Letter from the Chairs

Dear Council members:

Each season brings its own sense of ‘busy’ness, and each one, in turn, convinces
me that it is the busiest of all. This spring is no exception. So far this year (since
September) we have held or sponsored several events. The Human Rights Day
Breakfast in December featured the Biannual ‘Climate for Freedom’ Award, given
this time to PFLAG, Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, for their work in
promoting dialog, and acceptance in the community. We were hosted by the
Trinitarian Congregational Church on Walden St, with Reverend John Lombard
welcoming the crowd on a cold December Monday morning.

In January, the Annual Martin Luther King Celebration was held in the Sanborn
Auditorium, with the Boston Children’s Choir, and the Willard School Fifth Grade
Chorus, performing both separately, and then together. Coming as it did just a few
days before the Presidential Inauguration, it was an evening that felt immensely significant
and poignant. Thanks go to Charlyn Bethel, Director of the Willard Chorus,
and to Michelle Adams, Director of the Boston Children’s Choir.

The Human Rights Council has co-sponsored and supported three recent events:
the Homelessness Forum; the presentation at Kerem Shalom, ‘Combatants for
Peace’; and the Communities for Restorative Justice event featuring Howard Zehr,
who is a noted author, photographer and the ‘grandfather’ of the Restorative Justice
movement. All of these activities exemplify the Council’s watchwords –‘the climate
of the community is the responsibility of the community.’ In keeping that phrase in
the forefront of our minds as we go about our daily lives, we hope that we can
indeed foster a climate of freedom here in Concord and Carlisle, and hope that it
can spread further into the wider world community.

The Drinking Gourd Project (establishment of a Black Heritage and Abolitionist
Tour in Concord) is gathering momentum (see inside for more details). We are also
facilitating the establishment of a METCO Scholarship Fund, which will be kicking
off with its initial fundraiser on April 17th – again, see inside for more details.
The 29th Annual Concord Holocaust Memorial Observance will be hosted by
the Board of Selectmen on Sunday, April 26th, 7:30 pm at the Town House. All are
welcome to this event, which promises to be a very powerful evening. Rosalie Gerut
and Martina Emme will be the speakers – they are founders of the organization,
‘One by One.’

So, yes, it’s a busy season. Thank you all for your support of our work, past and
future. We couldn’t do it without your help and goodwill.

Polly Attwood & Molly Carocci
Concord-Carlisle Human Rights Council Co-chairs

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