Weekly Bulletin - August 17th Meeting

Welcome
  • Rich lead pledge
  • Bob shared inspiration on how Rotary, and organizations like Rotary, can have a healing effect on all that is going on in the country right now
 
Guests
  • Cultivate Care Farm – Deb (Clinical Director) & Andrew (Executive Director)
  • Sophie from Nature Connection – thanked for our gift

Old business
  • Brewfest!  Amazing time.  Great weather, new location worked very well.
    • 2000+ attended
    • Comments from public is this is “best one”. 
    • Raises money for endowment fund.
    • Jacky expressed huge thank you to those who volunteered!
    • Approx $20,000/club (not confirmed).  We didn’t have to pay beer this year (yay!)
    • New location ended working well and would like us back for next year
    • Ray learned to drive a golf cart!
    • Restaurants liked being with the beer
    • Follow up meeting 9/6 so please email good/bad/ugly to Jacky because they want to work through everything for next year
    • Steve did a ton of pro-bono advertising, which saved money and was so appreciated
    • Mary thanked Jacky for her hard work <insert applause>
  • Mary reminded us of Rotary’s two budgets:
    • Operating: day to day
    • Larger budget is money we give away.  Focus of our work is to support others
 
Upcoming Events
  • “We are a happenin’ people!” – Mary Garcia
  • Wings & Wheels tonight needs help, especially with set up/clean up. 
    • 8/24 is our night. 
    • 8/31 all hands on deck.
  • Ari “Danger” Day – Saturday 19, 12-7p – fundraiser event is still on to celebrate Ari & help family.  Mary would like us to show this family our support. 
  • Rotary Fellowship – time for Rotarians to get together and have fun! Visit myrotary.com to see what is around.
  • Golf Fellowship at Nashawtuc Country Club (Concord) – August 23 – sponsored by Ron Bott.
    • Tee times reserved.
    • Sign up online and send Ron a check. 
    • $125/18 holes and $75/9 holes
  • Wine Fellowship – organized by Carl Gomes (September 22) @ Point Breeze in Webster.  No cost.  Mary will forward email with details.
  • Visioning – (Thursday, November 2, 5-9pm) Emma’s Café reserved.  We need you here!  It’s a way for us to think in the future; who do we want to be & how are we going to get there?  We go in with a chance to discuss what we think without an agenda.  It can only be successful if EVERYONE is there!
  • Repair Café – Ray
    • September 23 is Nashoba Valley next one
    • Right to repair electronics bill being passed through legislator – making companies open up their knowledge on how to repair products
    • Steve D’Agostino will be interviewing Ray (& others) for air on WICN. 
  • Habitat for Humanity – Golf event Sept 19 @ Shaker Hills
  • Habitat for Humanity – Wine tasting October 19 @ Devens
  • Healing Garden Walk & Ride - Sunday, October 1
    • Riders start 8am or 10am | Walkers 12
    • If you can’t participate, please help volunteer
  • Calendar of events from Mary was passed out
 
New Business
  • Rotary Foundation – Rich Garcia
    • Reminded us that we collect money to give away.  Many donations come back to our club in the form of global grants.  For example, thousands now receiving dental work in the Dominican Republic who would never have received it before.  Many give a one time gift or through monthly withdrawals or wills, 
  • Honored Jacky Foster for her $3,000
 
Happy/Sad
  • Leigh borrowed a $1 from Laura and thanked Bob for his inspiration this morning as she has been avoiding news, feeling helpless but now realizes we can make a difference
  • Laura – daughter got her own insurance (yay!), shared her weird morning about car electronics going haywire!
  • Rich’s daughter’s birthday & weird printer problem that is finally fixed. 
  • Carolyn – mid build celebration in Fitchburg went well!   Habitat received a critical home repair call and is grateful they can help
  • Ray – went to Western CT to visit father in law in a new assisted living, he is doing well.  Big family trip to Maine soon
  • Katie – found out last night she is going to be an aunt; thanked Jacky for Brewfest leadership
  • Jacky – laughed because she thought there was a meeting last week
  • Bob – happy for good weather for Bolton Fair, lots of fun seeing animals & Bridges to Malawi tent!  Granddaughter had a great time seeing EVERY animal (despite being scared of a cows loud mow).  Spending weekend taking care of her soon and looking forward to it
  • Karin – queen of rotary spirit!  Living the rotary life J
  • Ron – happy with the success of brewfest, and sad to have lost a teenager to college
  • Glen – congrats to brewfest, moms breast cancer diagnosis hasn’t spread
  • Howard – will make up for not being able to attend next weeks w&w; checked IDs at Brewfest and impressed how far people came
  • Mary – congrats to brewfest, seconded Rich’s printer working
Guest Speakers - Cultivate Care Farms (Bolton, MA)
www.cultivatecounselingcenter.com 
  • Challenges the status quo of mental health. 
  • Andrew shared his journey in clinical mental health and his frustration with hearing “we can’t do that” or “we don’t have a program for that” and “that’s not a thing”.  His research brought him googling around the globe where he landed on the Netherlands model, which is free care.  Other similar models in the country are in-patient, which is not what everyone needs.  On a leap of faith, he quit his job and started in Acton on a friends farm.
  • Deb shared her path to Cultivate Cares; background in adolescent mental health but become unhappy with how schools handle counseling and mental health; became more about grades and tests than about serving the students.
  • Cultivate Cares maintains the basic premise that everyone should have access to good, quality health care in whatever form that takes.  Cultivate Counseling Center was a for-profit and even then, sliding scale down to $5 but never free.
  • 2016 bought property in Bolton and became a non-profit Cultivate Care Farms.  After a 2 year battle with the state, proved they are doing effective mental health counseling and now are able to accept health insurance
  • Showed photos of animals who serve as therapists. 
    • About 60 animals (horses, goats, alpaca, sheep, chickens, & more). 
    • If you can combine a “throw away cast of animal with a throw away cast of human, they can heal each other.”
  • Stories of animal healing:
    • Anxious client sits with angora rabbit.  The rabbits heart will race because he/she is anxious so client can feel the rabbit becoming calmer as they sit together.  Andrew & Deb can then start to talk through what the client can do when his/her heart starts to race. 
      • It’s not just about talking, it’s an experience to demonstrate what a coping skill can do
    • Equine Therapy –the horses become part of your story which is a backdrop of your own internal metaphor; what each client experiences and takes away is personal and real. 
      • Highly effective treatment – what used to take 12+ months has now started healing clients in 6-8 months.
      • One woman said she was ready to move forward but the team knew she needed some more treatment.  Saying in an office “you’re not there yet” doesn’t go well.  Her experience with the horses (one a gorgeous horse, the other rather “funky” looking) was incredible.  Andrew was not within ear shot and just let her meet them.  At some point, the small horse started chasing the big one around & around & around when they had never had before
      • The client looked at Andrew and said “was that my fault?” to which Andrew replied, “what do you think?”
      • As tears filled her eyes, she said “that little one is my addiction still chasing me.  I look like I have it together but I can’t kick the addiction.”   As soon as she said that, the chasing stopped.  Why?
      • Horses can smell 40 times better than a dog and can read facial expressions; this story isn’t the exception it’s the rule.  There is no special training for horses, they just show up and do their job. Everyone’s response to an an interaction with the horses is different:
        • That one is like me because it’s so big but no one sees it
        • That little one is me because it’s ugly and not wanted
        • What looks like play to one might look like a fight to another.  There is not right or wrong
        • Is this really about the horse?  You’re no longer your diagnosis, you become a member of a community and welcomed by these animals.
        • When you’re on the farm, you have to stay in the moment which is hard in more traditional therapy
  • Giving back to the community. 
  • Raises funds through sponsorship, etc.  This year they are having a murder-mystery gala event.
  • In addition to individual therapy, corporate sessions with the horses & specialized events
  • Question: how many clients do you see?  20-60 in a week
  • Where do referrals come from?  All over.  Calls come from an office who will say someone just needs to try something else
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