Rotary distributes grants to organizations that aid children

April 3, 2014
Recipients of the 2014 Bristol Rotary Club. From left the left, Rotarian Les Kish, who chairs the golf committee; Tom Dickau of the Bristol Historical Society; Rotarian Doreen Stickney of the Imagine Nation children's museum; Alli Feigen of the Kids in the Middle program; Phil Lysiak of the St. Vincent DePaul Mission of Bristol; Rotarian Laura Watson of Reach Out and Read; Kimberly Carmelich of the Parent and Child Center at Bristol Hospital; Rotary Club Treasurer Dale Clift; and Ellen Zoppo of the McCabe-Waters Little League and the Bristol Girls Little League Softball program.

Recipients of the 2014 Bristol Rotary Club. From left the left, Rotarian Les Kish, who chairs the golf committee; Tom Dickau of the Bristol Historical Society; Rotarian Doreen Stickney of the Imagine Nation children’s museum; Alli Feigen of the Kids in the Middle program; Phil Lysiak of the St. Vincent DePaul Mission of Bristol; Rotarian Laura Watson of Reach Out and Read; Kimberly Carmelich of the Parent and Child Center at Bristol Hospital; Rotary Club Treasurer Dale Clift; and Ellen Zoppo of the McCabe-Waters Little League and the Bristol Girls Little League Softball program.

Young people in and around Bristol are the big winners in the Bristol Rotary Club’s small grants program.

The club distributed checks totaling more than $15,000 this week to nine organizations serving children and youth, according to a press release from the Rotarians.

The McCabe-Water Little League will bring in new players from the city’s West End thanks to a grant from the club, said the release. The league offers a chance for children to play baseball in the league even if their families cannot afford the cost and the club’s support will make it possible for dozens of new players to join, said the release.

Reach Out and Read, a new initiative of the Bristol Early Childhood Alliance, got a boost from a Rotary grant, said the release. Working through a local pediatrician, the program encourages the important practice of reading to very young children by providing parents with books for babies and toddlers at the doctor’s office.

Children who are staying at the Bristol Emergency Shelter and at the Women’s Transitional long term shelter will benefit from new cribs, changing tables, and other items that the Rotary will pay for through a grant to the St. Vincent DePaul Mission of Bristol, said the release.

Shepard Meadows received a Rotary grant to help pay for horseback riding classes for clients with physical, cognitive and emotional disabilities, said the release.

The Parent and ChildCenter at BristolHospital, which works to prevent child abuse through parenting classes, got a grant to support its educational and referral services, said the release.

The Bristol Girls Little League Softball program will be able to offer pitching clinics to girls from all over the city who take part. The program feeds into city high school softball teams, said the release.

A youth program at the Bristol Historical Society that will help capture and preserve the story of a piece of city history will continue, thanks in part to a Rotary grant, said the release.

The Imagine Nation children’s museum’s PinwheelPass program, supported in part by a Rotary grant, will help open the museum to those who might not otherwise be able to use it, said the release.

Kids in the Middle, a program for middle school children that is operated by the city’s school board and the United Way, also received support from a Bristol Rotary Club grant, the release said.

The club, which makes the grants from proceeds of its annual golf tournament, selected these recipients from a large pool of applicants.

“There is so much need in the community and so many worthy projects that we had to make difficult choices,” said club President Jackie Majerus-Collins in the Rotarians’ news release “But we’re thrilled that we are able to help these organizations make a difference in the lives of so many Bristol kids. We’re grateful to everyone who made the golf tournament a success.”

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