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July 30, 2018

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COSA Meeting 
Oct. 23
The Gender Spectrum
*Note Change of Date*

Please join us in welcoming Genny Beemyn from the Stonewall Center at UMass.  Genny will be discussing the gender spectrum, obstacles to respectful care, and resources available to the LGBTQIA+ community.  As providers, we have to learn how to deliver our services to this community in the most dignified and respectful way that honors ones gender expression and provides care in a safe and supportive environment.  Coming to this meeting is a great step!

For almost 30 years, the Stonewall Center has served the campus, the other Five Colleges, and the surrounding community by providing cultural and educational programming; LGBTQIA  ally training  sessions; a  Speakers Bureau  on LGBTQIA and ally issues; a DVD, video, and book  library ; information and referrals; support for individuals who experience harassment and discrimination; advocacy for LGBTQIA students at UMass Amherst; and community outreach through  Queer-e , our weekly listserv of LGBTQIA and Allies Five-College and local events.

We will also introduce a discussion to be held at our November meeting.  What is COSA's role in state policymaking? Let's take a first look at the question together in preparation for a fuller discussion.

How has opioid use or overdose  impacted your life?

We are looking for people to share their story. Are you:
* Currently using opioids
* Exploring or in recovery from opioid use
* On Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT)
* A family member or friend with someone using opioids or in recovery?
No writing experience is necessary, just a willingness to show up, put pen to paper and let your voice out. We will provide a judgment-free zone, a supportive writing space and prompts offered by group facilitators designed to help you express yourself.

Two Four Session Groups:
BELCHERTOWN:  6-8pm  10/29, 11/5, 11/12 & 11/19
NORTHAMPTON:  5-7pm  10/30, 11/6, 11/13 & 11/20

For more information or to sign up call: (413) 437-5736
or e-mail

This collaboration of Hampshire HOPE, the Academy of Music, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office and Voices from Inside

Looking for Nominees for Community Action PV Board of Directors

Community Action Pioneer Valley Board of Directors is made up of 18 individuals from the Franklin and Hampshire Counties and the following towns in the North Quabbin Region; Orange, Erving, New Salem, Warwick and Wendell. Six of these are private individuals, six are appointed by local reps and six nominated then elected to the board.
Every three years our local communities elect these 6 Community Representatives to Community Action's Board of Directors. These nominees are generated by YOU! You know best, potential participants or their family members, who are interested in becoming further involved in their community and actively participating in making change. These representatives are those living or having lived below the poverty level, at some point in their lives. We are looking for viable nominations including our current and highly dedicated Community Representatives.
Community Representative Candidate Nomination Forms must be completed via the community action website no later than October 26th.   The election ballots for each county with the corresponding nominations will be mailed to 1000 Franklin County and 1000 Hampshire County CA participants on October 27, 2018.
The elections will be held Wednesday November 5th via the Community Action Websiteand ballot boxes/ envelopes will be set up in each of the CAPV main buildings in which participants walk in/come in for services.   Nominees can apply here
Questions?  Contact Jane Lynch at


Let's Dance!
A Pathlight Fundraiser

A night of dancing and celebration to support enrichment programs for people with intellectual disabilities! Join Pathlight dancers and their dance partners in the ballroom at the Sheraton Springfield on November 17.   In addition to some joyous dance  performances, we'll have food, drinks, and awards. We'll end the night with a bit of a dance party for all!


Save the Date and Register Now for the Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity Gingerbread Build

It's time to register for the seventh annual Gingerbread Build...and start devising your strategy for building your small confectionery dream home!

People in our community and all over the world partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place a family can call home. Join the Gingerbread build for a fun time that will help bring strength, stability and independence to families in need of a decent place to live in Franklin and Hampshire Counties.  An investment in Habitat's mission pays dividends well into the future by opening for families a world of new opportunities.


Autumn Potluck and Halloween Swap
The Bridge Family Resources 

Colorful apple cider...sweaters... The sights and scents of autumn are all around us! Come join us for a family potluck and Halloween Garb-n-Gear swap! Please bring a dish to share, and Halloween costumes, trick-or-treat baskets, decorations, etc., to swap! 

Tuesday, October 23rd 5:30pm to 7:00pm
The Bridge - 101 University Drive, Suite A3 Amherst

Questions? Contact Anne Barnes at 413-549-0297 ext. 6566



Gazebo Donating to
Cancer Connection

WMass Mother's Day Half Marathon sponsor Gazebo is offering $2 to Cancer Connection for every Wacoal "Awareness" bra they sell in October. They are "matching" Wacoal's donation of $2 per bra to the Susan Komen foundation to a local cancer support organization because they know we rely on local support, just like they rely on local business. Way to go, Gazebo!

If you need some new lingerie, please consider shopping local with our friends at Gazebo, located at  14 Center St, Northampton, MA.


Submit Your Comment to Oppose Public Charge Rule

The Trump Administration's proposed public charge rule has been published in the Federal Register The deeply flawed rule unravels longstanding, sound public policy that draws a clear line between the nutrition, health, housing and other public benefits that may be used without causing public charge consequences, and those that may not. This rule dramatically expands the list of programs that could trigger a public charge determination with adverse immigration consequences. Read our statement and  f actsheet .

We urge the public to join us in denouncing this mean-spirited proposed rule that will undermine decades of progress in reducing hunger in this country. The rule will increase poverty, harm health and learning, and weaken our communities. As the nutrition lead on the  Protecting Immigrant Families (PIF) Campaign Steering Committee, FRAC has launched a platform for the public to weigh in on how this rule will make hunger and poverty in this country far worse. Deadline to submit comments is on or before December 10, 2018.


November First-time Homebuyer Program

Our next First Time Home Buyer Program is just around the corner. 
We hope you'll spread the word!

Here are some reasons to come to our 4-part series: 

1) Incredible Loans! 
Because we offer a certified class, our participants are eligible to apply for competitive First Time Home Buyer mortgages.

2) Access to Down Payment and Closing Cost $$$. 
Participants receive the most up-to-date information for our geographic area! (Grants come from a variety of sources and are frequently changing. Income and credit guidelines apply.) 

3) Education, education, education!
We know that informed consumers are most likely to make smart choices! Participants hear presentations from home buying professionals that include attorneys, loan officers, Realtors, home inspectors, insurance agents, credit experts and more.

Wednesdays,  Nov. 7, 14, 28, & Dec 5 from 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Florence Bank  85 Main St, Florence

Sponsored by Valley Community Development and Freedom Credit Union

Puzzle of Parenting

In this session we will u nderstand how play can be a powerful parenting practice, l earn ways to help children develop friendship skills, l ink building relationships, using positive comments/encouragement, and play to children's behavior.  This is a free program.  REGISTER

October 15, 2018, 10:45am - 11:30am, Warren Community Elementary School, Warren, MA (register by Oct 8)

Why Do They Do What They Do? 
In this session we will e xamine why children do what they do, p ractice ways to determine the meaning of behavior, u nderstand how to make expectations clear for children, u nderstand effective ways to develop and teach household rules. This is a free program.  REGISTER

October 22, 2018, 10:45am - 11:30am, Warren Community Elementary School, Warren, MA (register by Oct 15)

Teach Me What to Do!
In this session we will d efine the concept of emotional vocabulary, i dentify feeling words and identify effective ways to teach feeling vocabulary, d emonstrate the use of books to support emotional vocabulary and social-emotional development, i dentify how the turtle technique can be used to cope with feelings of anger and disappointment, and l earn how to teach problem-solving skills.  his is a free program.  REGISTER


October 29, 2018, 10:45am - 11:30am, Warren Community Elementary School (register by Oct 22)




3 Secrets to Raise 6 Figure Major Gifts    Oct. 23, 1pm by Nonprofit Hub
Are you frustrated and overwhelmed by the idea of raising major gifts? If so, join Amy Eisenstein as she simplifies three important concepts of raising major gifts and shares 3 secrets her clients use to raise major gift, and which will ensure you can get started raising major gifts right now!    REGISTER

Did you know that last year nonprofits received over $36 billion through bequests and other planned gifts? The stats are clear, and if you haven't built out your planned giving program, you're leaving money on the table.
The good thing is End-of-Year is one of the best times to acquire new planned gifts so join our free webinar and learn more about what you can do to expand your planned giving program or how to get a new program started!     REGISTER
Amherst Survival Center

Behavioral Health Network, Inc.

Berkshire Children & Families
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Collaborative for Educational Services
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Community Action Pioneer Valley
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Musante Health Center
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Service Net
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United Arc
Click Here to see all of our Job Listings

Mark Your Calendars! 

Oct. 25 - Roads To Resilience 
Nov. 1HSF Employment Law


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