Over 600 Rotarians from 5 Districts in New England and Canada attended the Mount Washington Summit this past weekend, including Westborough's own Shelby Marshall and Elliott Rittenberg (shown here with District Governor Karin Gaffney), and District Governor Elect Steve Sager.  Against a backdrop of majestic mountain peaks and rainbows, attendees made new connections and participated in breakout sessions with an array of subjects including Vibrant Clubs, Service Projects, the Opioid Crisis, Hunger, Polio Plus and the Rotary Foundation. In a session on Leadership, former Vermont Governor Jim Douglas and former Governor Jane Swift from Massachusets addressed a standing room only audience in a wide-ranging discussion that touched on ethics, service, youth engagement, and of course, politics.
 
Among the highlights, Rotary International President Ian Riseley addressed the conference on Friday evening, underscoring the need for Rotary to adapt to the changing needs of its members in today's busy society. Later in the conference, Riseley's President's Representative, Past RI Director Karen Wentz, introduced Rotarians to Rotary's updated Vision Statement:  "Together we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change across the globe and in our communities."  
 
On Saturday evening, Travis Roy, who was severely injured during the first eleven seconds of his college ice hockey career as a Boston University Terrier, leaving him paralyzed from the neck down, inspired Rotarians by sharing how his positive attitude helped him on his journey to a fulfilling and productive life. After spending his entire youth preparing to play college hockey, when he finally made it onto the ice in that first and only game, he told us how, even after he was injured, he said to his father that he had "made it" - he had fulfilled his dream. Travis said that in life, sometimes we choose the challenge, and other times, the challenge chooses us. Travis went on to share that it was the power of positive attitude and the appreciation of simple things that helped him find value and purpose in his new paradigm.
 
Our final speaker on Sunday, Razia Jan, told us of her continuing efforts to educate young women in Afghanistan, and of the opening of the new Razia Jan Institute, the first women’s post-secondary vocational school in rural Afghanistan. Razia moved to the United States in 1970 and opened a small tailoring business in Duxbury. She was the first female member of the Duxbury Rotary Club and soon went on to become Club President.  After decades of war in Afghanistan, Razia was appalled at the treatment of women and the lack of education that she found when she returned home. Razia decided to build a school and shared with us stories of the opposition she faced from the local the local male population, including standing up to tribal leaders who threatened to stone her if she pursued her dream of educating young women. Today, at the Razia Jan Institute, students become certified in health services/midwifery while also learning English and computer literacy. Both the Institue and the Zabuli Education Center, with its K through 12 students, have received support from a number of Rotary Clubs both here and abroad.
Mt. Washington Summit an Inspirational Success 2018-05-08 04:00:00Z 0
Ron Goodenow, Club Photographer, documented fellowship enjoyed by our members during evening meetings in April and May.  At our May 2nd meeting at Red Heat Tavern, there was no ice, no snow…just many Rotarians, guests and potential new Rotarians enjoying a mid-summer evening on the patio of RedHeat, a new restaurant in town. Providing great fellowship and recruitment opportunities, these monthly socials will become a regular feature of club life.
 
To see Ron's complete supplements for our April and May evening meetings, click here.
 
 
Rotary Club of Westborough Membership Social 2018-05-08 04:00:00Z 0
RI President-elect Barry Rassin’s theme for 2018-19, Be the Inspiration, asks Rotarians to inspire change in the world and in each other. “I ask all of you to Be the Inspiration to help Rotary move from reaction to action — to take a hard look at the environmental issues that affect health and welfare around the world and do what we can to help.”
Be The Inspiration 2018-05-08 04:00:00Z 0
The Westborough Veterans Board announces its inaugural educational luncheon is scheduled for Thursday, April 19, 2018, at the Senior Center, 4 Rogers Road, Westborough, MA 01581. Learn about Massachusetts benefits for veterans from Keynote Speaker – Secretary Francisco A. Ureña.  The event will start at noon in the Westborough Senior Center and will be followed by lunch (free for veterans, courtesy of the Rotary Club of Westborough). 
 
Schedule of events:
12:00-Noon Welcome and introductions
12:05 pm Speaker Secretary Urena
12:30 pm Veteran lunch (compliments of the Rotary Club)
Veterans' Luncheon April 19 2018-04-15 04:00:00Z 0
Amber Bock, Westborough's Superintendent of Public Schools, joined us at our lunch meeting on March 7.  Ms. Bock, shown here with Club President Shelby Marshall, used the opportunity to inform our members about the proposed school budget for which the department was seeking approval at the March 17th Town Meeting.  The school department is seeking a 4.65% increase in its budget, for a total of just over $51.2 million.  Virtually all of this increase is driven by the expanding student population in the Westborough school system, which has increased by 140 students from last year's budget, with a total enrollment of 3,969 as of January 11.  Ms. Bock pointed that while the school system delivers an outstanding educational product, t the town's per-pupil cost of education is approximately $15.5K, which is $300 - $400 below the state average.  Additionally, the budget increase sought for this year is less than the state average of 8.6%, even though the system is experiencing higher growth rates than most other communities.  The School Department budget was overwhelmingly approved after a vigorous debate at Town Meeting.
School Superintendent Amber Bock Visits Our Club 2018-03-20 04:00:00Z 0
The Westborough Veterans Advisory Board (WVAB) is sponsoring a community drive to provide care packages to a battalion of infantry troops primarily from Massachusetts that are stationed in the Middle East.  The battalion consists of 189 males and 3 females.
 
The WVAB has established locations where residents of Westborough who wish to sponsor a care package may come and pick up boxes.  Each box will have instructions as to the items requested by this infantry battalion.  Residents should use the “shopping list” as a guide. When the boxes are filled they should be returned to a location listed below no later than February 23, 2018.
 
The locations for pick-up and drop-off are:
 
  • Westborough Veterans Advisory Board, Town Hall Lower Level
  • The First United Methodist Church, 120 West Main Street
  • Westborough Public Library
  • Westborough TV Station, West Main Street
  • Senior Citizens Center, 4 Rodgers Road
 
The First United Methodist Church (FUMC) of Westborough is assisting the Veterans Advisory Board with the logistics. Donations to offset the cost of postage to deliver the packages to our troops can be made with the check payable to Westborough FUMC, 120 West Main Street, Westborough, MA 01581.  Please make a note referencing the VAB Care Packages.
 
For further information, contact:
 
John Gallinagh, member
Westborough Veterans Advisory Board
508-769-7813
ionacg@verizon.net
 
Care Packages for Troops 2018-02-06 05:00:00Z 0
The Rotary Club of Westborough is excited to announce its participation in the ESSEX Short-Term Exchange Program. The club will sponsor Daniel Proudman from Hopkinton, MA. Daniel will travel overseas this summer for about three weeks. He will stay with a student and family and he will be welcomed by the local Rotary club. His actual destination is not yet known. His first choice is Taiwan where he plans to immerse himself in the culture and where he can practice his Mandarin. Daniel and his family will reciprocate and host the student for three weeks.  During this time the RCW will welcome the student and host a lunch/dinner in the student’s honor. Every year, about 8,000 young people from around the world participate in Rotary’s Youth Exchange Program. To learn more visit http://www.exchangestudent.org.
Westborough Rotary Sponsors ESSEX Exchange Student 2018-02-05 05:00:00Z 0
Westborough Rotarian Jin Huang opened the eBridge Montessori School in 2005.  At our meeting on January 31, Jin told us about the principles of a Montessori education, based on teaching methods developed by Dr. Maria Montessori more than 100 years ago. With a child-centered philosophy, a Montessori education focusses on practical, sensorial, language and math skills. The program uses specially designed objects and materials to provide concrete examples of real-world concepts. There are now more than 4,000 Montessori schools in the United States, and nearly 7,000 worldwide, with programs available for pre-school through high school and beyond.  eBridge Montessori in Westborough offers education for children from 15 months to 6 years of age. To learn more about a Montessori education, see Jon's entire presentation on our Facebook page or visit the school's website.
eBridge Montessori School Elliott Rittenberg 2018-02-05 05:00:00Z 0
Westborough Rotary is proud to sponsor the Rotary Spokes in the town's Recreational Basketball League this year.  Here we see some photos provided by Paul McGrath as the Ppokes come from behind to win 57 to 51 in a game on January 8.  Pictured at near right we see #15 Matt Crowley, a junior, driving for two, and at far right, Brendan Mcgrath concentrates before sinking a foul shot. To support the kids and take in a game, visit Westborough Recreation's website to see standings and schedule.
 
 
 
Rotary Spokes Rec Basketball 2018-01-23 05:00:00Z 0
Cultivate Care Farms in Bolton offers outpatient farm-based therapy through a model that challenges traditional mental health programs, Andrew Lapin, founder and executive director, explained to our membership during our meeting on January 17. Andrew's research showed that traditional therapy techniques lacked effectiveness and he sought to develop an affordable, innovative approach for individuals and families. By empowering the Care Farm system, the program rescues both humans and animals from despair, abandonment, and pain, and creates communities of mutual growth and healing. Founded in 2015, Cultivate Care is based on a centuries-old approach to therapy that began in Europe which matches people with animals to build a connection.  The facility uses the farm and animals to support behavioral counseling, serving between 20 and 40 outpatient clients each week. Therapists work alongside the clients as they perform chores and interact with the animals while their stories naturally unfold.
 
Andrew explains that "there’s a lot of power that comes from riding a horse and learning how to control a 1,200 pound animal when you’re just a 60 pound kid, or through the process of working with the sheep and seeing how skittish they might be, but over time they learn to trust.”  There are more than 50 animals on the farm, including horses, pigs, sheep, cows, chickens and bees. Each animal serves a different purpose in the therapy process for the Farm's clients.
 
In 2017, Cultivate Care Farms became a non-profit organization, furthering Andrew and his staff's vision of expanding Care Farming in America.  The program now accepts insurance and strives to be inclusive to all who may benefit from its services. It is one of the only facilities in the area that can accept and support LGBT individuals in crisis.  To learn more about Cultivate Care Farms, visit their website, and watch Andrews entire presentation on our Facebook page.
Cultivate Care Farms 2018-01-23 05:00:00Z 0
The Free Holiday Store was open from Monday, December 4th through Friday, December 22nd.  Julia Oneil-Welch from Youth and Family Services provided the following statistics for this year's efforts:
 
  • 117 families served
  • 254 children and teens received gifts
  • 3063 total number of gifts distributed
  • 2541 toys & gifts, other items
  • 389 books
  • 133 purses from the Purse Project
Also distributed were wrapping paper, bows, tape, gift cards, gift tags, holiday cards, gift bags, hats, mittens, shoes, string backpacks, clothing items, personal items and other miscellaneous donated items.
Free Holiday Store 2017 - Final Update 2018-01-23 05:00:00Z 0
Presenting Sponsors