseball. Rachael is passionate about working with children and helping families reach their full potential. 

Rachael hopes to work in healthcare as she recognizes her role in helping families after a traumatic experience. Another thing Rachael loves is promoting self-care. As for her self-care, you can find her watching Christmas Hallmark movies with her dog. 

When asked what's her favorite part about interning at Allies in Caring, she said, "I enjoy my internship with Allies in Caring because I work with such passionate people who want to help anybody and everybody, which relates to who I am as a person."