June - July 2019

Greetings Friends,

How I give thanks for each of you as we move forward in community – serving God in our community.  Not easy – but so very important.  May our common focus on mission allow us to be brothers and sisters in Christ to one another as we offer compassionate care. 

Programming Notes: 
A Baby Center was delighted to receive a $10,000 grant from the National Diaper Bank to cover startup costs for one year of service to Nantucket.  We know that the needs are great for this resource with the Island’s year-round population.  New services will begin on June 12!  We are grateful for partnerships with the Family Resource Center, WIC/Health Imperatives, Site One Landscaping and Cape Air/Nantucket Airlines.   This is an exciting next step. 

Board Notes:
We continue our work on Strategic Planning.  Our consultant, Mike Lavin, has interviewed members of the Board and staff.  He will soon begin surveying member churches, volunteers and clients.  This work will determine best ways to support and guide the vision, mission, and financial underpinnings of the Council’s ministry.  Our goal is to have a 3 – 4 year Strategic Plan for full Board approval in the late summer of 2019 that will then be presented at the 2019 Annual Assembly. 

On Fundraising Notes:
The Generations of Hope benefit surpassed all our expectations!  We had 151 attendees (our goal was 150).  We grossed over $53,000 and net almost $39,000 (our goal was to net $30,000).  We increased our net by over 30% from last year, while holding expenses at 27% of the gross (the industry standard goal is no more than 30%).  All the revenue goes to program support for the Council’s work.  The Sea View was a great venue and we are already booked to have our 2020 event there on April 4 in 2020.  Please mark your calendars!  People greatly enjoyed themselves, and were eager to support the Council’s work with generous purchases of Silent Auction items, Heads or Tails chances and Fund a Need opportunities.  Dan Wolf and Jean McCutcheon were each great in their roles as Guest of Honor and Emcee. 
All was made possible by our great volunteers.  Thank you for your help in collecting donations, soliciting Sponsors, attending and bringing guests, sharing news of the event and the Council’s work, setting and cleaning up, writing “thank you” notes, and so many other efforts, large and small.  

Our financial needs continue through the summer, so please watch for our Summer Appeal in the mail.

Your help makes possible all our year-round assistance to our neighbors in need.
Thank You. 
We make a good team.

Edye Nesmith
Executive Director

This ad appeared in The Cape Cod Times on May 12, 2019.

Council News

Hands of Hope
Hands of Hope has been helping with emergency food, rent to prevent eviction, terminated utilities, and heating oil for over 30 years. Donations are so needed and greatly appreciated: food, funds, and volunteers to help in the Food Pantry and Thrift Shop.

Please encourage your summer friends and neighbors to consider helping the local residents in need who perform many of the services that make their vacations joyful. And please make a visit to our location at 49 RT 28, West Harwich, 508-432-1312.

Cathy Driscoll
Director, Hands of Hope


Covenant to Care
Covenant to Care's Fostering a Dream Fund is helping foster families to have fun! We have purchased tickets for foster families to go to Edaville Railroad and Park, Plimouth Plantation, and are planning to obtain tickets to Water Whiz when they open in June. We have purchased 25 $100 gift cards for books at the Cape Cod Community Bookstore. We are working with the Department of Children and Families to fund summer camp for foster children.

I have been working together with Beth Albert, Director of Barnstable County Human Services Dept. and Eileen Elias, Foster Children Advocate and former Commissioner for the Department of Mental Health. In March, I attended a meeting of 25 people at the Behavioral Health Care Initiative at Cape Cod Healthcare. It was decided that interested agencies would sign up to be on a Working Group for Children’s Behavioral Health. Currently, there is a 3 month waiting period for children aged 0 to 18 to be seen by a mental health therapist. For foster children who are experiencing trauma from their biological family and then moved to foster care, that is an unacceptable delay.  

Grace and peace,
Miriam Erickson
Director, Covenant to Care


A Baby Center
Diaper Bank Is Coming to Nantucket!!
A Baby Center Nantucket satellite to open within the Nantucket Family Resource Center

A Baby Center will begin client services on the Island of Nantucket beginning June 12, 2019. A Baby Center Nantucket (ABC Nantucket) will provide diapers, wipes and some infant necessities, at no cost to income eligible (WIC) parents.

ABC Nantucket endeavors to assist young families who are in financial crisis by offering them supplemental diapers, wipes and infant care items that promote health and wellness.
The ABC Nantucket’s satellite office will be located within The Nantucket Family Resource Center, located at 1 Freedom Square Suite B, Nantucket, MA. The hours of operation for ABC Nantucket are Wednesdays from 10:30 am - 3:30 pm. Please call 508-737-5406 for an appointment to register for services. Walk-ins will be seen on a first come first serve basis within open hours. Visit our website at and look for the A Baby Center Nantucket tab.

The Nantucket Family Resource Center is one of twenty-four such centers spread across Massachusetts. As part of this statewide network, they offer evidence-based parent education programs, parent support groups, early childhood services, information and referral resources and education for Nantucket families, regardless of insurance or income.  All services are offered to families at no cost! Visit their website at   Phone: 508-815-5115  

ABC Director Robin Hayward and Program Manager Kelly Lerch
getting ready to launch ABC Nantucket next week!

A Baby Center Nantucket operates only through the generous gifts of the community. If you are interested in donating diapers, wipes, or formula or to make a dollar donation, please contact Director Robin Hayward at 508-771-8157 and mention ABC Nantucket donations.

A Baby Center is proud to partner with The Nantucket Family Resource Center, Cape Air, Site One Landscaping Supply, the National Diaper Bank Network, the United Way of the Cape and Islands, and The League Club of Cape Cod to name a few....

Thank you for your support!

Robin Hayward
Director, A Baby Center


Youth StreetReach
We will be holding our Annual Cookout at Sea Street Beach in Hyannis on Sunday, July 14th from 11:30 am - 1 pm! 

Feel free to join youth and adults from across the Cape who will be serving burgers, dogs, and assorted goodies to our homeless friends. You can bring along a dessert or salad to add to the mix or just bring yourself and a beach chair and have fun! Hope to see you there. Please click here to see the flyer.

Marilyn Lariviere
Director, Youth StreetReach


Community News


There’s an exciting program active on Cape Cod that may interest you!
Education for Ministry, better known as EfM, is a program for adult Christian Formation developed by the School of Theology at the University of the South, Sewanee, TN and sponsored locally by The Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts.

We are all, by virtue of our Baptism, called to ministry.  This course is designed to help us develop knowledge and confidence as we live into our own call to follow Christ.  The seminar provides an intensive look at the Hebrew Scriptures, the New Testament, Church History and Theology over a period of four years.  During the weekly sessions that loosely follow the academic calendar, there is opportunity for worship, discussion of the readings, and a deeper reflection on how each person can respond to the call to ministry.  Through the process we laugh and occasionally cry together as we grow in a community of love, faith and understanding.

An Efm group meets at the Church of the Holy Spirit in Orleans and will soon be involved in recruiting and registering members for September.  If you would like to learn more about EfM, please contact the mentors of the program listed below.

Is this a serious commitment? YES!
Is it worth it? DEFINITELY!
*Wilma J. Morris - (508) 432-6733 or
Nancy Barrington – (650)714-1862 or

*Wilma Morris is a member of the Cape Cod Council of Churches' Board of Directors


For all human services agency workers:
The Barnstable County Department of Health and Human Services is offering a training opportunity for engaging with Unaccompanied Homeless Youth and Young Adults (YYA) on June 11th in the Harborview Conference Room.

There will be two sessions led by Ayala Livny, a Senior Consultant for EOHHS Youth Homelessness initiatives, along with members of the Boston Youth Action Board (YAB):

  1. 9:00-12:00 Understanding the Realities of Youth Homelessness & Best Practices in Working with YYA Experiencing Homelessness
  2. 12:45-3:45 Authentic Youth Engagement and Outreach

 The afternoon training will build on the morning session, so participants would most benefit from attending both.

This is a great opportunity for staff who are working with homeless youth and young adults to learn techniques and build skills to most effectively engage and partner with this population on their path to stable housing.  The training is limited to 25 participants. Please forward this to anyone at your agency who was not included, and RSVP to by June 7th. Light lunch and refreshments will be served.

Independence House presents its second annual International Festival!
Independence House is the leading agency on Cape Cod that works on behalf of survivors of Sexual & Domestic Violence. In brief, our mission is to help all domestic violence and sexual assault victims, survivors and the children by creating opportunities to find safety and become empowered though crisis intervention, advocacy, counseling, referral, outreach, prevention, education and inspiring change in our community. 

A collaborative committee of Independence House staff from diverse cultural backgrounds is putting together the 2nd International Festival on the Hyannis Green on August 3, 2019, from 12 pm - 6 pm. More information is available here.


Alzheimer'sFamily Support Center of Cape Cod presents:
A Positive Approach to Dementia Care with Teepa Snow
Wednesday, June 26

There is so much to learn about Alzheimer's Disease. Please join us for a day of laughter and learning with Teepa Snow, a nationally renowned dementia-care education specialist. Seating is limited, so register now to save your seat. CE's are available for First Responders, Activity Directors, Social Workers, Psychologists, Nurses, Marriage and Family Therapists, and Licensed Mental Health Counselors/Licensed Professional Counselors. This conference is free and open to the public. Click here to register.


Bay to Sound Neighbors
Bay to Sound Neighbors Hits 8th Month Mark!
Bay to Sound Neighbors, an organization enabling seniors in the towns of Dennis and Yarmouth to age in place, currently has over 100 members and 89 volunteers.  We continue to seek volunteers who have a few spare hours to assist our members get to appointments, get ready for spring, or help solve minor technical issues.  Volunteers can select date and time depending upon their schedules with no fixed number of hours or specific days.  Help your neighbors and friends age in their homes.

Our virtual office hours are: Monday-Friday, 9 - 12 pm and 1 - 4 pm. Call us at 508-470-0585.


The Massachusetts Council of Churches presents:

More information is available here.

Pastors' Conference: Formation Conference
Tuesday through Friday, October 22-25, 2019

Dear fellow Pastors and leaders,

Over the years I have been committed in various capacities within established forums to facilitate unity and encouragement to pastors and leaders on the Cape. Being very familiar with the challenges facing church pastors, I have sensed the need for further encouragement for all of us. To this end, I have decided to organize, in consultation with our fellow pastor friends, a pastors-only conference as a time set aside to invigorate our ministries, with subjects directly related to and that affect pastoral ministry specifically.

Please click here to see the flyer.

Here is the website link for the expanded information:

We warmly invite you to join us for this uplifting and relationship building event.

Dr. Stephen A Russell
Director, Formation Missions


Upcoming Events

This, That You Have Done: A Tale of Eve's Redemption
Sr. Danielle Dwyer, Artistic Director of Elements Theatre Company
Church of the Transfiguration
Friday and Saturday, June 7 & 8

7:30 pm

Gathering: A National Emergency
First Congregational Church
Friday, June 7
10 am - noon

A Positive Approach to Dementia Care
Barnstable Performing Arts Center
Wednesday, June 26
8:30 am - 4:30 pm

We Can Workshops and Programs
On-Going through June and July
PathMakers Mentoring Program
GROW: for Women Business Owners

May We Forever Stand
presented by the
Massachusetts Council of Churches

Greater Framingham Community Church
Friday, Spetember 20
12:00 pm and 7:30 pm

About the Council
The Cape Cod Council of Churches serves people of all ages from Cape Cod and the Islands who are facing some of life's most difficult challenges.  We have been privileged to serve our neighbors for over 50 years, meeting people at their points of critical need and helping them move forward to greater stability.  We are able to impact the lives of over 7,500 residents each year through the Council's six different programs and the work of over 400 volunteers.  With the help of churches and our community our mission comes to life, "Serving God by Serving Others," as we offer practical assistance, spiritual support and hope - all without regard for religious affiliation.
Provides critical basic baby needs to income eligible families (WIC) for infants up to age four on Cape Cod and the Islands. The Center serves over 500 babies each month.  Families receive diapers, wipes, formula, gently-used clothing and other baby necessities.

Matches a Cape & Islands congregation with Foster Care Families, supporting those families and the foster children in their care.  This program works in partnership with the MA Dept. of Children & Families.

Provides hot, nutritious meals to our food insecure neighbors three evenings a week in Hyannis.  Volunteer congregations and community groups help to prepare and serve free meals each Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Offers emergency assistance to low-income families in the mid-Cape area (Mashpee to Harwich).  Assistance includes: food, clothing, small household goods and financial relief to prevent evictions.

Homeless Ministries Services
Offers short term emergency shelter for families and individuals facing homelessness.
Youth StreetReach
Enables teens to interact with our homeless neighbors by serving a meal and hearing firsthand how a life's path can lead to unexpected circumstances.

Sponsors Chaplains at Cape Cod Hospital and Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital who offer prayers, hope and comfort to patients and families in their time of illness and recovery.
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