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Picture This

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A photo essay of recent business events in Western Massachusetts / May 30, 2017

Special Delivery

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The Post Office Food Drive for the Northampton Survival Center took place on May 13. Postal trucks delivered more than 24,000 pounds of food, with hundreds of volunteers working in two-hour shifts to unload, sort, weigh, and box up the donations. Top: volunteers Cher Willems, Debin Bruce, Elaine Findley, Tyler Lacombe-Bart, Liz Bedell, and Talia O’Shea sort boxes, cans, and glass. Bottom: volunteers Jake Greenburg, Lucas Steblea, and Reed Shimmelfing help a postal worker unload the truck.

All You Need Is Love

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Mercy Medical Center’s first annual Caritas Gala raised $358,316 to expand and enhance Mercy Behavioral Health Care’s opioid-treatment and addiction-recovery programs, including a new inpatient step-down treatment program for post-detox services. Themed “All You Need Is Love,” the inaugural gala was held at the MassMutual Center in March. John Sjoberg and Brenda Garton-Sjoberg served as honorary chairpersons of the event. Sjoberg serves as chairman of the board for Mercy and as vice chairman of the board for Trinity Health – New England. Garton-Sjoberg has served as honorary chairperson of Mercy Gift of Light. Pictured, from left: Alice Kennedy, director of Special Gifts, Fund Development, Mercy Medical Center; Dr. Mohamed Hamdani, committee member, Opioid Project; Sr. Mary Caritas; Dr. Robert Roose, vice president, Mercy Behavioral Health Care; Allison Gearing-Kalill, vice president, Fund Development, Mercy Medical Center; Sjoberg; Garton-Sjoberg; Dean Whalen, chair, Opioid Project; and Daniel Keenan, regional vice president, Advocacy and Government Relations, Trinity Health – New England.

Unified Against Bullying

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More than 650 people gathered at the Log Cabin in Holyoke on May 16 to celebrate diversity through fashion at a fund-raiser for Unify Against Bullying. Students of all shapes, sizes, styles, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and physical ability from 30 different schools in Massachusetts and Connecticut strutted their stuff at the nonprofit’s third annual Fashion Show, presented by Robert Charles Photography of East Longmeadow. Greta Salóme (top), Icelandic performer, joined the students on stage for a moving performance which portrayed an example of dealing with bullying and what it takes to rise above it. During the skit, she performed her song, “Hear Them Calling,” which she sang in the finals of Eurovision in 2016. Bottom: a runway model performs in a skit about bullying.
Photos by Robert Charles Photography

Earning and Learning

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Sharon Dufour, chief financial officer for Luso Federal Credit Union, and Kimberly Anderson, Community Relations representative for Luso, were recognized on National Financial Educators Day for their hard work and dedication to promoting financial-literacy education in Ludlow, Hampden, and Wilbraham. Nominated by Junior Achievement of Western Massachusetts (JAWM), Dufour and Anderson, supported by Luso Federal Credit Union and a grant from the Joseph and Anna C. Dias Family Foundation, help bring financial-literacy education to thousands of youth in the three communities. Every child in Ludlow schools and St. John the Baptist School, kindergarten through grade 8, participates in a JA program each year, as well as all the students at Thornton Burgess Middle School in Hampden and Wilbraham Middle School. Dufour and Anderson not only secure the funding for the programs, but recruit and train nearly 100 volunteers to deliver them. Dufour and Anderson also teach multiple JA programs each year. Pictured, from left: JAWM Development Director Megan Beliveau; Dufour; Anderson; and JAWM Program Manager Abigail Ames.

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