Deborah Schachter

Host, Giving Matters

Deborah Schachter is a Senior Program Officer at the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, New Hampshire's statewide community foundation. For more than 13 years, she has been responsible for statewide and regional grant-making; spearheaded a range of special initiatives; and worked with nonprofits, donors, public officials, businesses, and other community leaders to advance community well-being on the Foundation's behalf. She initiated and has led the Foundation’s work on Giving Matters, in partnership with NHPR, since the inception of the series in 2001.

Contact

Giving Matters Program Page

The CDC estimates that 1 in 4 women and 1 in 9 men in the United States are victims of domestic violence at some point in their lives. While trying to overturn those numbers with its community-based violence prevention programs, Turning Points Network helps victims of domestic and sexual violence escape abusive relationships.

The Boys and Girls Club is more than a place to simply do homework or hang out with friends. Brittany Wheeler joined the Concord chapter four years ago, during her first year of high school. The club fosters a sense of community among the participants of its after-school program. As Wheeler says, it’s a place where kids “can feel safe after school and not get into trouble.”

Chris Jensen, NHPR

Affordable Housing, Education and Development (AHEAD) provides low-income housing, but also helps people with an array of financial issues from budget counseling to foreclosure intervention.

The Gordon’s house in Colebrook started out as a second home, but 11 years ago in anticipation of retirement they moved into the house full time.

 

Courtesy Rachel justmakeit via Flickr/Creative Commons

Families in Transition provides safe, affordable housing and support services to families and individuals who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. The goal is to help people achieve self-sufficiency. Rebecca moved into Families in Transition housing when her youngest daughter was two months old.

The North Country Teacher Certification Program is a collaboration between Plymouth State University and White Mountains Community College. The program aims to increase the number of highly qualified teachers in the North Country. 

Amelia Alton was a pre-school teacher with more than 20 years of experience, who wanted to be a classroom teacher, “I always wanted to try my hand at the first and second grade level. But, I needed a different certification.” In 2010, with the help of the NCTCP, Alton went back to college and received her certification.

Courtesy David Mulder via Flickr Creative Commons

The Children’s Dental Network offers preventive dental services in 27 schools in and around Derry, NH to children who wouldn’t otherwise have access to those services. Jeanne Carroll and her husband are both college grads, and considered themselves “middle class;” they never thought they would have difficulty providing dental health care for their three children. 

Courtesy Niall Kennedy via Flickr/Creative Commons.

The work of the New Hampshire Food Bank is well established in the state, providing millions of pounds of food every year to food pantries and soup kitchens north and south. Less well-known, perhaps, are the programs it has developed that address the causes of hunger -- helping people get training that leads to employment and to food security.
 

Scala

3S Artspace is a Portsmouth nonprofit working on renovating a large building into studio space for artists, a farm-to-table restaurant, performance space and a gallery. For Catherine Scala, finding studio space here gave her the boost to continue her career as an artist.

 

NHPR/MacNameeKing

The Appalachian Mountain Club works with Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG), providing summer work opportunities to North Country students. Students learn about trail stewardship and conservation, and gain practical job skills. Cory Arsenault and Samantha Roux were part of a crew doing trail work.

Roux says the trail work is intensive and demanding, “building rock staircases, bridges. We clean the trail 

  off for people.”

NH Boat Museum

The New Hampshire Boat Museum in Wolfeboro is a showplace for antique boats and New Hampshire’s boating history. The museum also runs summer boat-building workshops for kids. The two week program offers area youth the chance to build a canoe, a kayak or a skiff. 

Cheryl Senter

Girls at Work empowers girls by putting power tools in their hands, and teaching them how to use those tools. The girls build tables, sheds and bookshelves, but learn bigger lessons along the way. Hollie Brenton, 18, has worked with the program for ten years and says it has changed her life.

Home destroyed by Hurricane Irene.
Jim Greenhill / Flickr

When Hurricane Irene struck the Upper Valley in 2011, The Upper Valley Haven, an emergency shelter in White River Junction, was there to help those who had lost their homes. Al Carbonneau and his family were among those displaced. 

Cheryl Senter

Kids Culinary Arts teaches kids cooking and nutrition during after school programs, vacations and summer camps. The organization works in school districts and towns to get kids cooking and eating healthy foods. Matthew and Nicole Heiter, 11 and nine years old, have become experienced hands in the kitchen. Their mother, Lauren credits Kids Culinary Arts.

Gilmanton Land Trust

On her commute from Laconia to Pittsfield six days a week, Tobi Gray Chassie often stops at scenic spot in Gilmanton called Frisky Hill. When Chassie saw a sign telling of plans to develop the land, she felt that it was her duty to support the Gilmanton Land Trust in their protection of the land which meant so much to her.

Cheryl Senter

When Kat Morris's eldest daughter asked to try out for a play at The Winnipesaukee Playhouse, she could not have guessed the effect community theater would have on her entire family. 

Cheryl Senter

The Great Bay Stewards work to preserve and protect the Great Bay estuary through education, land protection and research. Sharon Musselman, one of the educators, is recently a retired teacher who often brought her own classes here to explore this ecosystem.

"I'm excited to be here at Great Bay Discover center," Musselman said. "I brought my first grade class to Great Bay for 15 years because it is such a great experience for first graders."

Seacoast Family Food Pantry of New Hampshire

The Seacoast Family Food Pantry began as the Ladies Humane Society in 1816 to assist families of fishermen. Now, it is still serving those in the community who need help. The pantry aids many families with children—and many elders. Jane is a widow living on a fixed income.

“There are a lot of things you can’t buy with food stamps, but down at the pantry, they cover just about everything that you would need in your household,” Jane said.

Journey Song

Journey Song, a group of singers based in the New Hampshire Seacoast, brings the solace of music to hospice patients and their families. Ed Brown remembers how the group sang for his wife, Judith Whipple Brown.

Ellingwood

The Cornucopia Project teaches kids to grow food -- and to make a lifetime of healthy eating choices. Susan Ellingwood and her third-graders in Dublin are old hands in their school garden -- which was established with help from the Cornucopia Project.

African Burying Ground NH

During the 1700's, many Portsmouth residents were of African descent– some slave, some free— and were buried in a segregated cemetery. That cemetery was built over, its boundaries obscured. A public works crew rediscovered the site and now the restoration of its dignity has begun. Kelvin Edwards is working on the Portsmouth African Burying Ground Memorial.

Chris Jensen / NHPR

 The Great North Woods Committee for the Arts enriches north country life by bringing authentic music and culture to local venues. Quebec native, Alice Carlson, grew up listening to traditional folklore music.

Courtesy Sarah Kirsch

Sarah Kirsch rescued her dog, Angel, from the Concord-Merrimack County SPCA, and enrolled Angel in a program to become a therapy dog through that organization. Now certified, Angel makes regular visits to nursing homes.

The presence of a therapy dog can have a significant impact on the residents.

Kirsch and Angel were directed to one resident, Pearl. Though she seemed to be unresponsive, her roommate informed Kirsch that she liked dogs.

Courtesy of The Webster House

The Webster House is a children's home in Manchester that has been in operation since 1884, caring for youth who are unable to live at home.

Gabrielle Dante came to The Webster House when she was in her mid-teens. She had been experiencing problems at home and at school, and was struggling to overcome an eating disorder.

Courtesy of The Raymond Coalition

The Raymond Coalition for Youth is committed to helping kids make healthy choices and form positive habits. Through its "Youth Action" program, the Coalition empowers teenagers, like Kirsten Roman, to involve themselves in community outreach. "I was really interested in helping out the community more, and to help my peers make good choices," says Roman. "We focus on positive choice: not doing drugs or alcohol; eating healthy and exercising."

epSos.de / Flickr/Creative Commons

Serenity Place is a substance abuse recovery center in Manchester, offering detox programs and education to those struggling to overcome addiction. For Stephanie, Serenity Place provided a solid foundation for her recovery from drug and alcohol problems.

Aldo Tapia / Flickr

MoCo Arts wants to change people's lives through creative expression and exposure to the arts. One of its students, Peter Fedrizzi, started dancing when he was 13, after a friend suggested he might have a natural ability for it.

"We were lying around one afternoon and I was stretching my feet, and she looked at them and said, 'Peter, people will kill for your feet in dance. You should try ballet.'"

Creative Common/Flickr audiolucistore

Professionals who dream of changing careers and becoming teachers have been doing so with the help of the Upper Valley Educators Institute since 1969.

Courtesy of Harbor Homes

When Matt Milbourn, a veteran of the first Persian Gulf War, found himself unexpectedly made homeless,  Harbor Homes was there for him.

In addition to operating a homeless shelter, Harbor Homes also manages a reintegration program, offering services, healthcare, and education to homeless veterans and their families. Matt earned his CphT (Certified Pharmacy Technician) through the program, and now teaches computer education and life skills classes at Harbor Homes.

NHPR, Cheryl Senter

The Tuttle Farm in Dover is the oldest family farm in the United States. When Bill Tuttle and his family, the 11th generation to farm this land, decided to conserve it, they turned to the Strafford Rivers Conservancy.

 

NHPR

Big Brothers/Big Sisters Alliance of New Hampshire matches kids with caring mentors.

Lexi was matched with her "big sister" Sarah Danforth, and the two regularly spend time together. Lexi’s three sisters each have "big sisters," too. Sometimes, all eight of them get together--for a swim, for a cookout, for a game night.

Danforth joined the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program because she wanted to enable her match to see and do things she may not have an opportunity to otherwise.

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