At its annual Local Legends for Literacy Gala on Tuesday, October 26, the Providence Rotary Club will honor East Side businessman and philanthropist Arthur Robbins with a Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his decades of innovative leadership to support education in Providence. Led in part by former New England lineman Pete Brock, several current and ex-Patriots, Red Sox, and PC basketball players and media celebrities are expected to join the gala to help raise money for the Rotary’s childhood literacy initiative, a multi-year effort to advance literacy among Providence schools by providing state-of-the-art teaching materials as well as tutoring and mentoring by club members. More than 5,000 students will be impacted this year alone. The event will be held at Marriott Hotel and is open to all. Ticket and sponsorship information is available at ProvidenceRotary.org.
The Summit Neighborhood Association is gearing up to resume their annual Fall Cook-Off, tentatively scheduled for Thursday, October 28 at Seven Stars Bakery on Hope Street. Anyone is invited to attend and submit their favorite fall-themed dish to the competition. This year the featured ingredient is apple. Attendees will vote on their favorite dishes, and entrants will have the chance to win fun prizes donated by local shops and merchants. Little ones (and big ones, if they are so inclined) are encouraged to come dressed in their Halloween finest.
At press time, SNA is also working on coordinating with other neighborhood organizations to schedule a candidate forum for the District 3 RI State Senate seat recently opened up due to Gayle Goldin’s move to a federal position with the Department of Labor.
The Dorcas International Institute of RI, located at 645 Elmwood Avenue, is currently seeking clothes and household wares for newly arrived refugee families. As the only agency in the state authorized by the U.S. Department of State to resettle refugees arriving to the country, DIIRI serves the immediate needs of refugees, from airport pick-up to securing housing, along with cultural orientation, intensive case management, health screenings, and enrolling children in school and adults in their in-house Educating and Training Program.
To assist in their goal of empowering recently arrived refugees to successfully transition into their new communities, donations of basic necessities are needed. Their priority wishlist at this time includes gift cards; new or gently used casual and professional clothing and shoes for adults and children; accessories like ties, socks, belts, bags, scarves, and gloves; new toiletries; baby care items including diapers and bedding (but no food or perishable items); cleaning products; bath towels and washcloths; bed linens; dinnerware and cookware; and laptops and iPads. An Amazon wishlist of specific items needed at this time can also be found on their website.
As much as physical donations of clothing and household items are important, financial contributions are greatly appreciated to allow for flexibility in best providing resettlement services, and volunteers are a crucial component to all operations. For more information about helping DIIRI assist Afghan evacuees, visit DIIRI.org/proudly-welcoming-afghan-evacuees or for general donation information, visit DIIRI.org/ways-to-give.
Providence Animal Rescue League (PARL) in the Jewelry District is planning their first ever Howl-O-Ween celebration. The parking lot will be transformed into a trunk-or-treat area where dogs, kids, and families can collect candy and pet-themed treats from decorated trick-or-treat car stations. A vendor fair will be set up in the Outdoor Dog Yards where visitors can shop wares and play Halloween-themed games. Along with food trucks and a costume competition – for humans and pets alike – this event is sure to become a community favorite. PARL offers special sponsor opportunities for business members of the Jewelry District Association. To learn more, contact Hannah Veale at 401-421-1399 ext. 210 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also happening in the Jewelry District, tree planting spearheaded by volunteers Allison Paschke, Olin Thompson, and City Forester Doug Still continues with another session this fall. To get involved, email email@example.com. Work has also resumed on the River Walk from the Michael S. Van Leesten Memorial Bridge (also known as the Pedestrian Bridge) to Point Street. The project includes shoring up the bulkhead along the river and building a footbridge over the Ship Street inlet. When it’s finished, walkers will be able to stroll the west side of the river from the Point Street Bridge to the Crawford Street Bridge.