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Thank you cut-out

No, I didn’t go crazy and for some weird reason think it is November. No, it is June and I am thankful. Why? Because of you. Generous, caring, you. This community. The individuals and families that live here.

I have noticed an overwhelming outpouring of giving in the past few months and hope you have seen it too. There are many examples, but I will list a few.

I’m thinking about those who learned of the need for face masks, dusted off their sewing machines, located the calico from the abandoned 70’s quilt project, and made face masks- lots of them. And of the gentleman who set about to fix all those sewing machines that were suffering from too much dust and too much neglect. Thank you for caring about all of us.

I am thankful for those who care about ensuring we all have access to food. Thank you to the grocery stores that have kept their doors open, adapting their systems so we can purchase groceries. How about the volunteers who have been packaging tons of food that is being delivered to homes each week? End 68 Hours of Hunger, the food pantries in our towns, Got Lunch?, the free and reduced lunch programs through the school, the community suppers/ lunches that have creatively offered take-out meals.  The bus drivers and volunteers who are delivering that food to our seniors and our children. The volunteers who are doing grocery shopping for others who are self-quarantining (my husband and I benefited from that kind service from our friends). How about the folks who have given the money so the food can be purchased and distributed? Thank you all!

I think about the masked volunteer drivers who have stayed operational to make sure folks can get to their needed medical appointments through Community Volunteer Transportation Company and Monadnock at Home. I think about the medical professionals and support staff that have kept our local hospital running and available- for all of us. Thank you! Thank you to all the first responders, our police and fire departments. Those who work in long term care facilities providing needed services, those who are caring for anyone who cannot care for themselves. The mental health professionals who are stretched to support those who are stressed and anxious. Thank you, thank you!

And then I think about our educators. Oh my. They have worked hard to adapt lesson plans to remote learning. Dealing with their own internet connections and technical challenges as well as that of all their students. How to motivate students, to assess what they are learning, to keep it interesting and fight the new distractions created by remote learning. Helping a generation that will not have a traditional senior year. Thank you for caring enough to learn new educational methods and to care for those students and their education.

I am thankful for parents who have been pulled in many challenging directions and have made it through to the end of the remote school year! Many have been challenged with work, overseeing school work, keeping home and family healthy. Add to that the stress of inadequate internet systems for work and school. Parents of young children can’t get together for play dates. Playgrounds have been closed. No school. No childcare for the better part of the spring. (For more on available childcare, check out www.ChildcareAware.org ). Thank you parents for being resilient and raising resilient children.

The local businesses have been hit hard by this health/ economic crisis and have fought back. They have asked for us to continue to support their businesses. They have bent over backward to provide curbside service and delivery in some cases. I am thankful for their creative problem solving and tenacity to stay in business in our community. Thank you!

I am so thankful for the generosity of this community. I recently received a check for The River Center with a note from the donor. Here is what the note said, “When the $1200 government stimulus check finally arrived, it didn’t seem to belong to me- with all the hurt in the world. So I am sending part of it along to you (and others) for I believe you will know how best to make it useful. Thank you for the work that you do, and for being there.” Thank you Donor, for seeing the need and sharing so others may be helped.

Last week, across the state of New Hampshire, nonprofits raised money through NH Gives, a 24 hour on-line giving platform. Almost 500 nonprofits asked their supporters to give to help them continue their mission. And give they did. In the first 12 hours, over $2.5 million was raised. Thank you New Hampshire for supporting your nonprofit organizations!

And I am thankful for the staff, Board, and volunteers of The River Center Family and Community Resource Center. All our work in supporting families, parents, children, tax payers, community members, has continued remotely during this time. I am so grateful to work with this team who care passionately about this community. Thank you!

So, yes, I am thankful. Thankful for you and all you do to make this a better place to live.

The River Center Family and Community Resource Center is here for you. If you, your family, or your neighbor, need support or connections to services, contact us at info@rivercenter.us , www.rivercenter.us or 924-6800.

Margaret Nelson

Executive Director

mnelson@rivercenter.us

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