Children’s Care Packs ready on Children’s Grief Awareness Day

For her recent decade birthday, Gail-Ann Simon’s children, Jennifer, A.J, and Elizabeth created a fund in their mother’s honor to provide children who are visiting loved ones at the Miriam Boyd Parlin Hospice Residence, with a special care pack.  Gail-Ann has been a hospice volunteer since 2000.  She has spent countless hours providing comfort and care to hospice patients and their loved ones.  She has also volunteered at the children’s bereavement support program, HEARTplay, and Camp Erin® Boston, the children’s grief camp, since its inception. Her son A.J. said, “we knew this would be a cause near and dear to our mother’s heart. It combines her compassion for children first acquired while she was a teacher with her understanding of caring for a loved one with a serious illness of any age.”

It is only fitting that on Children’s Grief Awareness Day, November 15th the first Children’s Care packs will be ready for distribution to children visiting a loved one at the Miriam Boyd Parlin Hospice Residence in Wayland. Gail-Ann said, “My hope is that these packs will provide a small measure of comfort to the children and ease the transition they will be experiencing.”  Since learning of the fund Gail-Ann has given careful thought to including items in the care packs that will provide the right balance of comfort, guidance and diversion.  The care packs will include an age-appropriate grief guidebook, message writing materials and other items to help children express their feelings.

In Recognition of Mental Health Awareness Week The Parmenter Foundation Makes Grant to Advocates

November 1, 2018 – The Parmenter Foundation proudly announces that during Mental Health Awareness Week, it granted $25,000 to Advocates in Framingham, MA to support the Behavioral Health Partners MetroWest Referral Line.  The Referral Line is a collaborative partnership created by Advocates, South Middlesex Opportunity Council, Spectrum, and Wayside Youth and Family Support Network that has created a single point of access for behavioral health and social services in the Metrowest area. “As one of four agency partners in Behavioral Health Partners of MetroWest, Advocates is grateful for this significant investment by the Parmenter Foundation,” says Diane Gould, LICSW, president and CEO of Advocates. “Emotional health is an essential ingredient in overall health, and BHPMW offers a single front door to a full range of services for individuals and families, reducing the stress people often face in finding the help they really need.”

The Referral Line started receiving calls on its toll-free phone number in July 2017 and has responded to more than 800 calls to date for individuals and families in need of services. The goal of the referral line is to provide Metrowest residents, healthcare professionals, and other service providers streamlined access to expertise in the complex areas of mental health, substance use and addiction, housing and social supports for people of all ages. “The support of the Parmenter Foundation represents people in local communities helping BHPMW and the Referral Line to listen to the diverse needs of individuals and families and match them to the care they need,” says Anne Pelletier-Parke, LICSW, ACSW, executive director of Behavioral Health Partners of MetroWest (BHPMW). “We are grateful to The Parmenter Foundation for having the foresight to support the integration of behavioral health options for residents in Wayland and other Metrowest communities.” For assistance or more information, please contact BHPMW toll-free at 1-844-528-6800 or go to www.bhpmw.info.

“We were thrilled to be able to help bring the referral line to the Metrowest community with a previous grant,” says Michael Halloran, Executive Director of The Parmenter Foundation, “and the numbers of people served by this important initiative warrant our continued support.”  The Parmenter Foundation is an independent non-profit corporation dedicated to creating, supporting, implementing and promoting programs and activities that enhance the health and well-being of the Metrowest communities. The Parmenter Foundation relies solely on private funding to carry out its mission.  For more information or to give, please visit www.parmenterfoundation.org.

The Parmenter Foundation Supports Families Who Are Homeless with Grant to Family Promise Metrowest

October 11, 2018  – The Parmenter Foundation proudly announces that it has granted $10,000 to Family Promise Metrowest.  “This grant will assist Family Promise Metrowest to carry out its mission to transform the lives of families with children who are homeless by mobilizing a diverse community to provide shelter, education and comprehensive support.  We are excited to support such important work,” states Michael Halloran, The Parmenter Foundation’s Executive Director.   Family Promise strives to break the cycle of homelessness by providing shelter to Metrowest families who are homeless, professional case management to help families transition out of homelessness and into sustainable and secure housing, and a comprehensive approach to employment, including education, child care and transportation. Family Promise utilizes community resources to carry out its mission, including 19 host congregations that provide shelter with an additional 31 congregations and community volunteers providing meals and support. In 2017, Family Promise created a homelessness prevention program that supports families who are not yet homeless but at risk of eviction called the Local Initiative for Family Empowerment (LIFE). “In order to effectively address the issue of family homelessness, we recognized the need for a prevention program. Our LIFE initiative provides subsidies for rent in arrears, case management and group presentations for families who are working and have long term sustainability yet have run into difficult times. The Parmenter Foundation is a valued community partner who makes our programs possible as we face the issue of family homelessness together,” says Sue Crossley, Family Promise Metrowest Executive Director.

Parmenter Food Pantry Has New Home

The Parmenter Food Pantry has operated for over 25 years; providing food to Wayland residents in need. Since its beginning, operating out of the Parmenter building on Cochituate Road, it has been the only food pantry dedicated exclusively to serving Wayland residents.  The Parmenter building was recently sold. As such, the Parmenter Food Pantry has been seeking a new physical space to both store its food items as well as to distribute its fresh meats, fruits, vegetables and non-perishable canned and dry goods one day per month.  This week, The Good Shepherd Parish at St. Ann Church on Cochituate Road confirmed that it will partner with The Parmenter Food Pantry and provide the much-needed space.

“The Good Shepherd Parish at St. Ann Church is a natural partner for us as their parishioners have been donating food to, and have been volunteers at, the Parmenter Food Pantry for many years,” said Michael Halloran, Executive Director of The Parmenter Foundation.  He continued, “We are grateful to Father O’Leary and the people of Good Shepherd Parish for providing us space to continue the delivery of more than 5,000 meals to Wayland families each year.”

“Nancy Carapezza, a parishioner of Good Shepherd Parish, came to me with the plight of the Parmenter Food Pantry losing its location. She wanted me to ask the members of the Wayland Interfaith Leaders Association if any churches could host the food pantry. That night in prayer, I thought why not at Good Shepherd Parish at Saint Ann’s Church?” I, and the parishioners of Good Shepherd Parish, are thrilled to partner with The Parmenter Foundation and have the food pantry available for those in need,” said Fr. Dave O’Leary, Administrator of Good Shepherd Parish.

The first food distribution at St. Ann Church will be held on June 7th from 9:00 -11:00 AM. “It is very important that we continue to help feed Wayland’s most vulnerable population.” said Laurie Hojlo, Parmenter Food Pantry Director.  “Without a space for the food pantry, we were concerned that we would not be able to meet the needs of families during the summer months which are critical as other food programs offered through schools are no longer available.”

The Parmenter Food Pantry welcomes non-perishable food and toiletry donations as well as cash donations (for monthly fresh food purchases).  Non-perishable goods may be dropped off at St. Ann Church, 134 Cochituate Road in Wayland or at The Parmenter Foundation, 260 Boston Post Road, Suite 5. Cash donations may be made at www.parmenterfoundation.org/donate/. The Parmenter Food Pantry also seeks volunteers to help keep its pantry shelves organized and to assist with the monthly food distribution.  For additional information and future food distribution dates, please visit www.parmenterfoundation.org/foodpantry/

Grant to MetroWest Free Medical Program

The Parmenter Foundation proudly announces that it has made a $10,000 grant to The MetroWest Free Medical Program (MWFMP) in Sudbury for their “Close the GAP” program.  The goal of this new program is to Guarantee Access to healthcare Programming for the most vulnerable in our community.  The MWFMP plans to meet its goal by enhancing volunteer recruitment to add more physicians and registered nurse volunteers; expanding on-site testing services such as diabetes and heart disease testing; collaborating with new community healthcare partners that can provide patients with access to testing that is not available at the clinic; and creating a fund to assist patients with accessing diagnostic testing such as mammograms, x-rays and ultrasounds.  The MWFMP estimates that the Close the GAP program will reach approximately 800 un/underinsured patients in 2018.

“Despite the successes of health insurance reform, thousands of individuals and families either fall through the cracks of the system and aren’t eligible for insurance, or they can’t find a doctor that takes their type of coverage” says Executive Director, Kim Prendergast.  “Demand for our services is up 50% in the last year.  Our program engages dedicated volunteer health care providers to assure that all people have access to care, regardless of their ability to pay – and this support is vital to equipping those volunteers to provide care to people who desperately need it.”

The MetroWest Free Medical Program was established in Sudbury in 2004 as an outreach program of Congregation Beth El.  It is a volunteer-physician led program providing free health care services to the medically underserved in Metrowest. The program expanded to Framingham in 2008 and created a Vision and a Women’s Health program.  With over 250 volunteer physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, social workers, health educators and more, the MetroWest Free Medical Program serves over 1,000 patients per year with over 1,800 medical visits.  For more information, please visit www.metrowestfreemedicalprogram.org