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Giracca, a Berkshire County native, is a writer and former writing professor who most recently taught at the University at Albany.

Literacy Network Adds Two New Staff Members

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Silva, who came to the Berkshires at age 10 from Bogotá, Colombia, currently teaches Spanish at Berkshire Country Day School.
LEE, Mass. — Amanda Giracca and Miguel Silva have joined Literacy Network of South Berkshire as Development & Communications Associate and Learner Liaison, respectively.  
 
"Amanda and Miguel bring the necessary professional and personal skills to their respective roles," Executive Director Leigh Doherty said."It takes a team, and I am really excited by this one." 
 
Giracca, a Berkshire County native, is a writer and former writing professor who most recently taught at the University at Albany. She has been a volunteer tutor for LitNet, and served as an intern for the organization's annual appeal starting last fall.  
 
Silva, who came to the Berkshires at age 10 from Bogotá, Colombia, currently teaches Spanish at Berkshire Country Day School. The newly created role of Learner Liaison is tasked with improving outreach between the organization's staff and largely Latinx immigrant learners.  
 
The new additions come at a time when LitNet has been focused on adapting to virtual tutoring during the pandemic and has been steadily placing tutors with learners who come to the organization for help with general literacy, improving their English, and/or US citizenship application assistance. 
 
Those interested in becoming a volunteer tutor with LitNet can email info@litnetsb.org.  

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Lee Bank Establishes Foundation to Build on Community Reinvestment

LEE, Mass. — Lee Bank has created the Lee Bank Foundation and project distributing $250,000 through the Foundation, a more formal entity for community donations. 
 
"Lee Bank's community contributions stretch back to its origins in 1852, but establishing Lee Bank Foundation sharpens our focus even further," said Chuck Leach, president of Lee Bank. "The Foundation also simplifies the application process for organizations doing meaningful work to support our Berkshire community."
 
The recently renovated Marble House will house the foundation along with the new financial wellness service, for which hiring is under way.
 
In recent years, Lee Bank has typically set aside at least 5 percent of its annual net income for the support of area nonprofits. This giving has been on the rise: in 2020, Lee Bank contributed nearly $179,000 to community nonprofits; in 2019, $145,000 and in 2018, $120,000. Last year, Lee Bank's distributions included $50,000 to the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund for Berkshire County.
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