Spring Newsletter

Greetings, Friends and Supporters of CLiCK!

We are happy to send you our first e-newsletter! CLiCK continues to grow and we wish to sincerely thank all of you who have helped and continue to help to make this growth happen. In fact, so much is happening that we barely have time to put it into a newsletter before something else happens! Our goal is to send you regular updates so you can know exactly how your support has helped (if you were at our last fundraiser you’ll be happy to see that our accessible and family-friendly bathroom is finished, thanks to your generous support -- see pictures below) and to alert you of upcoming events. Coming up, on Saturday July 21st at 4pm my wife Tina and I will be hosting another Fundraiser in our garden in order to fix the CLiCK welcome sign. Tickets will be $25 at the door and will get you one specialty cocktail from our Tiki Bar and tasty delicacies from our kitchen members! There will be live music by Sarah Jo Burke and lots of great people -- that includes you! :-) Speaking of fundraising, our amazing manager Rachael LaPorte and I recently attended a great event for local nonprofits organized by The Liberty Bank Foundation. The keynote speaker, Vu Le, was phenomenal and everything he said resonated with us -- for example, his astute observation that even though nonprofits are working diligently to put out the fires of injustice, funders generally want to pay for programs but not for overhead. In other words, this is like saying you’ll pay for the water but not the hoses! CLiCK needs a lot of hoses and so we count on friends and supporters like you to help us continue to put out those fires! If you are interested in volunteering in any capacity (from applying to the Board to gardening) please do email us at clickwillimantic@gmail.com. Thank you again for supporting our mission and all of us who benefit from and believe in CLiCK.

—Phoebe, CLiCK Board President

A Peek At Our Cookbook
Cover art by Jane Collins, cookbook designed and produced by Victoria Chilinski

CLiCK Receives Jeffrey P. Ossen Grant!

We are excited to announce that we have been awarded funds from the Jeffrey P. Ossen Foundation to fund a new position of part-time Education Coordinator for the next three years. This position will focus on developing CLiCK’s culinary and nutrition programming, greatly increasing class offerings. We will begin interviews soon, so any individuals interested in applying should visit our website for more details. And keep your eyes out for a new schedule of classes in the fall!

A Night to Remember

We’re still reminiscing about last winter’s Big Jump fundraiser at the beautiful Bellingham auditorium atop Windham Town Hall in downtown Willimantic. The band was incredible, the excitement was palpable, and the crowd was a blast. Thank yous go out once again to all who contributed to making this event a special and successful evening. Your efforts and attendance helped us celebrate our kitchen members, build our community, and raise needed funds. If you are receiving this newsletter, chances are that you are among the many new friends we made on December 2nd, and we want to say THANK YOU for joining us at this event and for becoming a member of the CLiCK family!

Community/Comunidad Leaders Award Forum
The Windham area is full of passionate and innovative entrepreneurs, organizers, and activists, all working to build the community we want to live in. On May 10th, the GrowWindham Youth CORE organized and hosted the first annual Community/Comunidad Leaders Award Forum, celebrating local leaders who are at the forefront of change in the region. Two of CLiCK’s own Board Members took home awards that night: Doug Crane of Dragon’s Blood Elixir and Christos Provistalis of Pleasant Pizza. Congratulations to all the award recipients and to the GrowWindham Youth CORE for such a successful event!

Teaching Kitchen Renovation

Spring is in the air, and change is afoot in our Teaching Kitchen! A grant from the USDA and generous volunteer support from UConn students and community members have helped us update our Teaching Kitchen with brand new technology specifically aimed at enhancing our culinary classes. A fresh coat of paint and new wall art added the finishing touches. Check out our before and after!

Next up: Our future Education Coordinator will help us to revitalize and expand our curriculum so we can offer cooking and gardening classes for kids, families, beginners, and more. What classes do you want to see? Let us know!

Kitchen Member Updates

Our kitchen members never seem to sleep, working tirelessly to grow and develop their small businesses and create the building blocks of a local food economy. Recent highlights include Zola Cuisine moving into the shelf-stable market, Live On Calmbucha earning fans at the Coventry Farmers Market, Pomfret Chocolates expanding their line to include chocolate-covered pretzels and cookies, Healthy Farm Eatingdebuting a live cooking show on Facebook (Tuesday mornings at 9:30 am), and Dragon’s Blood Elixirmaking waves at the 2018 NYC Hot Sauce Expo. These are only a few of the remarkable food entrepreneurs who operate out of our shared-use kitchen!

 

Support CLiCK! Like local food, small businesses, and good friends? Want to help grow our local economy and food system? The generous support of our partners and donors keeps CLiCK alive. Donate here, and don’t forget to make CLiCK your chosen charity for Amazon Smile! We are always grateful for your support.

So, how are we using the money we raised?

This spring, we put the money from our fundraiser towards the goal of making our facility more accessible to all members of our community. Our first exciting upgrade is the creation of a family restroom that includes a baby-changing table, new accessible sinks, and a spacious, code-compliant toilet. Come on in, stay a while.

Waking Up Those Garden Beds

CLiCK’s community garden beds are once again open for the season! Are you interested in getting your hands dirty? Do you need community service hours? Come join us in the garden and orchard! There are tasks for all skills levels, and tools are provided. If you’re interested in volunteering, please contact Cece at gardensclick@gmail.com.

 

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