With arms wide, Grants Committee Chairman Paul Sullivan, and President Liz Tavares, greets the ensemble of Newton's elite non-profit representatives and our Rotarians to the awards ceremony held at our luncheon on Tuesday, August 1st. This annual event is always one of the most anticipated and fun meetings of the year, as we get to greet and interact with the people who are responsible for so much good work in our community. It was pointed out many times during the hour that although Newton is perceived to be an affluent suburb, there are thousands of families who need help to make life in the Garden City easier to manage. Forging supporting partnerships with these organizations is a key part of accomplishing Newton Rotary's mission.  
Gathering everyone at the Scandinavian Living Center in West Newton, the Rotary Club of Newton handed out checks to a dozen different non-profits to support current projects that directly benefit deserving families and kids in the community.  The list includes long-term partners such as Family Access, Springwell, The West Suburban YMCA, The Newton Boys and Girls Club, Second Step, Newton Community Development Foundation, and Newton At Home.  Several new [to Rotary] names received support, such as One Love Foundation, Newton Police Department’s Cops and Kids camp, the Scandinavian Living Center, Fig City News, and the Leonard Zakim Center at Dana Farber.
Awards ranged from $500 to $2500, and each one is funding an incremental service, or subsidizing additional participants in existing programs.  Representatives from all the organizations each got up to tell about their overall mission and how the grant money will be used. It was a very inspiring session as it became obvious that so much good was being accomplished in so many different ways.  The money for the grants was raised by The Newton Rotary Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) organization, throughout the year from a variety of sponsors and fundraising events.
There are people who we've known for many years, and a number that we've just met, but we all thoroughly enjoyed the day - and universally shared our Rotarian motto of "Service Above Self".