hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA


December 23, 2009

Helping Hands: Volunteer opportunities in and around Haverhill

Volunteers needed to help children with their reading

The Merrimack Valley Jewish Coalition for Literacy is beginning its eighth year of helping local schoolchildren improve their reading skills. Volunteers are asked to spend one hour per week working one-on-one with a child and help them become a better reader. Free training will be provided. The coalition currently has 16 teams and over 100 volunteers in public, private and after school programs in Andover, Haverhill and Lawrence. The literacy coalition's newest teams are working with children ages 3-5 in Haverhill's public and private schools and are helping youngsters get a jump start in acquiring vocabulary, listening skills, increased print awareness and an appreciation for the world of books. The literacy coalition is associated with "First Books," a program that provides economically disadvantaged students with free, high quality books that are first read with volunteers, then are taken home and added to a home library.

For more information about volunteeing, please contact Sherry Comerchero 978-374-3151.

Contractors needed

This year Rebuilding Together has received more application than expected and are in need of contractors to do preliminary visits with a house selection committee member. Licensed contractors, plumber or electricians available to visit one or two applicant homes in November or December are encouraged to call the RT office at 978-469-0800 or e-mail RTogether@verizon.net.

Volunteers can provide free tax help

Community Action Inc., which serves Haverhill and other communities in the Merrimack Valley, is seeking volunteers to help low-income taxpayers prepare and E-file their state and federal tax returns. Training to become an IRS-certified volunteer can be done online with additional training to be provided by CAI. Training is scheduled for mid-December through mid-January. Tax preparation begins mid-January and extends through mid-April. Please contact Marilyn Luther at 978-373-1971, ext. 285 or Marge Hooper at 978-373-1971, ext. 227.

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