Posted on Feb 11, 2020
Rotary Club of Needham Newsletter February 11th, 2020
Volunteer Opportunities
Meal Packing
"The Rise Against Hunger": packing 20,000 meals for the hungry on Saturday March 28th at the Masonic Hall from 10:00-2:00 with the Needham High School Interact Club.
In the Community
Needham High School Service Fair (see photo below)
Students at Needham High School are required to provide 60 hours of service to their community. On Wednesday February 12th, local service organizations, including the Rotary Club of Needham, held a "service fair" at the High School to explain their community service to the students while offering the students an opportunity to get involved and meet their service goals. 
Needham Free Public Library and the Boston Bruins Pajama Drive to Benefit Children in the Department of Children and Families System and Cradles to Crayons
The goal was 12,000 pairs of pjs. Our members donated new pajamas or funds to buy them, multiplying the impact of the Club's $500 donation. The combined Rotary donations were used to purchase 200 pairs of pajamas. 
Spelling Bee
Sunday March 15th at 3:00 at Needham High School Cafeteria
Civics Bee 
Sunday March 22nd at 2:00 at Broadmeadow School
Meeting: Charles River YMCA 
Speaking on behalf of the Charles River YMCA were Paula Jacobson, Executive Director (see photo below), and Julie Richmond, Business Director. The Charles River Y is one of 13 YMCA facilities serving the greater Boston community. The first Young Mens' Christian Association (YMCA) in the United States was founded in Boston by Captain Thomas Sullivan in 1851. Needham's Charles River branch followed in 1880. The YMCA has a distinguished history of nurturing the "triangle" of body, mind and spirit in this region. Springfield College, originally the School of Christian Workers, was founded to train YMCA leaders. It retains that role today. Basketball was created in 1891 when the director of the Springfield YMCA gave Physical Education teacher, James Naismith two weeks to come up with a game that could be played indoors in winter. Volleyball followed four years later. Northeastern University started off in 1916 as the "evening institute" for the YMCA. 
​​​​​​​Today's YMCA is open to people of all ages, genders and religions. The "Y" is dedicated to reducing the barrier to participation for less affluent families posed by fees. Membership dues and program service fees are designed to cover the cost of operation, while grants and donations (22% of Greater Boston Y's $77.5mm revenues in 2018) cover the cost of outreach to the less affluent. The Y promises to partner with others to create a community of caring people to improve health and to empower youth and families. Paula noted that the Charles River Y offers special programming with partners, including: the Charles River Center (developmental disabilities), Riverside School (behavioral health disorders), Walker School (behavioral, social and emotional challenges), Parent Talk and Needham Youth Services. Funding partners, who help to make the Charles River Y's programs accessible to all, include the Rotary Club of Needham, the Exchange Club, Needham Bank and Webster Bank. Julie Richmond pointed out that an important fundraiser for the Charles River Y' the Giving Gala, is coming up on March 21st at Powers Hall.