AROUND THE VALLEY
One Wish Project Wins JDCU National Nonprofit Day Campaign
Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union (JDCU) announced One Wish Project as the winner of National Nonprofit Day Campaign. The organization received a $2,021 donation as the winning prize.
One Wish Project, located in Lawrence, provides birthday parties, cakes, and gifts for children of all ages living in foster care and homeless shelters. The organization supplies gifts and has volunteers bake homemade cakes and cupcakes for the children.
Hannah Finn, founder of One Wish Project, established the organization at 14 years old in order to help children in need experience the kind of joy everyone should feel on their birthday. She began by celebrating ten kids at a local shelter, and now she brings birthday celebrations to more than 350 children. One Wish Project believes that every child deserves to have a birthday regardless of their address and living arrangements.
JDCU ran the Nonprofit Day Campaign from July 26 through Aug. 7 to recognize National Nonprofit Day, which was celebrated across the country on Tuesday, Aug. 17. Community members nominated their favorite local nonprofits for the chance to win the $2,021 donation.
MRT One of 14 Greater Boston Theatres Announcing Commitment to Public Safety as Indoor Performances Resume
The Merrimack Repertory Theatre in Lowell joined thirteen other theatre companies in the Greater Boston area to announce a collective commitment to public safety as live, indoor performances resume in the region amid concerns around the rise in COVID-19 cases in the US.
These theatre companies will implement policies designed to protect the health and safety of everyone by requiring proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test for all artists, staff members, and audiences who attend live, indoor performances at their institutions. Masks will be required inside the theatres as well.
These policies will be in place immediately and valid through October 31, 2021 (in alignment with Broadway’s current policies), and will be reevaluated as the situation evolves. They are based on CDC guidance and were developed in consultation with public health officials. Individual theatres will list their specific protocols and guidelines on their websites.
The organizations joining MRT in this effort are: Actors’ Shakespeare Project, American Repertory Theater, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, Central Square Theater, The Front Porch Arts Collective, The Gamm Theatre, Gloucester Stage Company, Greater Boston Stage Company, The Huntington, Martha’s Vineyard Playhouse, Moonbox Productions, SpeakEasy Stage Company, and Wellesley Repertory Theatre. Other companies are expected to sign on in the coming weeks.
NECC Rad Tech Grads Have 100% Passing Rate on National Exam
Northern Essex Community College announced that despite the challenges faced by the COVID-19 pandemic, 100% of their radiologic technology students passed their national licensure exam on the first try this year.
Graduate students include Yesenia Rivera of Lawrence, who went right to work as an outpatient radiology technologist at Mass General Hospital after graduation, and Kelsey Corbett of Stoneham who is currently working at Holy Family Hospital.
According to Professor Pat Willett, in previous years, the NECC pass rate on the certification exam by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists has been in the low-to mid-90 percentile. All 2021 graduates have also found employment as certified and licensed radiologic technologists.
MCC Joins Achieving the Dream Network
Middlesex Community College (MCC) announced it is joining the 2021 cohort of the Achieving the Dream (ATD) Network, a network of more than 300 colleges in 45 states dedicated to improving student success. As a network institution, MCC will work to improve equitable outcomes for students, bolster student retention and completion, and expand holistic supports to meet students’ evolving needs. MCC is one of five community colleges joining this cohort.
The colleges are joining ATD after the COVID-19 pandemic laid bare the nation’s health and economic inequalities and the resulting economic fallout disproportionally hit working class families and racially minoritized communities.
This opportunity allows MCC to partner with ATD over the next three years to expand the use of best practices for student success and equity, receive guidance in transforming to a student-centered institution, and build a culture of data to identify barriers to student success, using qualitative and quantitative evidence to drive changes in policies and practices across the institution.
LEADS Announces Third Merrimack Valley Cohort in Collaboration with Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce, Lawrence Partnership
The LEADS Fellowship program has announced the selection of 66 fellows who will participate in the final Merrimack Valley (MV) cohort, comprised of diverse, cross-sectoral leaders from Lowell, Lawrence, and Haverhill.
The members from Lawrence and Haverhill, have been recruited and selected by the Lawrence Partnership and the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce.
LEADS (Leaders Engaged and Activated to Drive System wide change) is an Innovative Program expanding the leadership capacity, connectivity and social capital of leaders in the gateway cities of Massachusetts. Piloted in Lawrence in 2018, LEADS expanded to Lowell and Haverhill in 2020, offering hybrid programming through the pandemic.
The 66 fellows recently selected into the third MV cohort represent the diversity of Lowell, Lawrence, and Haverhill. The majority of this cohort is people of color, and includes business and non-profit executives, public officials, and faith leaders.
MOVERS & SHAKERS
Local Woman Wins VaxMillions
Lilly Guttenplan, of Lowell, was announced one of the winners for the fourth of five drawings for the Massachusetts VaxMillions Giveaway. As part of the giveaway, fully vaccinated residents ages 18 and older are eligible to enter to win one of five, $1 million cash prizes. Guttenplan is an elementary ESL teacher and a mother of two. According to administration, she got vaccinated to protect herself, her family, and her community and is thankful to all the frontline workers and everyone who is still responding to the many challenges of COVID in different ways. She and her husband plan to put the winnings towards their daughters’ college education.
Amesbury’s Shop Local-Opoly
Amesbury businesses and non-profits have teamed up to organize “Shop Local-Opoly,” encouraging the community to shop local. For the entire month of August, community members can participate in this game, where thirty-two businesses and nonprofits each signed up for a space — called a “property” — on the monopoly-like game board. While the game supports many local businesses, each category also has a property that can only be earned through a $5.00 donation to a particular nonprofit. Click here to access the game board.
LGH TeamWalk for CancerCare
Last year, Lowell General Hospital transitioned their annual TeamWalk for CancerCare to TeamWalk on your terms, and the will be continuing this tradition this year. TeamWalk on Your Terms allows you to hold TeamWalk on your turf and on your time. When it is safe and you feel comfortable, simply choose when and where you want to walk. Get your team together for a three or six mile walk on the date and time of your choosing. You can walk until Sept. 1. For details, click here.
Bethany Communities’ Celebration of Innovation and Integration
Support Bethany Communities’ development of Merrimack Place, an extension of the Merrivista campus, by attending the Celebration of Innovation and Integration on Thursday, Sept. 9, from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Bradford Country Club. The event will include dinner, raffles and a live performance by local band Three Part. Visit here to reserve your spot at the event.
MVFB 27th Annual Golf Tournament
The Merrimack Valley Food Bank’s 27th Annual Golf Tournament and Awards Dinner will be held on Monday, Sept. 13, at Indian Ridge Country Club, with registration beginning at 11:00 a.m. The tournament will honor the heroic staff at Lowell General Hospital, and your participation directly supports the MVFB’s mission. Visit here to register.
25th Annual Elder Services Golf Classic
Bring out your inner Phil Mickelson and support a good cause during the 25th Annual Elder Services Golf Classic on Tuesday, Sept. 14, at the Haverhill Golf & Country Club. The event features contents, raffle prizes, a luncheon, a $10,000 putting content, and more. This event sells out on a regular basis so visit here to save your spot today.
19th Annual Mill City Mentors Golf Tournament
Enjoy a day of golf while supporting a good cause during the 19th Annual Mill City Mentors Golf Tournament. The event supports Community Teamwork’s Mill City Mentors program, and takes place on Thursday, Sept. 16, at the Sky Meadow Country Club in Nashua. Click here to learn more.
Tour de Greenbelt: Cycle for Land Conservation
For beginner riders to seasoned cyclists, Essex County Greenbelt’s annual Tour de Greenbelt: Cycle for Land Conservation offers a variety of courses to fit all abilities. Taking place on Saturday, Sept. 18, the ride benefits Greenbelt’s local land conservation work, and cyclists will enjoy routes that wind through the scenic landscapes of Essex County. Click here to learn more and register for the event.
Emmaus Annual Cycle for Shelter
Registration is now open for the 2021 Cycle for Shelter. Join the ride to help raise money to defeat homelessness. This year riders have the option of riding virtually or joining in-person on Sunday, Sept. 19, if COVID restrictions allow. If the in-person ride is limited in numbers due to state restrictions, the event will operate under a “first-come, first-served” model and those who registered first will have the opportunity to participate. Click here to register.
Merrimack Valley Hospice’s Virtual Silent Auction
This year, Merrimack Valley Hospice’s annual food, wine, beer-sampling and silent auction is going virtual. Enjoy a snack and your favorite beverage browsing their auction items from the comfort of home. Proceeds will benefit Merrimack Valley Hospice’s comfort care and supportive services for patients nearing the end of life and bereavement services for their families and loved ones. The auction will run from Thursday, Sept. 23, to Saturday, Sept. 25. Click here for more information.
The Wish Project: Backpack Attack
July 1 through mid-September. New, filled backpacks are distributed to children in need in the Merrimack Valley. For a $60 donation, The Wish Project can provide a complete backpack filled with all of the school supplies that a child needs to begin school. Learn more here.
29th Annual Trot for Special Tots 5K Road Race
The Professional Center for Child Development, a local non-profit, will host its 29th Annual 5K Road Race – Trot for Special Tots, on Saturday, Oct 2, at 32 Osgood Street in Andover. The event spreads awareness for the programs they offer, such as early intervention, special education school and child care, and raises funds to support children and families throughout the Merrimack Valley. Click here for more information.
2021 October Fun Fest
Support the Community Giving Tree and have some fun at the October Fun Fest on Saturday, Oct. 2, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. This event will feature True North Ales beer truck, the Urban Epicurean mobile pizza oven, and music from the local band RevelUp. All proceeds from this event will support Community Giving Tree’s programs that provide everyday essentials to local children in need. Visit here to find out more.
PoF 2021 Spread the Joy Luncheon
Join the Power of Flowers Project for their annual Spread the Joy Luncheon on Wednesday, Oct. 6 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Four Oaks Country Club. The event includes a basket and gift card raffle, a silent auction, a wine pull, and a golden ticket drawing to win a $500 Visa gift card. All proceeds to benefit the Power of Flowers Project, a non-profit organization assisting seniors, veterans and those living in care communities. For more information and to purchase tickets click here.
NILP 40th Anniversary Gala
Join the NILP as they celebrate 40 years of helping people with disabilities reach their independent living goals. The NILP’s annual gala — which features a silent auction, raffles, dinner and dancing — will take place on Saturday, Oct. 23, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Blue Ocean Event Center. Click here to purchase tickets.
Smiles4Families Dental Fund
The Lowell Health Community Center (LCHC) is looking for support for the Smiles4Families Dental Fund. Dental care can be very expensive, and many procedures are not covered by insurance companies. By donating to the Smiles4Families Fund, you will help the LCHC assure that every patient has access to exactly the dental care they need — regardless of ability to pay. Visit here to donate.
Greater Lawrence Summer Fund
Consider providing opportunities for thousands of children this summer by donating to the Greater Lawrence Summer Fund. The fund gives children from low-income families a chance to experience life-changing summer activities that not only keep them safe but provides them with opportunities that open doors for a promising future. Click here to consider helping this community organization.