Saturday December 29, 2012

BRATTLEBORO -- Mary Hancock of Putney recently joined 18 other seasoned community members in serving on Youth Services’ board of directors. The nonprofit youth serving agency is celebrating its 40th anniversary of helping Windham County children, youth, and families thrive.

A native Vermonter, Hancock worked in Massachusetts as a silkscreen printer for several years after majoring in fine art in college. She then returned to Vermont to raise her family. In addition to graphics work and illustrating children’s books, Hancock is also proficient in theater tech, commissioned to paint sets on occasion for a Philadelphia theater. Most recently Hancock made a living designing and sewing custom designs and formal wear from her home studio.

Devoted to children as a school volunteer and grandmother of one, Hancock also sews close to 100 sets of children’s pajamas each year with her sisters for a Save The Children related medical project in South America for children undergoing facial surgeries. She also knits mittens year ‘round for area schools and the Drop-In Center. "It is a great excuse to shop for and sew or knit with lots of fun fabrics and yarns and gives these kids an unexpected treat," Hancock explains.

Hancock credits her father, Eugene O’Connell of Montpelier as the inspiration for her work with and for children and her commitment to serving the community as a Youth Services board member.


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"He always taught us to share everything in life of which you have more than you need -- be it money, time or talent," said Hancock. "I hope by being part of Youth Services, I can help make a difference to area youth who are facing challenging times."

To learn how to get involved with Youth Services or to refer a youth for assistance, visit wwwyouthservicesinc.org or call 802-257-0361.