HAVERHILL — The Haverhill Firefighting Museum at 75 Kenoza Ave, will hold its seventh annual Kentucky Derby Gala Saturday, May 7, from 5 to 10 p.m.

This event will feature Southern fare, mint juleps, entertainment by Dan Sky and live streaming of the 2022 Kentucky Derby Run For the Roses.

The museum is seeking sponsors of the event and to sponsor individual horses to advertise your business and is also looking for donations of gift cards/certificates, services or items for the popular Mystery Balloon Pop.

The building is handicap accessible.

For sponsorship information or tickets ($60 each) visit www.haverhillfirefightingmuseum.org or contact Cindy at 978-994-1854 or cynthiagraham409@gmail.com or Pat at 978-835-1565 or toolittlefarm1@yahoo.com.

Haverhill student wins scholarship from Sheet Metal Workers Local 17

HAVERHILL — Northern Essex Community College student, Michael J. Sheehan, was awarded a one-year scholarship by the Sheet Metal Workers Local 17, a division of the SMART Northeast Regional Council. The Haverhill recipient will receive a total of $4,000 in funds to support them throughout their higher education.

The program, 100% funded by the membership of Local 17, ranges from one-time $750 scholarships to four-year scholarships totaling $16,000. For every hour a member works, seven cents is contributed to Local 17’s scholarship fund. Over time, this commitment and the collections have added up, making a big difference for hundreds of local students in paying for tuition, books, and other academic fees.

“Our scholarship program is part of our union’s commitment to giving back to the communities where our members live and work,” said SMART Northeast Regional Council President Bob Butler. “When we invest in these hard-working students, we’re helping build the future of these communities.”

Merrimack Valley Hospice Chaplain honored

LAWRENCE — Heather Angell, a chaplain with Merrimack Valley Hospice, will be honored with the St. Marcellin Champagnat Witness to Faith Award from Central Catholic High School. Angell, of Somerville, is a member of Central’s Class of 2000.

The awards ceremony will take place as part of the school’s Honoring Excellence: Champagnat Awards and Athletic Hall of Fame dinner on May 5 at 6 p.m. at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Boston-Andover, 123 Old River Road.

The Champagnat Awards are presented in honor of Marist Brothers founder St. Marcellin Champagnat, who urged his followers to live their lives “doing ordinary things extraordinarily well.”

“It is the highest privilege to provide spiritual care for those who turn to Merrimack Valley Hospice for compassion at end of life,” Angell said. “After such a positive experience at Central Catholic, it feels like I’ve come full circle by returning to work in Lawrence – a place that still means so much to me.”

Angell joined Merrimack Valley Hospice in March 2019 and currently works as a chaplain associate at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center in Boston.

Castro named chief program officer at Family Services

LAWRENCE — Family Services of the Merrimack Valley has announced that Aida Castro has been named chief program officer. In this newly created role, Castro will continue to support Family Services’ mission of supporting children and families in reaching their full potential.

Castro joined Family Services in 2006 as a Parent Education Program Coordinator before being promoted to Family Programs Supervisor. Since then, she has led and executed many initiatives at the organization, including creating and expanding the Family Services’ fatherhood and healthy marriage and family programs.

In 2011 Castro was promoted to Community Programs Manager, becoming the first Latinx/Hispanic senior leader at Family Services. She most recently held the role of Director of Community Programs, where she worked closely with staff to improve the service delivery to clients, strengthened community and stakeholder relations, and advanced youth and family programming.

Castro’s efforts helped Family Services receive an increase in federal, state, local, and private funding. “Through her entire professional career, Aida has shown extreme dedication to helping others,” said Elizabeth Sweeney, CEO. “Aida has strong ties to the local community and has received local and state recognition for all her work. We are thrilled to have Aida continue her professional advancement at Family Services and look forward to her ongoing contribution to the organization.”

Free support group for children forming

HAVERHILL — Recognizing that kids grieve in their own unique way, Merrimack Valley Hospice is offering a free grief-support program for children.

In the biweekly sessions, which are led by a facilitator from Merrimack Valley Hospice’s licensed, credentialed bereavement staff, children ages 6 to 15 can connect with peers, express creativity, learn about bereavement and create a lasting memory while enjoying a snack. The group will meet every other Tuesday from 4:15 to 5:30 p.m., from April 12 through June 21 at High Pointe House, 360 North Ave.

Susan Toleos, manager of bereavement services and community education at MV Hospice, said it can be challenging for caregivers of children who are grieving a loss to know what to say or do.

“Providing a sense of community, shared experiences and connection are especially important in helping children cope and ultimately heal,” she said.

Additional support groups offered by MV Hospice, all of which are free of charge and open to the public, include Cooking and Eating for One, Loss of Adult Child, Loss of Spouse/Partner and LGBTQ+ Grief Support. To register, call 978-552-4510. Visit online at MerrimackValleyHospice.org.

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