Watertown Community Foundation Awards $35,000 in Educational Grants

The Watertown Community Foundation (WCF) in collaboration with Life Sciences Cares and four life science companies has awarded grants totaling $35,000 for Watertown Public Schools. The addition of the STEM Fund this year builds on Watertown Community Foundation’s annual school- based educational grants program and increases total funding for the foundation’s grants in support of funding science, technology, engineering, and math programming. “We are grateful for this new partnership and funding to expand our ability to support Watertown teachers through our annual education grant program. It truly helps transform our grant giving capacity and provides teachers and our schools with more resources to support students in the classroom.” said Eleanor Donato, Watertown Community Foundation School Grant co-chair. This collective giving program also allows companies, leaders, and employees in the burgeoning Watertown life sciences field to learn about Watertown Public Schools and forge deeper relationships with the school STEM community.

Lacrosse Games to Raise Funds to Fight Cancer, Organized by Non-Profit Led by Watertown Resident

A sports-based non-profit started by a Watertown resident will host two lacrosse all-star games to help raise money for cancer research. Watertown’s Michael Slonina started A Shot for Life in 2010 when his mother was diagnosed with a potentially malignant brain tumor. He shot baskets for 24 hours straight in the first year, 2011. The non-profit organization grew out of Slonina’s effort, and has included basketball shooting contests, a home run derby, and now the ASFL Clash Against Cancer. The sport allowed A Shot For Cancer to expand.

Make Valentine’s Day Cards for Seniors, Teachers & Others with the Rotary Club

The Rotary Club of Watertown invites the public to join them to make Valentine’s Day cards for local seniors, teachers and other service workers. The card making event will take place on Tuesday, Jan. 25 from 9 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. at Panera Bread, 321 Arsenal St. in Watertown. “We would love to have any interested community members join us (kids and adults welcome) in our card making!”

LETTER: Wayside Thanks Generous Donors During the Holiday Season

Social Service Resource Specialists/Wayside staff preparing holiday gifts and gift cards for families to pick-up. The holiday season is upon us and it’s the most wonderful time of the year for many. Yet for some, it can be challenging to afford gifts for their loved ones. Each year, Wayside Youth & Family Support Network’s Multi-Service Center works with local churches and businesses, to provide holiday gifts for families. Once again this year, families served through Watertown’s Social Services Resource Specialist Program were recipients of these generous donations.

LETTER: Watertown Community Fridge Fulfilling Important Role in the Community

I first heard of the community fridge concept last year, after they began to appear in the Boston area in response to the pandemic illuminating and exacerbating the amount of people experiencing food insecurity. The one recently established in Watertown — in the parking lot of Francis Market, 1084 Belmont St. — is an accomplishment for which we should all be grateful to its founders and be proud as a community. A community fridge not only plays a direct role in addressing food insecurity and food waste, but also teaches us so much about what it means to be neighbors. The motto you’ll find on the Watertown Community Fridge’s posters and postcards says it all:“Take what you need, give what you can.” The purpose of a community fridge is to provide free food 24/7 to anyone who visits.

Alzheimer’s Association Hosting Luminary Walk of Hope in Watertown

The Alzheimer’s Association Massachusetts/New Hampshire Chapter will host the Luminary Walk for Hope on Dec. 20 from 7-8 p.m. at Victory Field in Watertown. The Alzheimer’s Association sent out the following information:

As we prepare for the Winter Solstice, we invite you to join us for a luminary lighting and walk of hope for the first survivor. Enjoy a musical performance and hot chocolate bar as we honor those living with dementia as well their caregivers, and remember all of those we have lost. This is a FREE outdoor event, all are welcome!

Entries Wanted for Watertown Holiday Lighting & Decorations Contest

Enter the Watertown Holiday Decorations and Lights Contest and win money for yourself and your favorite local charity. Which house in Watertown has the best holiday display? If you think it is your home, enter the Watertown Holiday Lighting & Decoration Contest. The winner will receive a $250 American Express gift card and $250 for your favorite Watertown charity or non-profit organization. Homes will be judged on the following criteria:

Unique design and creative use of lights and decorationsStoryline or themeDisplay and placement of decorations, animated objects, etc.Overall presentation

Judges will not enter the home or walk in the yard.

Nationwide Health & Wellness Program for Kids Started with Local Organization Teaming with Watertown Boys & Girls Club

A local non-profit organization that provides health and wellness classes to youth around the country got its start by working with the Watertown Boys & Girls Club. One for Health was created by a pair of friends since junior high school, Bruce Campelia and Tom Miller, who came up with the idea in 2011 while sitting next to Lake Winnipesaukee. They wanted to do something to help change the tide of rising childhood obesity and poor health in America, and came up with the idea of providing free classes. Miller had experience building brands having started an advertising specialty business from scratch and making it into a firm that is well known in the industry. Campelia founded technology start-ups and later moved into health and created a wellness center in Pennsylvania.