Marrakech
6 Lunar Drive
Woodbridge CT 06525
Contact Information
Address 6 Lunar Drive
Woodbridge, CT 06525-
Telephone (203) 389-2970 x
Fax 203-397-0658
E-mail contact@Marrakechinc.org
Web and Social Media
Mission
Mission Statement
To provide residential, employment, support, referral, and advocacy services to individuals with disabilities and people with similar service needs to assist them in exercising their human rights as citizens and contributing members of society.
At A Glance
Year of Incorporation 1971
Organization's type of tax exempt status Public Supported Charity
Organization received a competitive grant from the community foundation in the past five years Yes
Leadership
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Heather Ivy LaTorra
Board Chair Mr. Steven P. Shwartz
Board Chair Company Affiliation CTO Consulting LLC.
Financial Summary
 
Projected Revenue $38,646,218.00
Projected Expenses $38,407,773.00
Statements
Mission
Mission Statement
To provide residential, employment, support, referral, and advocacy services to individuals with disabilities and people with similar service needs to assist them in exercising their human rights as citizens and contributing members of society.
Background Marrakech, Inc. began, as did the 1970's, with a flight of fancy, a dream and a plan. It was a crusade to prove a point, the brainchild of two young Yale undergraduates. Susan Waisbren and Francie Brody were the founders of Marrakech, Inc. Marrakech began when the two realized that New Haven needed a halfway house for young women with retardation and as their belief developed that any individual with retardation who had a desire to live in the community had the right to.

It all started with a young woman named Valerie Chain. Susan had met Valerie through Yale Big Brothers/Big Sisters and the New Haven Regional Center that has long since closed. Susan and Francie came to know Valerie's friends as well. They soon realized how capable these young New Haven women with mild mental retardation were, and how they would thrive in a halfway house. There were no halfway houses in Connecticut then. The New Haven Regional Center had been trying to begin a group home for five years.

Susan and Francie were unencumbered by any foreknowledge of the frustration and bureaucracy they would be facing. They thought it was simple: New Haven needed a halfway house and they would start one. With the guidance of the Regional Center staff and Dr. Seymour Sarason of the Yale Psycho-Educational Clinic, they did just that. Marrakech House opened as a summer pilot program on June 20, 1971, after three months of careful preparation. Eight young women, including Valerie, spent the summer in a sublet, supervised apartment on Crown Street.

Today, Marrakech, Inc. is a private, nonprofit corporation serving over 1,900 men, women, and children who face mental, economic, physical, and psychiatric barriers, through a range of programs designed to meet housing, employment, training, and community participation needs. Supported by a staff of almost 800, Marrakech, Inc. offers case management and advocacy; family support services; highly individualized independent living support services; nineteen state-licensed group homes; employment programs; community programs; and safe, affordable, accessible housing. With programs and services located throughout the state of Connecticut, the focus of the organization has expanded to support people with behavioral health issues; individuals with challenging behaviors; families with complex needs; adults who are considering recovery from addictions; people who are homeless, un-employed, and under-employed; families of low income; and at risk youth and students
Impact

Goals for 2015

  1. Continue to expand upon our social enterprises that provide people with meaningful employment and training. Specifically, we are working on improvements to our Village Café and the expansion of our Caning Studio to encompass more arts-based employment

  2. Increase our capacity (private and public funding, persons served, community awareness) by carrying out marketing and communication strategies set forth by a newly created marketing plan.

  3. Develop a plan and corresponding strategies to become less reliant on state funding in the future

  4. Expand upon our existing person-centered philosophy to initiate an organizational culture change that ensures all functions and policies that relate back to persons supported are done so with this approach

  5. Begin phase 1 our technology upgrade (rewiring, server migration and phone system upgrade) with funds awarded by the State of Connecticut and develop a more concrete plan for phase 2 (computer hardware)

 

Successes in 2014

  1. After 27 years, Marrakech successfully transitioned to a new President/CEO and an overall leadership restructure in July of 2014.

  2. Marrakech was chosen by both the Department of Developmental Services and the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services to take part in pilot programs that will expand person-centeredness in services across the state of Connecticut.

  3. Marrakech was awarded over $500,000 from the Office of Policy Management to complete the first phase of a technology upgrade in 2015 as well as to implement a new electronic case management/documentation system for several of our program areas.

  4. Marrakech put out an RFQ, identified and partnered with a marketing consultant to assist us with the development of an effective marketing plan, which was delivered in March of 2015.

  5. Marrakech worked with families as well as the State to develop creative programming that best meets the unique needs of people we support.

Needs

Top 5 Pressing Needs

  1. We need to complete the technology upgrade to eliminate service interruptions, increased amounts of spam email and phones that can no longer be serviced.

  2. We need to develop funds for necessary capital improvements to our buildings, including those that improve accessibility.

  3. We need to reduce our dependence on state funding so that we may expand private pay services at a reasonable cost and have ongoing support for our unfunded or underfunded areas such as our Quality of Life programming.

  4. We need to transition all programs to 100% electronic documentation so that we can better manage and report on individual and program outcomes.

  5. We need to have access to more safe and affordable housing so that we better assist individuals who need emergency placements to avoid homelessness or other less favorable placements.

CEO Statement

 

Marrakech has been providing person centered, unique, and cost conscious human services for children and adults, with and without disabilities, in Connecticut for over 43 years.  

I have been working at Marrakech for the past 29 years. In July 2014, I was honored to be appointed the President and CEO of this remarkable organization.

I lived the transformation that Marrakech made from a small, mission focused organization, supporting adults with developmental disabilities and/or mental illness in the community to one of the largest, most diverse, non-profit organizations in Connecticut, with an expanded mission. Our caring, inclusive and supportive team serves over 1,300 people a year. They are our neighbors with disabilities, our children who need homes, our friends battling with addiction, homelessness, and mental illness, and our community members who need to acquire skills to find a job or make ends meet.

We do this by providing homes, building skills, supporting families and helping people reach their potential. The result: stronger communities.

We are thankful to be able to call upon our community and corporate partners who share our vision for collaboration, the pooling of resources, job placement, mentorship opportunities and for donations. We also work closely with our State Partners in developing cost effective solutions.

Balancing mission and financial limitations, which have been growing fast for the past several years, is truly a challenge that we creatively attack on a daily basis. 

Empowering people does not start and stop with the individuals we provide supports to, we consciously support our own (900) staff in career development, home ownership, education and training which also in turn builds our communities. 

It is tremendously satisfying to work for our consumers, our staff and other stakeholders and ultimately for our community at large.   

Heather LaTorra

President and CEO

 

 
Board Chair Statement

It is my honor and privilege to be the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Marrakech. As someone who spends his working time on for-profit activities, it is always a breath of fresh air to interact with the Marrakech staff and consumers. The Marrakech management team and employees have dedicated their careers to helping others and they do in such a spirited fashion that it is always an invigorating experience. 

I became interested in Marrakech because I have a daughter with an intellectual disability. I began to learn about the organization, meet the staff and consumers, and very quickly realized that Marrakech is a very special organization. It takes a special kind of person to work with people that have special needs. And it takes a really special kind of person to do this year after year as a career. One of the remarkable characteristics of Marrakech is the number of individuals that have long-service tenure with Marrakech. These individuals are honored each year and I am always amazed at the number of 5, 10, 15, 20, and even 25-year employees. These are truly special individuals and I am proud to be associated with them.

We have an all-volunteer Board at Marrakech. Board members include professionals from various disciplines as well as parents and family members of Marrakech consumers.

From a governance perspective, most Board members serve on committees that oversee areas including Finance, Strategic Planning,Development, and Board Membership. The Finance Committee reviews financial statements every other month, drills down into key financial topics with the executive team, and oversees executive compensation. Progress on Strategic Planning and Development goals and objectives are reviewed at every Board Meeting. The Nominating Committee oversees Board Membership and attempts to find Board Members that meet the goals set by the Strategic Planning Committee for Board composition.

The Board works very closely with the CEO of Marrakech, Heather LaTorra, and other executive staff. I know I speak for the entire Board when I say that we are very lucky to have an executive of such high integrity and competence. 

Service Categories
Primary Organization Category Mental Health & Crisis Intervention / Residential Mental Health Treatment
Secondary Organization Category Employment / Employment Preparation & Procurement
Areas Served
Ansonia
Bethany
Branford
Cheshire
Derby
East Haven
Guilford
Hamden
Lower Naugatuck Valley
Madison
Milford
New Haven
North Branford
North Haven
Orange
Oxford
Seymour
Shelton
Shoreline
State wide
Wallingford
West Haven
Woodbridge
Programs
Description The Work Learn Programs, located in New Haven, and Waterbury are funded by the Department of Children and Families . ECE/BCE provides services for youth, ages fourteen to twenty-three years old, who are currently in or transitioning from foster care services. This program provides educational, vocational, employment, financial literacy, life skills, personal and community connections, and other support services. Youth also have the opportunity to take part in onsite youth businesses as well as community internships and receive a modest stipend as compensation for their work.

Once a youth has successfully completed an internship, he or she may begin to look for community employment. In order to be referred to this phase of service, the youth must demonstrate the skills and ability to work independently in the community (mastery of life skills, good communication and vocational skills, transportation plan, etc.). The youth will work with the job developer to find employment.

Population Served At-Risk Populations / /
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service.
Graduation from High School, interaction with healthy adult role models, establishing finaincial goal, acquiring life skills, leadership development, and employment skills.  Participation in community service projects. 
 
The goal of the program is for of the youth to aquire the skills they need to be productive participating members of society.
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state.
The programs goals are to help young people achieve success in education, employment, and life skills.
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact.
This program is monitered by the Department of Children and Families. An extensive data base has been established to track individual participants activities and results on a quarterly basis.
Examples of Program SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success.
The Department of Children and Families Services chose Marrakech to expand the program into the Waterbury area.  Marrakech is the only agency to have two locations.  Marrakech is being viewed as the model program for the State.
Description The Academy for Human Service Training (AHST)prepares individuals for entry-level careers in the Human Service or Customer Service fields through a combination of classroom and hands-on training. The program provides occupational skills training, assistance with basic education needs, case management, as well as job placement and retention activities. Instructors for this program are typically managers or administrators in the human service field who have participated in Train the Trainer activities to be eligible to teach certification and other specialized course or who have the direct experience and knowledge about the topic being addressed. Follow up services are provided post-graduation for a minimum of 90 days up to 1 full year. Classes are held Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. and generally operate on a 12-week cycle.
Population Served Unemployed, Underemployed, Dislocated / Adults /
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service.
Students will graduate with a wide range of skills and certifications.  In addition to these certifications the students willl be required to complete the National Customer Service assessment in order to obtain this nationally recognized credential.
 
Upon completion of the porogram students receive case management services and coaching and assitance with aquiring employment.
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state.
Training for individuals who are unemployed or underemployed to work in entry level positions in the Customer Service and Human Services field. The compentancy based curriculum is designed to provide broad based exposure, education and experience in many areas of Human Service, but with a focus on developmental disabilities, and customer service.
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact.
This program is monitered by Connecticut Works and the Department of Labor.
Examples of Program SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success.
Marrakech has had several Academy graduates progress into senior management roles.  The goal of Marrakech is to higher at least 50% of the graduating class, and assist in placing the additional graduates with other Human Services agencies.
Description  The Independent Living Support Services division of the residential services department is a comprehensive, multifaceted program that designs highly individualized supported living arrangements for individuals with disabilities. Supports range from a few hours per week to 24/7 support to individuals in their own apartments. The program strives in promoting choice, self-determination, independence, self-respect and assists the person to be a contributing member of their community.
ILSS staff and case managers collaborate with funding sources, parents/guardians, nursing services, clinical supports, and day and social programs to achieve established Individual Planning goals. The individual is included in this process and assists in creating goals focused on increasing quality of life, discovering strengths to successfully live independently in the community, promoting community access, maximizing opportunities to socialize, and planning ahead for the future.
 
Population Served People/Families with People of Developmental Disabilities / / Adults
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service.

To establish more traditional and non-traditional living arrangements in order to provide services to more individuals in need and to maximize community and agency resources to increase the number of holiday/special event functions that will decrease the social isolation of consumers.

Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state.
Learning to live independently in the community developing life skills such as employment, cooking, cleaning, and finaincial literacy
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact.
Department of Developmental Services meets every six months with the case managers to evaluate program success and develop future goals for each individual receiving support.
Examples of Program SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success.
Two consumers were married in the summer of 2010, exhibiting personal growth due to the support they received at Marrakech.
Description The residential department's group home services component is a multi-faceted program serving adults with developmental disabilities. Individuals with multiple needs are served in 19 twenty four hour supported group homes. With the ultimate goal of increased independence, all services plans are individualized and person centered. All group homes are funded through the Connecticut Department of Developmental Services. Referrals for placement must come through the respective regions of the Department of Disabilities.
Population Served People/Families with People of Developmental Disabilities / / Adults
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact.
The program is monitored regularly by the State of Connecticut Department of Disabilities.  Goals, plans, and measurements are developed for each individual and reviewed by case managers.
Description  

The ABI department provides services to individuals who qualify for the Connecticut ABI waiver program under Title 19. Services provided include pre-vocational skills, independent living skills training (ILST), case management, supported employment, companion services, respite services, family training and community living support services. Service plans are individualized to the persons being served and may range from a few hours per week to 24/7 support. Marrakech does not maintain a waitlist for services. However, there is typically a short period of time between point of referral and start of services while we identify and hire qualified staff or while housing is being located. Services are available statewide.

Population Served / /
Program Comments
CEO Comments

Programs Provided by Marrakech, Inc.

Academy for Human Service Training

Acquired Brain Injury Services

Children and Youth Services

Community-Based Life Skills Program

Community Experience Program

Family Supports and Respite Services

Group Homes (ICF and CLA)

Independent Living Support Services (CSS and SLS)

Outreach and Engagement Case Management Services

Personal Care Assistance Services

Supported Employment Program

SHP Vocational Services

Taking Initiative Center

Vocational Rehabilitation Program

Work/Learn Centers

Work Services

Young Adult Services

CEO/Executive Director
Ms. Heather Ivy LaTorra
Term Start July 2014
Email hlatorra@Marrakechinc.org
Staff
Number of Full Time Staff 578
Number of Part Time Staff 341
Number of Volunteers 47
Number of Contract Staff 0
Staff Retention Rate 91%
Staff Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 643
Asian American/Pacific Islander 2
Caucasian 160
Hispanic/Latino 85
Native American/American Indian 1
Other 28 Two or more ethnicities
Staff Demographics - Gender
Male 283
Female 636
Unspecified 0
Former CEOs and Terms
NameTerm
Mr. Francis E. McCarthy June 1987 - June
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Collaborations
1. As the leading organization within our Taking Initiative Center (TIC), we collaborate with Easter Seals and the APT Foundation.
2. We collaborate with Gateway Community College and for developing a better system of identifying educational needs of youth in foster care prior to their 1st semester of college to encourage them to reach their needs and goals.
 
Affiliations
AffiliationYear
Connecticut Association of Nonprofits1990
Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce1988
Board Chair
Mr. Steven P. Shwartz
Company Affiliation CTO Consulting LLC.
Term Jan 2009 to Jan 2018
Email sshwartz@hotmail.com
Board of Directors
NameAffiliation
Ms. Ann Arpino CPAMarcum LLP
Mr. Louis J. Celentano Retired
Ms. Lisa C. Diggs UIL Holdings Corporation
Mr. Jeffrey Euben Yale University
Ms. Kathleen Koenig MSN, APRNYale Child Study Center
Ms. Suzanne Letso Connecticut Center for Child Development
Ms. Sheila E. Masterson Whalley Avenue Special Serices District
Ms. Lisa Melillo Masuk High School
Mr, Bobby Peterson
Dr. Gary S. Rappaport Exceldent Dental of Orange
Dr. Moshe Siev Retired
Ms. Evelyn-Frizzle Streater-Frizzle Retired
Ms. Ruth Werth William Raveis
Ms. Diane Young-Turner Sterling Library Yale University
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 3
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 12
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 6
Female 9
Standing Committees
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Finance
Personnel
 
 
Financials
Fiscal Year Start July 01 2014
Fiscal Year End June 30 2015
Projected Revenue $38,646,218.00
Projected Expenses $38,407,773.00
Spending Policy N/A
Documents
Form 990s
9902013
9902012
9902011
9902010
9902009
9902009
9902008
Audit Documents
Audit2014
audit2012
audit2011
audit2010
audit2009
audit2008
IRS Letter of Exemption
501(c) 3 Marrakech Inc
Detailed Financials
Prior Three Years Total Revenue and Expense Totals ChartHelpFinancial data for prior years is entered by foundation staff based on the documents submitted by nonprofit organizations.Foundation staff members enter this information to assure consistency in the presentation of financial data across all organizations.
Fiscal Year201320122011
Total Revenue$9,696,545$10,187,218$11,202,631
Total Expenses$9,217,517$9,986,880$10,850,129
Prior Three Years Revenue Sources ChartHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available) and revenue sources may not sum to total based on reconciliation differences. Revenue from foundations and corporations may include individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201320122011
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
$83,118$85,751$692,552
Government Contributions$0$0$0
Federal------
State------
Local------
Unspecified------
Individual Contributions------
------
$9,303,743$9,945,804$10,421,416
Investment Income, Net of Losses$196,737$77$2,403
Membership Dues------
Special Events$49,533$44,163$75,841
Revenue In-Kind------
Other$63,414$111,426$10,419
Prior Three Years Expense Allocations Chart
Fiscal Year201320122011
Program Expense$8,776,413$9,986,880$10,850,129
Administration Expense$370,425----
Fundraising Expense$70,679----
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.051.021.03
Program Expense/Total Expenses95%100%100%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue53%0%0%
Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities Chart
Fiscal Year201320122011
Total Assets$19,032,130$18,473,150$19,094,999
Current Assets$2,462,221$1,630,975$4,222,583
Long-Term Liabilities$11,222,728$11,281,266$10,885,537
Current Liabilities$2,374,748$2,236,258$3,454,174
Total Net Assets$5,434,654$4,955,626$4,755,288
Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201320122011
Top Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- --CIL Reality, Inc. $547,657
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Solvency
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities1.040.731.22
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets59%61%57%
Capitial Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Comments
Foundation Staff Comments

This profile, including the financial summaries prepared and submitted by the organization based on its own independent and/or internal audit processes and regulatory submissions, has been read by the Foundation. Financial information is inputted by Foundation staff directly from the organization’s IRS Form 990, audited financial statements or other financial documents approved by the nonprofit’s board. The Foundation has not audited the organization’s financial statements or tax filings, and makes no representations or warranties thereon. The Community Foundation is continuing to receive information submitted by the organization and may periodically update the organization’s profile to reflect the most current financial and other information available. The organization has completed the fields required by The Community Foundation and updated their profile in the last year. To see if the organization has received a competitive grant from The Community Foundation in the last five years, please go to the General Information Tab of the profile.

Address 6 Lunar Drive
Woodbridge, CT 06525
Primary Phone 203 389-2970
Contact Email contact@Marrakechinc.org
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Heather Ivy LaTorra
Board Chair Mr. Steven P. Shwartz
Board Chair Company Affiliation CTO Consulting LLC.

 

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