Olivia dunn

Westford's Olivia Dunn Receives Prestigious P.E.O. STAR Scholarship

WESTFORD: Olivia Dunn, a 2021 graduate of Westford Academy, was selected to receive a $2,500 STAR Scholarship from the P.E.O. Sisterhood. She was recommended by P.E.O. Chapter AI of Chelmsford, whose members congratulate Olivia for this honor. The STAR Scholarship award will be presented to Olivia on July 13, 2021 at the Westford Farmer’s Market on the common near the bandstand at 5:30pm.

Olivia was a summer intern at the Westford Museum, a member of the Westford Academy Museum Club, student-lead on the Westford Academy Theater Arts Board and Advertising Manager of the Westford Teen Arts Council.  During two years as Captain of the Westford Academy soccer team, she organized a fundraiser that raised over $700 for uniforms and equipment and was voted MVP by her teammates.  Olivia inspired her teammates to participate in the National Brain Tumor Society’s annual Boston walk for which the team raised over $100k. Olivia is an overcomer with a positive attitude who actively looks for ways to help others. She has vision for her future.  She loves working with people and would like to be an engineering manager.  She was to intern with a family friend at Lego when COVID-19 hit.  She looks forward to pursuing this avenue once the pandemic is over.  She will be attending Worcester Polytechnic Institute in the fall.

The P.E.O. STAR Scholarship was established in 2009 to provide scholarships for exceptional high school senior women to attend an accredited post-secondary educational institution in the U.S. or Canada in the next academic year. The competitive STAR Scholarship is for women who exhibit excellence in leadership, academics, extracurricular activities, community service and potential for future success.

P.E.O. (Philanthropic Educational Organization) has been celebrating women helping women reach for the stars for more than 150 years. Since its inception in 1869, the nonprofit organization has helped more than 116,000* women pursue educational goals by providing over $383 million* in grants, scholarships, awards and loans. The Sisterhood also owns and supports Cottey College. Through membership, the P.E.O. Sisterhood has brought together more than a half a million women in the United States and Canada who are passionate about helping women advance through education, while supporting and motivating them. In addition to the educational philanthropies, the P.E.O. Sisterhood provides a framework of support and community for all members. What started with a bond of friendship among seven women in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, is now one of the oldest women’s organizations in North America with close to 6,000 chapters. To learn more about P.E.O. and its powerful educational philanthropies and to see stories of women who have benefited from these programs, visit peointernational.org.

DONORS URGENTLY NEEDED: Red Cross Still Facing Severe Blood Shortage

The American Red Cross continues to experience a severe blood shortage that is negatively affecting blood product availability across the country. Donors of all blood types – especially type O and those giving platelets – are urged to make an appointment to give now and help ensure hospital shelves are stocked with blood products over the Fourth of July holiday and beyond.

Right now, the Red Cross is working around the clock to provide blood products to hospitals responding to an unusually high number of traumas and emergency room visits, as well as overdoses and resulting transplants. As a result of the blood shortage, some hospitals are being forced to slow the pace of elective surgeries until the blood supply stabilizes, delaying crucial patient care. 

In addition, while summer is traditionally a time when blood donations decline, this year is particularly challenging as many Americans receive their vaccinations and resume summer activities after more than a year of limited interactions and travel, leading to lower donor turnout. The need for blood doesn’t take a holiday break − patients still depend on lifesaving transfusions.

Donors are needed now to prevent further delays to patient care. Schedule an appointment to give blood now by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device.

As a thank-you, all those who come to give July 1-6 will receive a Red Cross embroidered hat by mail,* while supplies last. And, donors who come to give July 7-31 will receive a $10 Amazon.com Gift Card by email, plus a chance to win gas for a year (a $5,000 value). (Terms and conditions apply; visit rcblood.org/fuel). 
In most cases, those who have received a COVID-19 vaccine can donate. However, knowing the name of the manufacturer of the vaccine they received is important in determining donation eligibility.

Eagle Scout Court of Honor Ceremony Held for Westford's Noah Bernstein

WESTFORD: State Rep. James Arciero recently attended the inaugural Eagle Scout Court of Honor Ceremony for Noah Bernstein of Westford Boy Scout Troop 195. To achieve the rank of Eagle, a scout must earn at least 21 merit badges in several different subjects ranging from first aid to nuclear science. It is the highest award conferred in scouting.

Additionally, Eagle Scout candidates must plan and complete an extensive Eagle Scout project which consists of the coordination of materials, manpower, and the cooperation of many individuals to achieve the objective of the project. Such projects benefit community groups or civic organizations and represent service to society as well as a demonstration of the leadership required to be an Eagle Scout. For his Eagle project, Noah renovated and improved a neglected kayak and canoe launch on River Street in Westford. The project consisted of building and installing a 30-foot-long boardwalk over a muddy section of the path, clearing and leveling the trail, forming a new parking area, as well as laying wood chips along the trail and parking area.

As part of the ceremony, Arciero, who is also an Eagle Scout, presented Noah with official a citation from the Massachusetts House of Representatives to mark the auspicious occasion.
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The Cannon Theatre Announces Summer Theater Program for Kids/Teens

LITTLETON: The Cannon Theatre is delighted to get back into in-person theater and creative fun this August with their summer program for kids and teens. This program, developed for youth aged 8-18 years, is an introduction to theater through acting, singing, dancing, teamwork, and pitching in backstage to make the magic all come together! 
As the Cannon Theatre is still in the process of establishing their new post-pandemic theater space, the program will be held in the air conditioned comfort of The First Baptist Church of Littleton, near the common: 461 King Street.

The program is scheduled for weekdays, August 9-12 and August 16-19, 11:00 am to 4:00pm. The program culminates in two performances on Thursday, August 19, at 4:00pm and at 7:00pm, and one performance on Friday, August 20, at 7:00pm. 

Join The Cannon Theatre this summer as they blast back to the 1960s! This summer’s show, “The Groovy GoGos” takes us back to the days of auditioning for the coolest Hollywood show around! Will they make it on the show? Can they get through the jealousies of their rival group? Through drama AND comedy, a group of teens try to make it BIG! Lots of beehive hairdos, rock & roll, dancing, AND fun, fun, fun!

Tuition is $450 per child (family discounts available) and includes one ticket for a family audience member. The Cannon Theatre is pleased to have scholarship funding available for those in need of financial assistance. Massachusetts COVID safety guidance, at the time of the program, will be followed.

For more information, or to register, go to www.thecannontheatre.org. Send your questions to scannon@thecannontheatre.org, or call 978-448-2108. Registration deadline is July 24.

Coming Up at Littleton's Reuben Hoar Library

LITTLETON: Appointments are no longer required to enter the Reuben Hoar Library, Littleton, MA. While inside the library you're advised to wear a mask if you have not been vaccinated. Children under 12 must wear a mask at all times. Curbside pickup is still available.
The Library will be closed on Monday, July 5 for the Independence Day holiday. Events from June 20-July 3 include:
Monday, June 21 - Tails & Tales!
Sign-ups for the Summer Reading Program have begun. Visit the Children’s Room to receive your reading log which will help you track your reading for the summer. The reading will begin on June 28, and the program will end on Saturday, August 14.
Teen Craft: Flower Crowns!
Kick your summer off with a beautiful flower crown! Sign up online and pick up everything you need to make your crown whenever you want. Kits will be available for pick up June 21 through 26. For students in grades 6-12. Online registration required: www.littletonlibrary.org.
Wednesday, June 30, 7pm, Third Wednesday Book Club
Meeting on the last Wednesday this month, reading This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger. Copies are available at the Library. If the weather is good, the meeting will be held outside, otherwise in the Small Meeting Room. For more information or questions please contact Julie at jfredericksen@littletonlibrary.org.
Friday, July 2, 10am, Outdoor Toddler Storytime with Miss Jennifer
Join Miss Jennifer for Outdoor Toddler Storytime! This program is best for children ages 18 months - 3 years. Bring a blanket or chair(s) with you! In the event of bad weather, the meeting will be in the Couper Room downstairs. Online registration required: www.littletonlibrary.org.
For questions about these or any other events, please contact the library at info@littletonlibrary.org, 978-540-2600 or online at www.littletonlibrary.org.

Read to Luna the Dog Live! at the Concord Free Public Library

CONCORD: The Concord Free Public Library invites children to Read to Luna the Dog on the Main Library lawn the second Friday of each month beginning in June between 11:30am-12:30pm. Luna is a certified therapy dog through Pets & People Foundation, Inc. Did you know that reading to dogs boosts reading skills and emotional and social skills for children? This event is for children ages 5+. Children are invited to register for their own individual 15 minute session with Luna. Register in advance by visiting the library's events calendar online at www.concordlibrary.org.
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June is PTSD Awareness Month

June is PTSD Awareness Month. Though most often associated with veterans who experienced atrocities of war, anyone, including children and teens, can suffer with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Children typically recover quickly from stressful events, but when it comes to severe stress, especially serious injuries, the death of a close family member or friend, sexual assault, living through a disaster, or witnessing a violent act such as a school shooting, children can often suffer the long-term effects of PTSD.
The National Center for PTSD estimates that 7-8% of people will experience PTSD during their lives. Worse yet, over 65% of children who are exposed to a traumatic event will, at some point, attempt to take their own lives.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, the symptoms of PTSD are different for young children than those of older teens and adults. Children younger than 6 will often wet the bed, forget how or refuse to talk, act out the traumatic event during routine play, or become unusually clingy with a parent or other adult.

Research shows that depression rates increase after a trauma and tend to be especially high among children with PTSD. If your child or someone you love is struggling with depression or thinking about suicide, get help now. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 1-800-273-TALK (8255), is a free resource, available 24 hours a day for anyone who is in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. The Crisis Text Line is a free 24/7 text line where trained crisis counselors support individuals in crisis. Text “Jason” to 741741 to speak with a compassionate, trained Crisis Counselor. Confidential support 24/7, for free.

The Jason Foundation is another available resource.  The Jason Foundation is dedicated to the awareness and prevention of youth suicide through educational programs that equip youth, parents, educators, and the community with the tools and resources to identify and assist at-risk youth. Many times, a young person will exhibit clear warnings signs prior to an attempt. By knowing the warning signs, and knowing how to help, you could save a life.  Visit The Jason Foundation’s website to learn more about youth suicide, the warning signs, and how you can help make a difference.  The Jason Foundation has never charged a school, community, or individual for the use of their programs or resources.  http://www.jasonfoundation.com
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Emerson Hospital & IMPACT Melanoma Team Up to Protect the Public

CONCORD: Emerson Hospital and IMPACT Melanoma, a national non-profit organization dedicated to reducing the incidence of melanoma, have teamed for the third consecutive year to protect residents from skin cancer. The organizations have deployed touchless, automatic sunscreen dispensers at 16 high-traffic locations, including parks and recreation facilities, beaches, rail trails, and athletic fields throughout Concord and the greater area. The dispensers provide complementary sunscreen throughout Acton (at The Discovery Museum), Bedford, Chelmsford, Concord, Harvard, Hudson, Maynard and Westford.
Jen Melanson, Community Service Coordinator for the town of Chelmsford, reported after the 2020 season, “The program was so well received, we had positive feedback on social media and from citizens who were very excited and appreciative. We are grateful to Emerson Hospital for providing the dispensers and are excited to support the program again this year.”
“We are pleased to work with Emerson Hospital on this invaluable initiative for the third year,” said Deb Girard, IMPACT’s Executive Director. “It is imperative to educate communities at all levels – residents, government, employees, and visitors – to create a broad sense of sun-safe practices aimed at healthier lifestyle choices for our skin. With this initiative in motion, we can achieve exactly that with the fleet of free sunscreen dispensers, and educational messaging. We are excited and hope that neighboring towns take notice. Together we can make a great IMPACT and practice of safe skin.”
Emerson Hospital is sponsoring bright yellow sunscreen dispensers that are filled with SPF 30 sunscreen. The dispensers are monitored regularly and replenished as needed, ensuring that everyone in the area who needs sunscreen has easy access to it. SPF 30 or higher sunscreen is rated and recommended for use by children ages six-months and up, and adults. All sunscreen ingredients are safe and approved by the FDA.
“Skin cancer is one of the most common cancers in our service area, according to our latest Community Health Assessment,” notes Christine Gallery, Senior Vice President, Planning and Chief Strategy Officer, Emerson Hospital. “We are proud to support IMPACT Melanoma again this year, so that people throughout our towns can have fun this summer, while easily protecting themselves from skin cancer. We anticipate the community will use the sunscreen often and it will become a routine part of their summer safety regimen. We encourage the community to be in touch with a physician with any questions or concerns about their skin.”
To learn more about the importance of sunscreen and where the complimentary sunscreen dispensers are located, please visit www.emersonhospital.org/sunscreen.