BRATTLEBORO >> The Compassionate Friends of Brattleboro, a national self-help organization for families that have had a child die, will hold its next monthly meeting Sunday, July 17, at 2 p.m. at the West Village Meetinghouse, 29 South St.

The Compassionate Friends provides highly personal comfort, hope and support to every family experiencing the death of a son or a daughter, a brother or sister, or a grandchild, and helps others better assist the grieving family.

Meetings are for all families regardless of race, religious orientation, economic background, or the cause and age of the child at death, from pre-birth up. All immediate family members including adult siblings are welcome.

Meetings are held each month the third Sunday of the month.

Living alone support group

TOWNSHEND >> Grace Cottage is hosting a Living Alone Support Group, meeting the third Wednesday of the month, starting July 20.

Support group meetings will include an informal group discussion on the challenges of living alone. Topics may include cooking and shopping for one, finding people to help with chores around the house or yard, how to meet others with similar interests, and other topics of interest to the group. Whether you have been living alone for years, or are new to living alone, this group welcomes you and your input.


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The group meets from 10:15 to 11:15 a.m. at the Grace Cottage Community Wellness Center, 133 Grafton Rd.. The facilitator is Alicia Moyer, the Support and Services at Home local coordinator. There is no charge to attend. Call 802-365-3753 to sign up.

'Be Tick Smart' program at Grace Cottage

TOWNSHEND >> Come to the Grace Cottage Community Wellness Center in Townshend on Wednesday, July 20, to learn more about preventing Lyme disease and anaplasmosis.

Disease-carrying ticks are tiny but mighty when it comes to wreaking havoc with one's health. During this presentation Megan Lynde, Public Health Nurse with the VT Department of Health, will share important information about the cause and symptoms of Lyme disease and anaplasmosis and provide guidance on ways to protect against ticks and prevent infection.

This program is offered free of charge. It will be held from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the Grace Cottage Community Wellness Center (Heins Building), located at 133 Grafton Rd. No registration is needed to attend.

Prouty raises more than $3 million

LEBANON, N.H. >> With a rainbow greeting early starters and showers throughout the day, more than 4,500 participants and some 1,200 volunteers welcomed a cool day in Hanover to raise more than $3 million for cancer care and research in the Prouty, Northern New England's largest charity fundraiser.

People from all over the country come together every July to raise funds through a wide range of activities for people whose interests run from golf to cycling 100 miles for two days in a row. Participants pitch in by walking or cycling through neighborhoods and roads in New Hampshire and Vermont, rowing on the Connecticut River, or hitting the links at the Hanover Country Club. It all supports Dartmouth-Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer's innovative research and ways to ease the journey of cancer patients and their families with such efforts as support groups, art and writing programs, a comfort cart, a resource library and gas cards.

"Even a rainy day doesn't keep our amazing Prouty family from showing up and blowing us away with their generosity every year," said Jean Brown, event director and executive director of the Friends of Norris Cotton Cancer Center. "When we see the energy and the joy that our participants put into this event, it fuels us throughout the year to make sure that their hard work translates into progress against cancer and a bit more ease in the life of every person with cancer."

Learn more about Norris Cotton Cancer Center research, programs, and clinical trials online at cancer.dartmouth.edu.

Medicare 'boot camp' set for July 18

BELLOWS FALLS >> Senior Solutions staff provides unbiased information about the Medicare system at Medicare Boot Camp. This free class will be held in Bellows Falls on Monday, July 18, from 10 a.m. to noon.

The class is for Vermonters who are new to Medicare. Family members who help these beneficiaries may also find it useful. Medicare has strict enrollment periods, and Medicare Boot Camp prepares participants make timely decisions about drug plans and supplemental plans as well as many other issues.

Space is limited; call in advance to the Senior HelpLine for registration and detailed location information at 1-800-642-5119. There is no fee, but donations are welcome. More classes are listed at www.seniorsolutionsvt.org .

Senior Solutions is also seeking volunteers to help with our Medicare department and outreach. To learn more, call the Senior HelpLine.

Women's wellness workshop set for July 22

SOUTH NEWFANE >> Visiting transformation guide, Kirina Knight, will be leading an overnight camping retreat for women, "Reclaiming Joy: Transcending Fears and Living Authentically," on July 22 and 23 at the Three Penny Lodge at 492 Dover Road.

The retreat will begin with a potluck, fire pit, and camp-out on Friday at 6:30 p.m.; workshops begin Saturday at 9 a.m. The fee is $120 to $145, sliding scale. Grain-free and vegan food will be available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner on Saturday at no extra charge. Rooms and childcare are available by arrangement. Limited to 12 women. To register, call Lynn or Kirina at 802-348-7984. For more information, visit www.SpottedArtist.com.

Let's Grow Kids applauds state's focus on high-quality affordable child care

BRATTLEBORO >> Let's Grow Kids applauds the Blue Ribbon Commission on Financing High-Quality, Affordable Child Care for giving Vermonters an opportunity to weigh in before the Commission issues a report to the Governor and Legislature recommending strategies to support affordable, quality child care in Vermont. The Commission is hosting a public forum in Brattleboro on July 26 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Winston Prouty Center.

The Stalled at the Start report, released by Let's Grow Kids in May, revealed that almost half of Vermont infants and toddlers likely to need care do not have access to ANY regulated early care and learning programs. Almost 80 percent of infants and toddlers likely to need care do not have access to high-quality programs, defined as regulated programs with 4- or 5-star recognition levels under Vermont's voluntary quality recognition and improvement system.

Additionally, recent statewide polling shows a growing majority of Vermonters believe the state needs to do more to ensure high-quality, affordable child care is available to all families who need it.

The Commission wants to hear more from Vermonters on the following three questions: What would help you the most with respect to accessing high-quality child care? What are the responsibilities of Vermont to help ensure all Vermonters have access to high-quality child care? What should we do to make accessible, high-quality child care more affordable in Vermont?

More information is available at buildingbrightfutures.org/blue-ribbon-commission.

Walk for Endometriosis set for Aug. 20

BRATTLEBORO >> A group of local women, members of the Three C's Foundation who have a disease called endometriosis, have a goal is to educate others and to share their knowledge. They are members of an online support group and host monthly support group meetings.

On Aug. 20, starting at 10:30 a.m., they are hosting A Walk for Endometriosis, one mile starting and ending at Brattleboro Savings & Loan at 221 Main St.

Endometriosis is a painful and debilitating disease that many have never heard of and those suffering with it are often left feeling alone and misunderstood. On average in the US, it takes 10 years from symptom onset to receive an accurate diagnosis. This is due to the lack of knowledge among the general public and medical community.

For more information about Three C's, visit www.carecopecure.org or find Care Cope Cure on Facebook.

The nurse is in

WALPOLE >> A wellness nurse from Home Healthcare, Hospice & Community Services will be available at Nurse Is In clinics where you can have your blood pressure checked and ask health questions. No appointment is necessary, and the service is provided free of charge to residents of all ages.

On Friday, July 22, the nurse will be in at Applewood Senior Housing in Walpole from 10 to 11 a.m. and at St. Peter's Church in North Walpole from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

For more information, call 352-2253 or 1-800-541-4145, or visit www.HCSservices.org.

Needs of the disabled

BRATTLEBORO >> The town of Brattleboro is interested in knowing the needs of its citizens with disabilities so that during an emergency local public safety personnel can perform their jobs more efficiently and provide special assistance, as needed.

If you or someone in your household needs extra assistance during an emergency please let emergency responders know in advance. Do you use a wheelchair or need wheelchair accessible transportation? Do you have trouble hearing or are you visually impaired? Are you on oxygen or do you have any other condition that hinders you from helping yourself in an emergency?

To register for special assistance in an emergency, call the Brattleboro Fire Department at 802-254-4831.

Grace Cottage community health team member now full time

TOWNSHEND >> Behavioral Health Specialist Caroline Chase is now working full time at Grace Cottage Family Health in Townshend, thanks to a grant from the Fanny Holt Ames & Edna Louise Holt Fund.

Chase joined the Grace Cottage staff in October 2015. A member of the Grace Cottage Community Health Team, her short-term counseling services are offered to the community free of charge, as are those of the other CHT members, which include two RN care coordinators, two health coaches, and a diabetes educator.

Chase holds a Bachelor's of Science from Mills College and a Master's of Science in counseling psychology from Dominican University. She is a licensed Mental Health Counselor. A practicing psychotherapist for the past 34 years, she works with adults, children, couples, and families. She lives in Conway, Mass.

Originally, the CHT's services were funded through a program established by the Vermont Department of Health, and that funding still supports the CHT in part. A recent grant from the Holt Fund has allowed Grace Cottage to expand those services.

The Fanny Holt Ames & Edna Louise Holt Fund makes grants to not-for-profit organizations that provide health and medical services to individuals living in and around Grafton, VT, where the Holt sisters were long-time residents. They were both long-time advocates of Grace Cottage.

The Grace Cottage CHT works with individuals to assess their health situations, develop plans, and establish attainable goals. This service is especially helpful for managing a chronic condition. A referral from a medical provider is not necessary. Any resident of Southern Vermont can contact the CHT directly for an appointment. No insurance is needed, and there are no co-pays or deductibles.

For more information about the Grace Cottage CHT, visit www.gracecottage.org/our-services or call 802-365-3715.