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Honoring Eileen Marie Kelly

June 9, 2021 • Pressroom
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Family and Friendship Forever

Eileen Marie Kelly was a longtime resident and volunteer of Cromwell. There was no act too big nor too small when it came to helping others – family, friends, neighbors, and strangers who were truly just friends waiting to happen. She lived with a traumatic brain injury brought on by an Arterial Venous Malformation. Since her unexpected death two years ago, her cousin, Kasey Harding and her family have been working on how they could honor Eileen’s life and love of Cromwell.

Kasey learned about the Community Foundation of Middlesex County’s Campaign for Bully-Free Communities Buddy Bench initiative when CFMC partnered with CHC and the Middletown Police Department to place a purple bench in Harbor Park last year. Sharing the idea with family and friends, Kasey soon began plans to have a bench placed in Cromwell in celebration of Eileen. Continue Reading »

Team-Building, Spotlight Award, and Random Acts of Kindness

November 7, 2019 • Events,Pressroom
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Students, educators, business owners, and community leaders came out in large numbers to rally for bully-free communities on October 3, in recognition of National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month. While the weather forecast, for the first time in six years, worked against an outdoor event, the Community Foundation and its Council of Business Partners are incredibly thankful that the rally site could move from EMPOWER Leadership Sports Center’s outdoor facility in Middletown to Sports on 66 in East Haddam.

The sixth annual Rally for Bully-Free Communities included team building activities, guest speakers, pledge taking, and the presentation of the Bully-Free Community Spotlight Award before a crowd of more than 400 people. Continue Reading »

Campaign for Bully-Free Communities Rally featured in Middletown Press

Cassandra Day joined us at Sports on 66 for our annual Campaign for Bully-Free Communities Rally

check out her story and photo gallery HERE in the Middletown Press

Sharing Bully-Free Messages on iHeart Radio with Renee DiNino

September 30, 2019 • In the News: TV and Radio,Pressroom
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We wish to give a big THANK YOU to our friend and Campaign for Bully-Free Communities Ambassador, Renee DiNino.

Renee has welcomed a variety of guests on her show to talk about the importance of being Upstanders, not bystanders, to support our neighbors and friends in times of need.

You can catch all the fun of our conversation with Renee HERE

Dave Director, Connecticut Lighting Centers and Founding member of the CFMC Council of Business Partners, Donny Marshall, CFMC Campaign for Bully-Free Communities Spokesperson, Renee DiNino, iHeart Radio and CFMC Campaign for Bully-Free Communities Ambassador, and Cynthia H. Clegg, President & CEO, Community Foundation of Middlesex County (CFMC)

Buddying Up for Positive Change in Essex

November 8, 2018 • Events,Pressroom
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Community Foundation of Middlesex County Supports Social Inclusion Youth Project

 

The “Buddy Bench” is a simple idea to eliminate loneliness and foster friendship on the playground. Representatives from the Community Foundation of Middlesex County and Rushford Academy recently joined students, teachers and parents at Essex Elementary School for a very special ribbon cutting ceremony. The Community Foundation’s Council of Business Partners Fund presented a Buddy Bench for the school’s labyrinth site, an initiative to create an outdoor space of community and inclusion. The wooden bench, with the words “Buddy Bench” spelled out in bright-colored letters, was built by Continue Reading »

Community Foundation of Middlesex County Recognizes Morgan High School with Bully-Free Spotlight Award

October 11, 2018 • Pressroom
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HIGHLIGHTS: 400+ stand together for change at Rally for Bully-Free Communities in Middletown; The Morgan School in Clinton Recognized For Positive School Climate.

Students, educators, business owners, and community leaders came out in record numbers to rally for bully-free communities at the EMPOWER Leadership Sports Center in Middletown on October 4, in recognition of National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month. Organized by the Community Foundation of Middlesex County (CFMC) and its Council of Business Partners Fund, the fifth annual Rally for Bully-Free Communities included team building activities, guest speakers, pledge taking, and the presentation of the Bully-Free Community Spotlight Award before a crowd of more than 400 people.

In attendance were educators and students in grades 5 through 12 from Clinton, Chester, Deep River, Essex, Westbrook, Middletown, Durham, Middlefield, East Hampton, North Haven, and Cheshire, as well as young adults with intellectual disabilities from Vista Life Innovations and MARC Community Resources. School bus transportation was funded by the CFMC Council of Business Partners. The morning program included team-building and self-empowering activities led by the staff at EMPOWER Leadership Sports; First Tee of Connecticut; Rushford; members of the Middlefield Volunteer Fire Company; Middletown School’s physical education teacher Amanda Amtmanis; State Trooper Dawn Taylor and K-9 Lucas; and volunteers from Xavier High School, North Haven High School, Rushford Academy, and the Community Foundation of Middlesex County.

Kayla Pelligrino, a student at Morgan High School in Clinton, spoke about how the positive environment at her school helped her to get involved with different groups and made her feel like she was part of a family. Dave Director, Chairman of the CFMC Council of Business Partners, and Dave Maloney, Director of Student Activities for the Connecticut Association of Schools, presented Morgan High School Principal Keri Hagness with the Bully-Free Communities Spotlight Award in recognition of the school’s ongoing work to sustain a school culture centered around individual uniqueness, diversity, acceptance and kindness.  The school program features a three-day summer orientation program for incoming freshmen that pairs them with upperclassmen who are there to help during the transition to high school, and well into the school year. Renee DiNino, Director of Community Affairs for iHeart Radio, and Chief Ambassador for the campaign, was also recognized for her community service work.

Sportscaster and former NBA/UCONN Basketball star Donny Marshall, the campaign’s spokesperson, shared his personal experiences as a victim of bullying, wrapping up the day’s events by leading the crowd in reciting of the campaign pledge, which promises to be an agent of change and stand up to mean-spirited behavior. For more information on the Campaign for Bully-Free Communities, call the Community Foundation of Middlesex County at 860-347-0025.

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