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The U Review
January 2014 U Review eNews
January 2014

Mark Your Calendar:

Double Up Veggie Bucks
Ongoing — Now through April 2014
Dates: Every 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month
Time: 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
Place: Colony Mill Marketplace (near Elm City Brewing), West Street, Keene, NH
Oil Painting Class with Leo Richards
at the Keene Senior Center

Four Wednesdays beginning January 8, 2014
Limited to 4 students.
Date(s): Wednesdays, January 8, 15, 22, 29
Time: 9:00 a.m.- Noon
Place: Keene Senior Center, Court Street, Keene, NH
Cost: Call for details
For more information or to register, call 352-5037.
GMOs: What’s in Our Food?
Keynote speaker Gary Hirshberg, Chair of Stoneyfield Farm and Just Label It Campaign.
Date: Sunday, January 12, 2014
Time: 2:00 p.m.-4:30 p.m.
Place: The Colonial Theatre, 95 Main St., Keene, NH
Cost: FREE (RSVP on Facebook)
For more information go to
The River Center Safe Sitter Babysitting Course
This course is designed for students ages 11-13. Students will learn basic first aid, positive discipline techniques, and professional business skills.
Date: Monday, January 20, 2014
Time: 9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m. (check-in is at 8:45 a.m.)
Place: The River Center, 46 Concord St., Peterborough, NH
Cost: $65 per student
For more information or to register, email
Local Author Birute Regine Speaks About Her Book Iron Butterflies: Women Transforming Themselves and the World
Call 924-6800 for details.
Date: Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Time: Call
Place: The River Center, 46 Concord St., Peterborough, NH
Cost: Call
For more information or to register, email
YogaDay is expanding to YogaWeekend. Benefits Hospice at HCS.
Date(s): Saturday, January 25 and Sunday, January 26, 2014
Time: 9:00 a.m. (doors open at 8:00 a.m.); Last class starts at 3:00 p.m.
Place: Home Healthcare, Hospice and Community Services, 312 Marlboro St., Keene, NH
Cost: Donation
For more information call 352-2253 or visit
Iron Butterflies & Iron Caterpillars
Four Wednesdays beginning January 29, 2014
New workshop for mothers and daughters! Iron Butterflies & Iron Caterpillars: Mothers and Daughters Navigating Times of Transitions.
Date(s): Wednesdays, January 29, and February 5, 12, 19
Time: 3:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m.
Place: The River Center, 46 Concord St., Peterborough, NH
Cost: $90 per mother/daughter pair
For more information or to register, call 924-6800 or email
Upcoming Keene Senior Center Trips:
Senior-friendly Mardi Gras in New Orleans
February 25-March 2, 2014
Philadelphi Flower Show
March 1-March 4, 2014
Shades of Ireland
April 28-May 7, 2014
For more information or to register, call 352-5037.

In This Issue:

On the AirJanuary on WKBK…

The guest on “The Dan Mitchell Morning Show” at 8:10 am Wednesday, January 15, 2014 will be The River Center.

WKBK regularly features a Monadnock United Way agency on the third Wednesday of each month.

Monadnock United Way Now on Cheshire TV
The theme for all shows — LIVE UNITED!

Watch Cheshire TV Channel 8 (Time Warner Cable) every Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. and see how our partner agencies, donors, volunteers, and corporate partners LIVE UNITED!

Can’t watch it on Wednesdays, or you are not a Time Warner subscriber, episodes are posted on the Monadnock United Way YouTube Channel (




Also, on the third Saturday of the month at 10:00 a.m., be sure to listen to Sound-Off with Chris Coates and Greg Parent on WKBK Radio (1290 AM of 104.1 FM) — a Monadnock United Way partner agency will be on the air discussing their agency and programs. Phoebe Bray from The Community Kitchen will be the guest on January 18, 2014.

How do you LIVE UNITED? Email and tell us. If your story is read on the TV show you’ll win a LIVE UNITED t-shirt!

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Small Acts. Big Impact.

By Ariel Frankel

The following is the third and final story featuring a Monadnock United Way agency written by Ariel Frankel as part of her internship with Monadnock United Way. Her other stories appeared in past issues of The U Review.

Ariel received a Bachelor of Arts in English, from Keene State College in May 2012. Her fondness for the different seasons has Ariel convinced that New England will always be her home.

Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) promotes positive relationships between adults (Bigs) and children (Littles). Littles have a role model they can turn to for help and advice. Children, about 4 to 12 years of age, in need of adult attention, can find them through the BBBS; mentors tend to be about 18 years old or older. In order to determine if the volunteers are a good fit, BBBS has a rigid application and review process that volunteers must go through before being matched with a child in need. Karen Brook, as the program manager, is in charge of this task as well as the equally rigorous matching process. She makes sure the Bigs keep their promises to the Littles, and that each match remains happy.

Small Acts. Big Impact.One of Karen’s favorite parts about her job is when matches get along really well and she can see the difference the Littles have on the Bigs as well as the difference the Bigs have on the Littles. She likes to see them grow together into better people. The longer a match is together, the better the Little’s life becomes because he or she has someone to depend on. Karen loves hearing stories from the matches about the time they spend together having fun.

For two little girls, Erika and Morgan, their Big Sisters, Brittney and Michaela, are someone they can play with during their lunch and recess time on Fridays. Erika is a fourth grader, and Morgan is a first grader. The time they have with their Big Sisters is one thing these Littles can count on. Brittney is a junior at Keene State College studying Psychology, and Michaela, also a student at Keene State, is a sophomore studying Psychology and Education.

Erika and Brittney met recently, and are enjoying the time together as they get to know one another. At the beginning of their match, they signed a contract that outlines the nature and basis of their relationship with BBBS and each other — they know what to expect of each other. The most important agreement is that each person is responsible for letting the other know if they can’t make it to their weekly meeting beforehand.

Morgan and Michaela have been together for a little longer. They are comfortable enough together that they razz each other over games like Life and Rainbow Fish. Michaela lets Morgan make up new rules for all the games they play, but makes sure Morgan eats her lunch and puts away the games. Michaela lets Morgan make decisions, teaching the younger girl to think for herself.

The Littles know that their Bigs are there for them. It’s simple and comforting to these little girls that they now have a Big Sister to ask questions — they have someone to turn to for help and support.

Just as the Littles are supported by the Bigs, the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western New Hampshire organization is supported by the Monadnock United Way. Without Monadnock United Way’s funding, BBBS would not be able to process all of the volunteers’ applications due to the high cost of extensive background checks and interviews. BBBS would not be able to fulfill the community’s need for adult mentors for children without the support from Monadnock United Way.

For more information about Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western New Hampshire, visit their website:

Monadnock United Way helps fund many agencies and programs in the Monadnock Region. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western New Hampshire (BBBS) is one of these programs. This organization pairs children with volunteers in order to foster a positive mentorship for the younger half of these relationships. Thanks to these older volunteers and the funding from Monadnock United Way, many children in the Monadnock Region are benefiting from these positive relationships.

This is just ONE of the 44 programs funded by MUW that is changing lives every day.

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SCS Fuel Assistance

Please contact the SCS Fuel Assistance office in Keene at 352-7512 if you are interested in scheduling an appointment. Appointment packets are mailed to scheduled households that include a checklist of paperwork needed.

SCS can also complete an application for Electric Assistance at the same time. Households are encouraged to apply for both programs, when appropriate.

The SCS website is a helpful tool for gathering information in regards to SCS Housing, Fuel Assistance, Electric Assistance, Neighbor Helping Neighbor, Weatherization. Housing Rehab, Head Start, WIC, Homeless Prevention, Workforce Development, and Commodity Foods, among others. Some programs have applications on the website that can be downloaded/printed! Check it out!

SCS is wishing the Monadnock United Way, our fellow partner agencies, and community members a warm and safe winter season!

~ SCS Energy Services

Southwestern Community Services is a Monadnock United Way Agency.

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GMOs: What's in Our Food
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YogaWeekend to Benefit Hospice at HCS

YogaDay is expanding to YogaWeekend in 2014. The two-day event is set for Saturday, January 25 and Sunday, January 26. YogaWeekend is an opportunity for those new to yoga, as well as the more experienced student, to try a variety of yoga styles first-hand instructed by many local instructors. Doors will open at 8:00 a.m. each day. Classes will begin at 9:00 a.m. and the last class will start at 3:00 p.m.

YogaWeekendHighlights this year will include Kundalini Yoga and Meditation with Snatam Kaur and Sopurkh Singh Khalsa on Saturday afternoon. Snatam Kaur is a well-known singer and song writer who performs Indian devotional music and tours the world as a peace activist. Jay Gupta,RPh,MSc,IM,RYT, popular YogaDay instructor and cofounder of Yoga Caps, will be the keynote speaker on Saturday. Robert Moses, yoga master and publisher of Namarapu Magazine will be the featured speaker on Sunday.

Massage and Reiki will be available throughout each day. Breakfast and lunch are sponsored by the Works Bakery and Café. A raffle with many items donated from area businesses will be available both days.Goodie bags are available for various donation levels.

All classes, massage, Reiki, and breakfast and lunch are by donation, with proceeds benefiting Hospice at HCS, the local non-profit hospice providing end of life care to people at home, in assisted living facilities and in long term care facilities in southwestern New Hampshire. HCS has offices in Keene, Peterborough and Charlestown.

YogaWeekend 2014 will be held at Home Healthcare, Hospice and Community Services, 312 Marlboro Street in Keene. Marquee sponsors of YogaWeekend are Markem-Imaje and Monadnock Radio Group.

For more information call HCS at 352-2253 or visit

Home Healthcare, Hospice and Community Services is a Monadnock United Way Agency.

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From The River Center

FREE Tax Preparation

The River Center tax helpThe River Center’s 7th consecutive year of Free Tax Preparation! Free help is available from IRS certified tax preparers, who are experts on tax credits designed to help people with moderate and low incomes.

Call The River Center at 924-6800 for a free tax preparation appointment. Taking calls starting January 15, 2014 — no earlier!

Head tax volunteer, Larry, can’t wait to see you in the spring!

Safe Sitter Babysitting Course

Monday, January 20, 2014, 9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

This all-day course is designed for students ages 11-13. Students will learn basic first aid, how to care for a choking infant, personal safety for the sitter, how to care for children (feeding, diapering, etc.), behavior management, babysitting as a business, and more!

Advanced registration is required, and space is limited. Call The River Center at 924-6800 or email to request registration forms.

$65 fee per student

Iron ButterfliesLocal Author Birute Regine Speaks About Her Book,
Iron Butterflies: Women Transforming Themselves and the World

Tuesday evening, January 21, 2014 (call 924-6800 for details)

“A profound transition is taking place in our society, a revolution that is largely hidden, and led predominantly by women. A society once based on domination and power over others is beginning to crumble as an era of cooperation and community emerges, founded on the principle that power should only be exercised with and for others. This is the inspiring, central message of the compelling narrative that weaves together the stories of 60 successful women from all walks of life and throughout the world.”

Call 924-6800 for details and to RSVP. For more info on Iron Butterflies, visit:

Iron Butterflies & Iron Caterpillars

Four Wednesdays beginning January 29 2014 3:30-5:30 p.m.

New workshop for mothers and daughters! Iron Butterflies & Iron Caterpillars: Mothers and Daughters Navigating Times of Transitions. Is your daughter (aged 11-15) posing new challenges to your relationship? You don’t have to navigate this critical passage between girlhood and the teen years alone. This 4-week workshop, designed for mother-and-daughter pairs, will allow you to explore what it means to be a strong girl, experience a vehicle for moms and daughters to come together to realize their collective power, and create a community where mothers can learn from each other’s experiences and where girls can be their authentic selves.

Group led by Birute Regine, author of Iron Butterflies: Women Transforming Themselves and the World and Bonnie Harris, author of When Your Kids Push Your Buttons.

Advanced registration is required. Call 924-6800 or email to register.

$90 fee per mother/daughter pair.

The River Center is a Monadnock United Way Agency.

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Foreclosure Can Happen Very Quickly in New Hampshire

The foreclosure process can happen quickly, and it can also be very confusing for homeowners. Losing your home from a foreclosure will hurt your credit, family, and future ability to purchase a home. If you want to save your home, do not ignore foreclosure notices! The sooner you seek help, the more options you will have.
What should you do?

  1. Call 2-1-1 or visit to find a qualified, free homeownership counselor.
  2. Discuss your options with the homeownership counselor to make an informed decision about your future.
  3. If you feel your situation requires help from an attorney, or if your counselor recommends it, contact legal assistance at 877-399-9995 or visit

HomeHelpNH is a statewide foreclosure counseling initiative that helps at-risk homeowners find and work with free experienced homeownership counselors to explore their options.


Southwestern Community Services
63 Community Way
Keene, NH 03431
Tel: 603-719-4294
Additional office in Claremont

Legal Assistance

If you think you need legal assistance instead of counseling, a lawyer will explain your legal options and, if appropriate, refer you for placement with a free or low-cost lawyer for help in the matter.

Legal Advice & Referral Center
For immediate legal advice, call 877-399-9995 or apply online at

Home Retention Clinics
Free Home Retention Clinics, staffed by volunteer attorneys, are held throughout the state. For more information about the Clinics and to see a list of up-coming Clinic locations, visit

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Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western New Hampshire Announces the Appointment of Hugh Alexander as an AmeriCorps VISTA

BBBSBig Brothers Big Sisters of Western New Hampshire is pleased to announce the appointment of Hugh Alexander as its AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America). AmeriCorps VISTA provides full-time staff members to nonprofits and community organizations to create and expand programs that bring low-income individuals and communities out of poverty.

Alexander graduated from University of Mobile with a degree in Business Administration. After graduation, Alexander worked as an onsite protective manager for Share the Beach, an organization that supports sea turtle conservation in the Gulf Coast.

Alexander’s desire to gain experience working with a nonprofit organization that helps children and families brought him to Keene and he will serve as a volunteer staff member for a year of service. On completion Alexander plans to attend graduate school and then continue in the nonprofit sector.

“I am grateful to be given the opportunity to contribute to such a vital organization as Big Brothers Big Sisters. I look forward to working hard to enhance existing mentoring programs.” Alexander is excited to contribute to the development of the organization through fundraising, community outreach, and program management.

Big Brothers Big Sisters is a United Way sponsored agency whose mission is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported, one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever. Mentoring has been proven to improve every child’s opportunity for a happy and productive life.

VISTAVISTA was founded as Volunteers in Service to America in 1965 as a national service program designed specifically to fight poverty in America. In 1993, VISTA was incorporated into the AmeriCorps network of programs.

Big Brother Big Sisters of Western New Hampshire is a Monadnock United Way Agency.

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Keeping All Our Children Safe

Research shows that 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18. Sexual abuse occurs across all ethnicities and economic classes, and is most often perpetrated by someone the child knows. State to state, the legal definition of sexual abuse varies. However, there are many behaviors of a sexual nature that are harmful to children. These can be touching or non-touching behaviors including intercourse, fondling, exposure to pornography or other sexually explicit materials, sexually graphic talk, and voyeurism. Perpetrators of sexual abuse often groom their victims for weeks, months, and sometimes even years before any abuse occurs. Fortunately, child sexual abuse is preventable.

Courtesy of a grant by the NH Charitable Foundation in 2013, MCVP was pleased to launch a new Sexual Abuse Prevention program last year. The two-part program is intended for children ages 3-8 and their teachers, parents, and other caregivers. The first part of the program is a two-hour training for adults titled Nurturing Healthy Sexual Development, wherein participants learn about normal sexual development in kids, definitions of sexual abuse and grooming, and how to handle kids’ questions. Also covered are normal vs. abnormal behaviors, signs of abuse, and when and how to make a report, taught through discussion and group activities. This training prepares caregivers for the implementation of Care for Kids, a curriculum developed in Canada to teach children ages 3-8 about their bodies, babies, feelings, touching, bedtime, and asking for help.

The six-session program addresses each of the six topics with a circle time, song, book, and activity or craft. The purpose of the curriculum is to give kids the information and confidence they need to reduce their risk of sexual abuse. By learning the proper names for their body parts, how to set boundaries, and respect for the boundaries of others, we help children to feel empowered and also reduce their risk of becoming a perpetrator in the future.

If you are interested in scheduling a training or would like to learn more, please contact Becky Beyer at 352-3844 or Together we can prevent child sexual abuse!

Monadnock Center for Violence Prevention is a Monadnock United Way Agency.

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Annual Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic Grantee Conference
Provides Training Boost to Clinic Directors

Power outages, flight delays, and a weather-induced partial government shutdown did not keep the IRS Taxpayer Advocate Service from carrying on its annual, mid-December Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC) Grantee Conference in Washington, D.C. For three and a half days, LITC personnel from all over the country were treated to a banquet of seminars on the finer points of representing low-income taxpayers in controversies with the IRS. Subjects included identity theft, audits, worker classification, collections, appeals, and Tax Court litigation.

Among the LITCs represented was the Low-Income Taxpayer Project of the New Hampshire Bar Association’s Pro Bono Referral Program, a recipient of Monadnock United Way funds. Coordinator Barbara Stewart attended the conference, bringing back a storehouse of knowledge to use in her representation of clients in the coming months and years.

A highlight of the conference — this year and every year — was the address by Nina Olson, the National Taxpayer Advocate and director of the Taxpayer Advocate Service. As co-founder of the fifteen-year-old LITC program, this champion of taxpayer rights takes every opportunity to inspire and educate those who strive to help those who would otherwise face the IRS alone.

For more information about the New Hampshire Low-Income Taxpayer Project, please contact Barbara Stewart at 603-228-6028 or

NH Pro Bono is a Monadnock United Way Agency.

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Agency/Program Wish List

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western New Hampshire
L-shaped office desk — 352-9536, ext. 106

Hundred Nights
Heat-and-eat meals, cereal, fresh fruit, coffee, hot chocolate, tea, sugar, toilet paper, paper towels, feminine products, shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrushes, gently used warm clothing, boots, and long underwear — 352-5197

Monadnock Adult Care Center
Sewing machine Chris, 5322427

Monadnock Area Peer Support Agency (MPS)
Clock radio, small safe, pillows/pillowcases, wii fit/wii sport 352-5093

Monadnock Center for Violence Prevention
Toilet paper, paper towels, household cleaning supplies (kitchen spray, bathroom cleaner, window cleaner, etc.)

Monadnock Family Services
Three or four small couches to use in their Therapy Offices— Sandy Jones, 283-1655

Monadnock United Way
10-12 conference room chairs — Marianne, 352-4209

The River Center
Acrylic craft paint (in bright colors), copy paper, paper towels, toilet tissue, Kleenex, liquid hand soap refills, coffee, playhouse, shed, kid-sized picnic table — 924-6800

WishingThe Samaritans, Inc.
Individually packaged snacks and/or beverages, crossword and Sudoku puzzle books — 357-5510

Southwestern Community Services: Housing Stabilization Services
Large and medium sealable totes with lids; new or gentle used twin sheets, blankets , pillows and bath/hand towels; personal care item (male, female & children/infants); 35-gallon trash bags; any type of metal household furniture — Cathy Thornton, 352-7512, ext. 4295

Southwestern Community Services: Energy Services
Any donations to Fuel Assistance, Electric Assistance, or Weatherization provides 100% direct assistance to clients in the form of preventing electric disconnects, providing emergency fuel deliveries, etc. — Keene, 352-7512 or
Claremont, 542-9528

Winchester Learning Center
Metal Tonka trucks and wagons, large and small, new or old — 239-7347

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Monadnock United Way | 23 Center Street | Keene, New Hampshire 03431 | 603-352-4209
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