2 February: Renee Moss, Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Hampshire County

posted Feb 5, 2016, 10:24 AM by Amherst Club
President Andrea Battle called the meeting of the Amherst Club to order at noon on Tuesday, February 2nd, 2016, and welcomed us all. Happy Groundhogs Day!


She announced that there will be a board meeting after lunch.

Our members Glen Gordon and Philippe Galaski are both doing better.

Phyllis Lehrer distributed attractive announcement cards for the Cabaret. Each member was asked to send several on to friends. There is a reservation form with return envelope inside each card, making it easy for people to respond.

Barbara Freed suggested that each member might mail out five of these cards to friends. Ellen Kosmer suggested that we write a personal note on each card, inviting the recipients to the Cabaret, and pointing out the charities that we support.  

Barbara reported that there will be large advertisements in the Amherst Bulletin five weeks before the event. We also have large posters, which Barbara will distribute to each member for posting.  

Therese Brady Donohue reminded us that gift certificates and objects donated to the Cabaret Silent Auction need to be brought in on March 1st and put in her car which will be parked outside. Anyone who can solicit more auction items is encouraged to do so!

Guest:  Phyllis Lehrer welcomed Amy Gates, UMass alumna and pianist.

Raffle:  Andrea Battle won the wine, but she generously returned it to be raffled again. This time, Tony Papirio won. Claude Tellier won the $10.


Claude Tellier introduced our speaker,  Renee Moss, Executive Director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Hampshire County. Renee explained that her organization operates out of the Bangs Center, and is under the auspices of the Center for Human Development. Big brother Big Sisters trains mentors to partner with an individual young person. The mentor is called the Big, and the partner is called the Little. Bigs and Littles meet for 3-5 hours each week, to do anything they wish. It may be just going to the Big’s home to read together or cook something together; or to go for a walk, or visit a park or museum or theater. The idea is that the mentor does not have to do anything they would not ordinarily do, but chooses something that is fun for both participants, and includes the Little. The Littles are aged from 8 or so up through teenagers. Big Brothers Big Sisters organizes some group activities during the year for all the Bigs and Littles, to foster a sense of community and of belonging to a family. Many of the Littles come from families that are disfunctional or chaotic.  Participation in Big Brothers Big Sisters helps them advance in schoolwork and improves their confidence and their abilities to interact with others. The minimum commitment for the Big is for one year. Many “matches” as they are called, last for years, well into the adulthood of the Little.  Anyone interested in mentoring, helping or donating to support this cause should contact Renee at rmoss@chd.org or at 413-259-3345.    

Your scribe,                                                                                                                                                    
Linda Honan