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    YWCA Greater Newburyport collects fresh produce for needy families

    SHARING THE BOUNTY: Now is the time for fresh fruits and vegetables, and for sharing through the Stir the Pot program at the YWCA Greater Newburyport .

    The program, in its fourth year, provides local families in need with fresh fruits and vegetables from community members’ own gardens or through weekly community-supported agriculture, or CSA, distributions.

    Stir the Pot has collected and distributed at least 2,500 pounds of healthy food thanks to people who have donated a portion of their crops to the cause.


    The food has been distributed to the YWCA residence programs, the Kelleher Park Tenant Association, area food banks, and the Sullivan Building, which provides housing for seniors.

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    There are two ways for people to get involved. They can bring fruits and produce to the YWCA’s main branch at 13 Market St. in Newburyport from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays. The person at the membership desk will direct them to where they can deliver the donations.

    Volunteers are also needed for about an hour a week to pick up produce from the YWCA and deliver it to recipients.

    Those interested should contact Ellie Davis at

    CARING CAMPS: There are healing days ahead for children who have experienced the death of a significant person in their lives.


    Both Hospice of the North Shore & Greater Boston and Merrimack Valley Hospice have one- or two-day free camp programs to help children process and express their grief in creative ways.

    Hospice of the North Shore & Greater Boston offers a two-day experience this Saturday and Sunday at Glen Urquhart School in Beverly, and a one-day camp, Aug. 3, at Brimmer and May School in Chestnut Hill.

    The days include a combination of child-focused activities, including arts and crafts, water activities, and games. There also are relaxation and workshop activities for adults.

    Parents and caregivers of campers receive comprehensive information for helping children cope with grief.

    Call 978-774-5100or e-mail


    Merrimack Valley Hospice’s camp is July 18 at Winnekenni Castle in Haverhill.

    The day includes music, keepsake crafts, and other activities, and is geared for children ages 6 to 13.

    “During the program, children are able to express their grief in creative ways, while building friendships with other children who have also experienced a loss such as a parent, grandparent, sibling, or friend,” said Jessica Sharpe, bereavement services manager for Merrimack Valley Hospice.

    “Children grieve in different ways, and we are committed to offering a range of programs to help them through these difficult times,” she said.

    The day is supervised and directed by Merrimack Valley Hospice-trained professional social workers, nurses, grief counselors, and expressive therapists.

    Registration is required. Contact Sharpe at 978-552-4904 or

    WHO’S WHAT WHERE: The Rev. Karen Maleri is the new manager of pastoral ministries at Brooksby Village, a retirement community in Peabody. She has experience in interfaith collaboration, management, and continuing-care retirement communities. Brooksby Village has three interfaith chapels. . . . Healing Abuse Working for Change (HAWC) in Salem, which provides services and support in 23 cities and towns to people affected by domestic violence, has elected three new board members: Gladys Agudelo of Revere; Fernando Ramos of Lowell; and Linda Puopolo of Lynn. Officers elected for the 2013-1014 term are Stephen Feron of Hamilton, president; Ruth Bitchell of Byfield, vice president; Sandy Edwards of Peabody, secretary; and Benjamin Waxman of Salem, treasurer . . . Greenbelt, Essex County’s land trust, is wrapping up its first year with the AmeriCorps MassLIFT program, through which two local members served in the positions of community outreach and land stewardship. Cricket Wilbur of Ipswich, a recent recipient of her doctorate in paleoecology from Antioch University in Keene, N.H, has been working to engage residents and community groups in land conservation initiatives. Danielle Christopher of Newbury split her AmeriCorps service time as a land steward with Greenbelt and the Ipswich Open Space Program. She worked to engage citizens in recreational trail development, documented conservation activity, and assisted in the expanded implementation of Greenbelt’s osprey program, which included a live webcam of nesting activity.

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