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    Newton woman celebrates Mother’s Day by walking for peace

    Melanie Hardy (right) is farm manager at Land’s Sake.
    Melanie Hardy (right) is farm manager at Land’s Sake.
    Instructors Judi Brady (left) and Liz Gregg worked with Alan Weiner as part of the Livestrong program at the Charles River YMCA in Needham.

    MOMS WALK FOR PEACE: For the fourth year, Josie Greene of Newton plans to celebrate Mother’s Day with her extended family and friends by participating in the annual 3.6-mile Mother’s Day Walk for Peace on May 13 at 8:30 a.m. at Town Field Park in Dorchester’s Fields Corner. While one of the goals of the walk is to raise money for the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute, Greene said her larger mission is increasing awareness of youth violence in neighborhoods just miles from her own.

    The organization was founded by Tina Chery after her 14-year-old son, Louis, was fatally shot on his way to a meeting of teens against youth violence in 1993. The Peace Institute educates youngsters about the importance of peace and provides support services to families in the aftermath of a homicide.

    Greene said walkers include elected officials, law enforcement professionals, neighbors, clergy, advocates, and parents and friends of those lost to violence.


    “We walk in solidarity because we all want peace in our neighborhoods, and we want to be part of making it,” she said. “The message is it’s not OK for kids to be killed in any community.”

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    For more information, visit ldbpeaceinstitute.org or mothersdaywalkforpeace.org. Those interested in carpooling or walking with Greene’s Parents for Peace team may call her at 617- 527-7468.

    HELPING THE HEALING: Anne Porcella of Needham was 39 years old when an annual mammogram led to a breast cancer diagnosis in January 2005. The cancer returned nearly six years later – this time spreading to her lymph nodes. Porcella underwent surgery last January, followed by chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

    Although she was surrounded by family and friends, Porcella said her treatment experience was at times “lonely and isolating.” She ended up finding support from others with firsthand understanding of her struggle at the Charles River YMCA in Needham.

    Porcella made her first visit last August, intending to walk on a treadmill to keep up her strength. Instead, she learned about the YMCA’s partnership with the Lance Armstrong Foundation to offer a free, twice-weekly Livestrong program of stretching, cardio and strength training, yoga, meditation, and nutrition for adults who are undergoing treatment for cancer or who have survived it. Group exercise coordinator Liz Gregg , a cancer survivor, said workouts are geared to individuals’ needs.


    Porcella said the regular exercise helped her feel as if she had regained control of her body.

    “It’s a tremendous thing to feel like you’re doing something healthy for your body,” said Porcella, who is now cancer-free. “There’s life after cancer, but also during cancer.”

    The current 12-week fitness and wellness program ends May 24, but registration is being accepted for the next session, which runs from September to December. For more information, contact Gregg at 781-449-6646 or egregg@ymcaboston.org.

    FRESH AND LOCAL: As farm manager at Land’s Sake in Weston, Melanie Hardy of Jamaica Plain said she loves the farm’s contributions of educational opportunities as well as food. Both are abundant in its community supported agriculture share program.

    Hardy describes the CSA, in its seventh year at Land’s Sake, as a subscription to seasonal produce. The sale of 240 shares each spring provides the farm with funds for seeds, fertilizer, and other supplies.


    Shareholders take on the risk and reward of the farm season, and on average receive 15 pounds of veggies each week from mid-June through the end of October. Pick-ups are scheduled on Tuesdays or Thursdays, 2 to 7 p.m., and Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., to coincide with the farmstand schedule.

    Preharvested staples include tomatoes, lettuce, summer squash, garlic, beets, chard, broccoli, winter squash, carrots, eggplant, kale, and peppers. Pick-your-own varieties of sugar snap and shelling peas, green beans, cherry tomatoes, flowers, and tomatillos are also available. Weekly newsletters feature farm updates, recipes, and storage tips.

    Hardy said the CSA represents a sustainable financial model for farms, while encouraging a deeper community understanding of what it means to eat locally and seasonally. In addition, Land’s Sake donates $25,000 in fresh produce each year to the Weston Council on Aging, Community Servings in Jamaica Plain, and Lovin’ Spoonfuls in Boston.

    “People are awed by the diversity and how the farm changes over the season. They learn so much, which is the most exciting thing for me,” she said, noting that Land’s Sake grows 50 different crops and a combined 350 varieties of vegetables and flowers. “I love working outside, but people are the reason I farm.”

    A traditional share for the 21-week farm season costs $625, plus a $55 annual membership fee to Land’s Sake. A full share, which includes three additional distributions in November and December, costs $775 plus the $55 membership fee.

    For more information, call Land’s Sake at 781-893-1162 or visit landssake.org.

    FOR KIDS’ SAKE: The May issue of Family Circle magazine features a four-page color story about Kidz b Kidz, a Needham charity founded by Nancy Corderman of Needham and Jan Weinshanker of Gloucester.

    The organization, which benefits Children’s Hospital Boston, encourages children to create artwork for products sold to enhance a child's hospital experience and support pediatric medical research.

    For more information, visit kidzbkidz.org.

    ON BOARD: Mount Ida College in Newton recently appointed three new trustees to its board : Concord resident Robert Giannino-Racine , (left) chief executive of Action Center for Educational Services and Scholarships; Newton resident Barry Wanger (left), president of Newton-based Wanger Associates and a fellow of the Public Relations Society of America; and Roslindale resident Robert Lewis Jr. (left), vice president for program at The Boston Foundation.

    PROMOTING HEALTHY TEEN RELATIONSHIPS: Casey Corcoran will be the featured speaker at the Sudbury Wayland Lincoln Domestic Violence Roundtable on Tuesday, at 3 p.m. in the Wayland Public Safety Building.

    Corcoran, program director of the Children and Youth Program at Futures Without Violence in Boston, will discuss strategies for engaging young men in preventing dating violence and promoting healthy teen relationships in their schools and communities.

    The program is free and open to the public. Parents, school personnel, police officers, coaches, scout leaders, health professionals, clergy, and youth leaders are encouraged to attend.

    For more information, visit domesticviolenceroundtable.org.

    People items my be submitted to Cindy Cantrell at cantrell@globe.com.