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.
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.
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."
The New Hampshire Preservation Alliance helps to save the places that are central to New Hampshire’s history and identity. The Alliance helped a group of townspeople in Acworth save that town’s historic meetinghouse, which had been a center of community for almost two centuries. The building was named one of New Hampshire’s “Seven to Save” by the Alliance, but was going to cost about $1 million to preserve.
Kathi Bradt was part of the committee that worked to preserve the meetinghouse.
Joe and Carrie were out of work and had run out of money. They had been living in a motel room with their two young daughters. The Crossroads House homeless shelter has helped them get back on track.
JOE: I was teaching in Maine part-time and suddenly there was no more work. So I said to my wife “let’s see what New Hampshire has - substitute teaching and stuff like that." We lost our place where we were living and we were living in a motel.
Yawa Agbenowossi came to the United States from Togo, in West Africa, as a young child. She discovered the Boys & Girls Club of Manchester when she was in middle school.
YAWA: Well, before I found the club, I just never took anything into consideration. I was never worried about the future. I found the club by a friend introducing it to me actually. She said that “you can come to the Boys and Girls Club” and soon enough I was coming there every day. They couldn’t keep me away from the club. That’s when I started to change.
The “local foods” movement is a growing trend. In South Tamworth, The Community School has embraced it – serving an open lunch for the community every week at no set charge, made of locally-produced foods. They call the program “Farmers’s Table.”
When Bob and Celine Richer decided to retire to New Hampshire, they knew they would need an energy-efficient home to be able to afford the long heating season. Bob contacted the New Hampshire Sustainable Energy Association for help. The Richers’s home is constructed of insulated concrete form with a geothermal and solar heating system.
Bob: The Sustainable Energy Association provided us guidance and encouragement along the way because there were so many things to choose from.
Since 1992, the New Hampshire Bar Association’s Domestic Violence Emergency Project has provided free legal services to low-income victims of domestic violence. Scott O’Connell is an attorney from Manchester who drives to a crisis center in Berlin once a month to volunteer his services, working there with local advocates. Donna Cummings is the director of the crisis center where O’Connell volunteers.
Good Beginnings of the Upper Valley pairs trained volunteers with new parents to help them with day to day needs after a child's birth. Ruth’s story is the mother of four, including triplets. Sally Wood is a Good Beginnings volunteer.
RUTH: When I found out I was expecting triplets I figured I would need some help, so I contacted Good Beginnings. They set me up with Sally, my volunteer.