WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Wild Oats Market recently celebrated the one-year anniversary of its Round Up For Change program with a $3,353.57 donation to the Williamstown Farmers Market's Community Essentials Initiative.
The program allows customers to round up their total purchase amounts at checkout to benefit a local non-profit serving the community. One hundred percent of the funds collected go directly to that month's featured partner.
Since initiating the program in June 2020, Wild Oats has donated more than $38,000 to 13 different organizations.
"Our co-op has always been focused on keeping money here in our community through relationships with local farmers, artisans and businesses," said marketing and owner-relations manager Scott Menhinick. "But Round Up For Change allows us to also interact with, and directly benefit, so many other essential organizations serving the Berkshires."
Past recipients include Berkshire Helping Hands, Elizabeth Freeman Center, Hoosic River Watershed Association, Office of Veteran Services, ROOTS Teen Center, the Brien Center and Williamstown Youth Center, in addition to those helping their neighbors overcome food insecurity issues, such as the Al Nelson Friendship Center Food Pantry, Berkshire Food Project, Community Bible Church Food Pantry and Hoosac Harvest.
"It's amazing that such a simple idea can generate such a positive impact on so many people living here in Williamstown, North Adams and other nearby towns," said general manager Netse Lytle. "Our partner organizations express an incredible amount of gratitude for this extra funding source and our guests often tell me how much they appreciate this easy and inexpensive way to make such a tangible difference here in our community."
Throughout the month of July, everyone shopping at Wild Oats has the opportunity to round up at the register to support Williamstown Rural Lands, a land conservation trust that conserves and promotes the forests, fields, farms and natural habitats of our region for community use and the benefit of future generations. More information is available here.
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Williamstown Community Chest Accepting Applications
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown Community Chest is accepting applications for its 2021 Mary and Henry Flynt Grants.
The application deadline is Oct. 1, 2021.
The bequest that established the grant program specifies that grants will be made annually, based on a competitive process to "…persons or entities (including the Town of Williamstown) that provide services to the town or its residents (although not necessarily exclusively)."
The criteria for reviewing applications will "…relate to the maintenance or improvement of the quality of life of the residents of Williamstown, defined broadly."
The regional school committee last Thursday heard preliminary enrollment data for its three schools. Although the official date to report a head count to the state comes on Oct. 1, the early numbers show significant increases at Lanesborough Elementary and Williamstown Elementary.
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The board met with a single-item agenda to consider its course in light of last week's directive issued by the Lee-Lenox-Stockbridge Tri-Town Health Department, which instituted a mask mandate for all indoor spaces and "crowded outdoor public events."
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