From the Community Service Office: What You Can Do to Make "Common Fire" a Success
"Above the fold" of this newsletter, I am sure you read from Bob Henderson about "Common Fire", the all school service day we are planning to execute on April 14. As adults who manage hugely busy lives supporting your work and vibrant family lives I know you are aware that events like this are long in the planning. I think of it like an act on the old Ed Sullivan show. Remember this one? A guy comes out and stands in front of about twenty vertical sticks and a stack of plates. He dexterously rotates one on a stick and you think to yourself, "how is he going to keep that thing going for very long?" Soon, he spins another and another and another, keeping a watchful eye on them as they careen in circles. When one gets too slow, and begins to move in langorous elipses, he rushes over and gives it a quick flip of his wrist, and continues to add plate after plate to the delight of the audience. By the end of the act, all the plates are rotating on their axes, in perfectly timed circles.
"Common Fire" is looking a lot like that from my point of view, but I am not the one spinning plates that quickly. When I asked for volunteers this summer to help locate sites for our work, make calls, walk the venues, figure out the work projects, meet to discuss details, assign the advisor groups, figure out transportation, buy and deliver equipment such as mulch, rakes, or paint, and work on public relations, a group of YOU signed up. Holly Bonomo, Lisa Pisano, Kristen Welo, Cindy Trull, Allison Graham, Betsy Edie, Chris Reynolds, Barbara Ito, and Jill Ellison agreed to work with members of the staff and faculty on the Steering Committee and have been working on all this since August. Much appreciation is due these visionaries: they are our "site developers." Others of you have offered to helm a site for Common Fire Day itself, and now that we have many of them (worksites for potentially 900 people) in place, I will be calling you to talk about your specific venue: Anne London, Lynn McCarthy, Nicole Zingoli, Dana D'Angeles, Hillary Allinson, Mary Dunne, and Alison Gordon, thank you for being site leaders. Faculty members who are giving their time and expertise to further this day by serving on the Steering Committee are adding this event to their busy schedules and deserve a round of thanks as well: Linda Hurley, Jenny Carlson-Pietraszek, Alex Gallagher, Elizabeth Benjamin, Michael Denning, Amy McBrien, Laura Yamartino, Thomas Forteith, and Alex Gallagher. (They say if you need something done, ask a busy person). A special thanks goes out to Mariana Vega also, a student who is spearheading the coverage of this event by the Nobleman.
There is still something vital you can do to be part of this work, and make sure that when we set sail on this venture in April, we do not go empty-handed to these nonprofits. Certain sites and projects we have taken on desperately need gently used items you may have right now. I ask that you follow next versions of this newsletter, and the weekly emails from both the middle and upper school watching for the collections that will follow. I know some of the items now, and will list them below so that you can set them aside from the pre-holiday clear out or the spring cleaning and keep them to send with us to these places. With your help, we will be able to make a significant impact on the lives of those we will serve. That is the meaning of "Common Fire." Each small flame we carry with us can unite to light our local world this year.
Please save for:
"Heading Home" (http://www.headinghomeinc.org/) We will be moving one homeless family into their newly acquired house on April 14. We need everything that family needs to set up housekeeping.
"Angell Memorial Animal Hospital and Shelter" (http://www.mspca.org/) We will be cleaning cages, distributing spay and neuter clinic information, and walking dogs. We need blankets, canned cat food, and towels.
"Circle of Hope" (http://circleofhopeonline.org/circle-hope-boston) We will be sorting and preparing welcome baskets for homeless families. We need toiletries and baby items for the shelter families.
"Household Good Recycling" (http://www.hgrm.org/) We will be working at this site that refurbishes household items like bedframes, dishes, towels, etc to give to people in need.
Your family can make all the difference. Your continued awareness and support of the collection drives for these items and others that will be set up soon is so important. We have made commitments to these organizations, and that is a value you embody for your kids when you help to keep this "above the fold" of your family's actions and intentions.
Thank you to all the amazing people, both faculty and parent, that are working together to make this event emblematic of the "common fire" that service has always been at Nobles.
Sandi MacQuinn, Director of Community Service