Spanish American Center, bank team up for ‘Back to School Get Together’
Submitted to The Champion
The Spanish American Center, along with Enterprise Bank in Leominster, is sponsoring a “Back to School Get Together” for children and parents from 3-6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 1 at the center, 112 Spruce St., Leominster.
Stop by for free school supplies and information about the Spanish American Center and its year-round after-school programs. To sign up, or for more information, call Mickey Guzmán at (978) 534-3145, ext. 114.
All school-aged children who attend, accompanied by a parent, guardian or other adult family member will receive school supplies. Donations of supplies made through the generosity of Enterprise Bank in Leominster and the generosity of the Leominster community.
If interested in making a donation of school supplies, please bring them to Enterprise Bank in Leominster through Friday, Aug. 26.
Fallon Health gives grants to local hunger organizations
By David Dore, Leominster Champion
Attending the recent grant distribution were, back row, from left, Tara Rivera and Sharon Nolli from Fallon Health, Lisa Normandin from the Lunenburg Turkey Hill Family Lions Club, Pastor Michelle Feliciano, Pastor Louis Feliciano and Hector Ramos from the House of Grace & Restoration, Sue Chalifoux Zephir from Ginny’s Helping Hand, Mark Maxfield from United Neighbors of Fitchburg, Brian Calnan from Catholic Charities, James Knight and Scott Arnold from Highland Baptist Church, and Kimberly Salmon from Fallon Health, and, front row, center, Kylee McCumber from Kylee’s Kare Kits for Kids, Mary Gianetti from Heywood Hospital and Joanne Foster from the Growing Places Garden Project.
David Dore photo
Attending the recent grant distribution were, back row, from left, Tara Rivera and Sharon Nolli from Fallon Health, Lisa Normandin from the Lunenburg Turkey Hill Family Lions Club, Pastor Michelle Feliciano, Pastor Louis Feliciano and Hector Ramos from the House of Grace & Restoration, Sue Chalifoux Zephir from Ginny’s Helping Hand, Mark Maxfield from United Neighbors of Fitchburg, Brian Calnan from Catholic Charities, James Knight and Scott Arnold from Highland Baptist Church, and Kimberly Salmon from Fallon Health, and, front row, center, Kylee McCumber from Kylee’s Kare Kits for Kids, Mary Gianetti from Heywood Hospital and Joanne Foster from the Growing Places Garden Project. David Dore photo
Organizations that help feed North County residents gathered in Leominster recently to receive grants from Fallon Health to continue their efforts.
Kylee’s Kare Kits for Kidz hosted the grant distribution, which saw almost a dozen groups from Leominster and beyond receive between $1,500 and $2,500.
According to Director of Community Relations Kimberly Salmon, Fallon Health this year funded 65 organizations across Massachusetts that fight hunger with $167,000 in net proceeds from its 10th Golf & Gather FORE a Cause event in September.
The Worcester-based nonprofit health care services organization, which runs a health maintenance organization and Summit Eldercare (which has a location in Leominster), changed its hunger relief program for 2015-16. Instead of giving out unsolicited grants, Fallon Health moved the program online and asked organizations to submit applications.
“We really wanted to see how we could expand the program, how we can make the resources go further, and how we can look at a different way of addressing the issues,” Salmon said.
Local organizations that received grants included:
• Casa de Gracia y Restauracion (House of Grace and Restoration), Fitchburg — $1,500.
• Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Worcester — $2,500.
• Gardner Community Action Committee — $2,500.
• Ginny’s Helping Hand, Inc., Leominster — $2,000.
• Growing Places Garden Project, Leominster — $2,500.
• Heywood Hospital, Gardner — $2,500.
• Highland Baptist Church Food Pantry, Fitchburg — $1,000.
• Kylee’s Kare Kits for Kidz, Inc., Leominster — $2,000.
• Lunenburg Turkey Hill Family Lions Club — $1,500.
• Spanish American Center, Leominster — $2,500.
• United Neighbors of Fitchburg — $2,500.
Doctor offers program in Spanish on childhood asthma
The Spanish American Center, in cooperation with Medical Associates Pediatrics and HealthAlliance Hospital, is excited to announce an Asthma Awareness and Education Program regarding childhood asthma.
On Wednesday, March 2, Dr. Fernando Catalina, a Leominster-based bilingual/ bicultural pediatrician, will speak in Spanish to provide an informative presentation with ample opportunity for questions. English translation will be available as well, and all are welcome.
This will take place on the HealthAlliance Hospital-Leominster campus at 60 Hospital Road, in the Simonds Building, just behind the main hospital building. Free parking is available. The program will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and refreshments will be served. The program is free of charge.
Childhood asthma is a common and serious illness in the Latino community, and, with the help of funding from the North Central Community Health Network (CHNA 9), a multi-pronged program has begun to help families understand and manage asthma. The presentation by Catalina is part of this program.
For questions regarding the upcoming program with Catalina, call the Spanish American Center at (978) 534-3145, extension 112 and ask for or leave a message for Sonia or Lionel.
Ginny’s, Spanish American Center partner on soup kitchen
Submitted to The Champion
Beginning Wednesday, Jan. 13,(2016) Ginny’s Helping Hand and the Spanish American Center are teaming up to provide hot soup and sandwiches from 4-5 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Meals will be served at the Spanish American Center, located at 112 Spruce St. in Leominster, and continuing each week through April.
Both the Spanish American Center and Ginny’s recognized the need for a soup kitchen to provide hot meals to the hungry during the cold winter months. They were each awarded a grant from Fallon Health.
Neddy Latimer of the Spanish American Center and Sue Chalifoux Zephir from Ginny’s are looking forward to launching this new service for the hungry.
“We are very happy to be able to provide hot and healthy meals to those in need this winter,” Chalifoux Zephir said.
Latimer added, “I have wanted to open a soup kitchen for a long time. I am grateful that Fallon Health agreed with us that this service is needed and supported our efforts by funding the soup kitchen.”
“We applaud Ginny’s Helping Hand and the Spanish American Center for creating a partnership focused on providing meals to some of the community’s most vulnerable citizens,” said Richard Burke, interim president and CEO of Fallon Health. “Through our financial support we join them in the fight against hunger. It’s a fight that Fallon Health has taken on across the Commonwealth by providing resources such as grants, advocacy, in-kind donations and volunteers.”
Those wanting more information or wishing to volunteer should please contact Sue Chalifoux-Zephir at Ginny’s at (978) 537-1387 or Neddy Latimer at the Spanish American Center in Leominster at (978) 534-3145.
Sheriff’s Winter Coat Drive spreads warmth and cheer
December, 2015 Leominster Champion
Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis is pictured with members and staff from the Spanish American Center of Leominster during the sheriff’s visit to drop off winter coats for the Sheriff’s Annual Winter Coat Drive.
The Sheriff ’s Coat Drive is an annual event that provides new or lightly used winter coats to families in need throughout Worcester County and is a collaborative effort between the Sheriff ’s Office of Community Corrections, Wachusett Mountain Ski Area, the Worcester County Reserve Deputy Sheriff ’s Association, Warmer Winters of Leominster, the Rutland Women’s Knitting Club, Bay Path Regional Vocational Technical High School in Charlton, Southbridge High School, Twin City Cleaners of Dudley, Independent Cleaners of Fitchburg, and many other local businesses and community partners.
This year, the coat drive received a huge boost in early November with a special donation from Wachusett Mountain Ski Area of more than 1,500 ski jackets.
“With a tremendous donation of over 1,500 winter jackets from Wachusett Mountain Ski Area and the Crowley family, we were able to have a huge head start on our successful coat drive that was able to help so many families in our community,” Evangelidis said. “We cannot thank them enough for their overwhelming generosity.”
During the distribution week, the sheriff paid a special visit to more than a dozen local charitable organizations to personally hand deliver thousands of winter jackets, including the Gardner Community Action Center, the Cleghorn Neighborhood Center and Our Father’s House of Fitchburg, the Spanish American Center of Leominster, the Rutland Food Pantry, St. Anne’s Human Services of Shrewsbury, Rhodes House of Recovery in Millbury, Tradewinds Clubhouse, Catholic Charities and Arc of Hope in Southbridge, and St. John’s Food for the Poor Program, Veteran’s Inc. and The Friendly House of Worcester.
“During the holiday season, the Sheriff ’s Annual Winter Coat Drive helps to ensure that local families who may be in need are provided with an adequate winter coat,” Evangelidis said. “With over 3,500 winter jackets collected during this year’s coat drive, we were able to help more families and children in need than in years past. As the cold weather months approach, and especially during this difficult economic time, it is extremely important to do all we can to help those in our community who may be less fortunate.”
“Sadly we have many families who struggle to pay their electric bills and heating bills and cannot make ends meet, especially during the long winter months,” said Spanish American Center representative Nicolas Formaggia. “The Sheriff ’s Winter Coat Drive is a wonderful resource that we truly depend on each year to help keep our families warm.”
“We are extremely fortunate to have had Wachusett Mountain, Independent Cleaners and Twin City Cleaners, as well as all of our wonderful community partners assist with this year’s coat drive by donating and dry cleaning thousands of winter jackets,” Evangelidis said. “This program would not be possible without their overwhelming generosity.”
Rollstone pledges $10K to Spanish American Center
From left, Rollstone Executive VP Linda Racine, SAC Executive Director Neddy Latimer, President of the Board of Directors of SAC Richard Letarte and Martin Connors, Rollstone president and CEO.
Rollstone Bank & Trust recently pledged $10,000 to the Spanish American Center in Leominster for its meal preparation program.
The SAC prepares more than 1,000 meals daily for children during the summer and delivers as far west as Gardner. It also helps provide meals for homeless people temporarily housed locally. The proceeds will help the SAC convert its kitchen to a commercial kitchen, which has an estimated total cost of $225,000.
“The Rollstone Charitable Foundation’s mission is to strengthen our communities and improve the lives of children, which aligns with the SAC’s efforts,” said Martin F. Connors Jr., president & CEO of Rollstone Bank & Trust. “We are happy to help them continue their important work.”
To make a donation or learn more about the SAC, visit SpanishAmericanCenter.org
Leominster Champion 2014-08-01 / Neighborhoods
Safety First at the Spanish American Center
2014-08-01 / Neighborhoods/ Leominster Champion
Tuesday morning, a group of local youths at the Spanish American Center were given a chance to learn about safety and being a medical emergency responder when Val Ramos and Andrew Harding of Medstar Ambulance visited the center. The youths got to tour the ambulance and learn about different life-saving tools. In photo, youths pose with Ramos (on left) and Harding (on right) along with Center Director Neddy Latimer, Youth Advisor Glory Rodriguez and staff member Chris Simmers-Swanson.
Photo by Champion Editor Lindsay Sauvageau