The Providence Village Newsletter: August 2019
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What is The Providence Village? A grassroots, community-based, non-profit network of mutual support for those of us who want to stay in our homes and neighborhoods as we grow older.
We are inspired by neighbors helping neighbors
We are committed to an inclusive, community-based network of mutual support
We call our endeavor The Providence Village
Villagio Event Raises Dough

By Wendy Oliver
Photos by Jane Adler

On July 15 from 5-9 PM, many members, volunteers, and friends of the Providence Village gathered at Flatbread Pizza for the Second Annual Fundraiser. Attendees dined on pizzas and salad, accompanied by craft beers and cocktails.  Everyone had the opportunity to buy raffle tickets for some outstanding prizes, including a jewelry store gift certificate, and several gift certificates for restaurants, including CAV and Three Sisters.

There was also a silent auction, which offered prizes including memberships to the JCC, YMCA, and the Athenaeum. The Master of Ceremonies role for the raffle was ably played by Peter Viner-Brown, who kept us laughing with his running commentary on the process. His assistant was Madeleine Murphy, age 12, Suzanne and David Francis’ granddaughter, who drew the winning lottery tickets from a large, silver bowl.

Villagio was a great opportunity to mingle with friends and meet new Villagers, all for a good cause!

Diane Goldman
It is with a heavy heart that the Board of Directors share the sad news of the passing of its member and extraordinary volunteer, Diane Goldman. Diane was hospitalized last week after a fall and died at Philip Hulitar Hospice surrounded by family. Her funeral service was Thursday, July 25, at 458 Hope Street, Providence; she was buried at Swan Point Cemetery.

Diane grew up in Brooklyn, NY, where she met her husband of 47 years, Claude, and received a Bachelor's of Science in Biology from Stonybrook University. Diane, Claude, and their two children settled in Providence in RI, where she lived for 45 years. After spending a number of years as a Biochemist at Brown University, Diane received a Nursing degree from the University of Rhode Island. As a visiting hospice nurse, Diane was able to put her passion for helping people into practice for over 25 years. Diane was a devoted volunteer for the Providence Village and other area organizations.

Growing Older, Learning Spanish
By Diane Strommer
Some might say I’m “loco.”  But, here I am, grown older and growing older yet, and I have an indisputable new passion: to learn Spanish. Really learn it: read, write, speak, understand—all of it.  To take the time to do it; to make space in my days for it. I have thought that of other languages when I found myself in distant lands: Arabic, Vietnamese, French, German, Bulgarian, Japanese.  I’d learn forty words or so and that would be that. I could buy ground hamburger in Bulgaria by mooing to the butcher; I could eat well in restaurants by pointing to another diner’s food. I got by, thanks to kind people, translators, and grateful smiles.
But then after several visits to Mexico, I really wanted to learn Spanish. One fact seldom disputed is that the brain is hard-wired for language learning when one is an infant. Baby noises are transformed into whatever language the parents’ speak, the “mother tongue,” early on. 

The corollary is that the older you are, the harder it is to learn a language-- not impossible, but hard.  The happier research also indicates that learning a new language (or trying to) helps the brain to make new connections, staving off forgetfulness, even dementia. It sharpens the brain.
Whatever the research, this is something I wanted to do. I underestimated the difficulty and the time needed, certainly; I also underestimated the pleasure. I have taken courses here under a marvelous teacher at Rochambeau Library and in Mexico under the kind tutelage of a man I persuaded to continue our lessons via Skype when I came home.  Neither of us had done anything like this before, and it remains a weekly pleasure.
Our conversations are not without misunderstanding.  I thought my “maestro” (teacher) was going to Germany to see his daughter dance. Not illogical; she is a ballerina. But actually, as I learned when he returned, he and his wife went because she was getting married. I had misunderstood. Our “conversations” are painful– or would be to anyone listening who knows Spanish. He fills in more blanks than I use correct verbs. But our chats now go on for twenty and more minutes. He understands me.  He gently corrects me, “If you want to use correct grammar,” he says in Spanish, and I listen to his repeat of my thought.
And poco a poco– little by little– and with a great deal of “practica,” I sense progress.  I may not live long enough to be fluent, but then again, I may.
The Providence Village Needs You!
Want to make a BIG difference without leaving your house?
Volunteer to join the Service Coordinator Team!  
These wonderful folks are the lifeline of the Village, answering members' phone calls and scheduling transportation, household help and other services.  You can schedule your volunteer shifts according to YOUR weekly schedule. Currently, we have fewer Service Coordinators than we need, and would love some new people to join us.  Service Coordinator Qualifications: be a caring individual with some computer experience (emailing, etc.) Volunteers will receive training.  If interested call Eliza at 228-8683 or
Spreading the Word about the Providence Village
On July 13, the Providence Village had a table at the Farme’rs Market at Lippitt Park. The purpose was to let people know who we are and allow people to sign up to be on our mailing list. It was an enjoyable time; we got to meet people in the community and consider the day, successful. Our next Farmer’s Market will be on August 10th. Please stop by to see us.
Gathering to Discuss
RI Village Commons
& Neighborhood Circles

PV President Jim Maxwell takes a question from those assembled to hear about creation of the Village Common.

Members of the PV Board recently led two meetings designed to explain the Village Commons concept to members, volunteers, and friends. The Village Commons is an umbrella organization which will allow multiple villages within RI to form and thrive. The first meeting was held at the Rochambeau Library on July 20, and the second at Hamilton House on July 30. In addition to discussing the Village Commons concept, Board members described the two Neighborhood Circles that are currently up and running within the Providence Village. These neighborhood-based groups meet for potlucks, discussions, and other activities. In addition to the presentations, those who attended had the opportunity to talk in smaller groups and learn from those who were already involved in Neighborhood Circles.

Clare Kirby offers an idea for neighborhood circles.
Cooling Center During Hot Weather
Fellow Villagers: When there is extreme heat and/or humidity in the near forecast, here is the link to check where there are cooling centers open to the public for those who need to seek shelter from extreme heat:
If you need additional assistance call 2-1-1.  IF you feel your health is being affected by the extreme heat, do not hesitate to call 9-1-1.
Meals on Wheels 
For Seniors over 60
Do you have an injury, an illness, or are a caregiver who doesn’t have time to cook nutritious meals? Try Meals on Wheels of RI! Meals on Wheels provides daily nutritious meals, safety checks and socialization for seniors and other homebound adults across Rhode Island. 
 There is no financial eligibility requirement or client cost for this program. A $3.00 donation per meal is suggested. Individuals must be at least 60 years old. 
Call 401-351-6700 for more information.

Meals on Wheels of RI also has Volunteer Opportunities! For more information on volunteering, call (401) 351-6700.
Explore Options to Live Better Longer
By Diane Strommer
Thursday, September 19 from 2:00-3:30pm
Central Congregational Church


Explore the Providence Circle of Longevity Explorers. A collaborative program between the Providence Village and Hamilton House, Longevity Explorers meet monthly to examine the unmet needs of aging—in products, services, and information—and to learn more about what meets (or might meet) our needs. Some of the subjects explored since the program began are:

  • avoiding loneliness and social isolation,
  • useful tools and gadgets,
  • driving safely and longer,
  • understanding options for living arrangements,
  • preventing falls,
  • communicating and assuring health care wishes, and
  • useful technology.

Meetings often include information from an expert—an update on research on Alzheimer’s disease, for example, or a physical therapist with strategies for preventing falls. They always include lively discussions and useful exchanges.

The Providence Longevity Explorers are one of a group of “circles” around the country, part of an initiative and on-line presence called “Tech Enhanced Life.” The recordings and a summary of each of our meetings—and that of each of the Circles—is on the web. You can go directly to the information from our group at

Anyone interested in lively, interesting, and respectful exchanges with one’s peers is welcome to join the circle. Meetings are on the third Thursdays of the month, beginning in September. That is, September 19 from 2:00-3:30 in the Fireplace Room of the Central Congregational Church (next door to Hamilton House on Angell Street). You have an opportunity at that meeting to help to shape the agenda for the other fall and spring meetings. The new year also promises opportunities to participate in research and trials for new technology. 

PV Group Activities
By Jane Adler
On one of our many bus trips, we visited the John F. Kennedy Presidential library and Museum in Boston. (The bus trip was free; they only charge was for admission.)The building itself is spectacular--just to see that is worthwhile!  The first thing planned when we entered the museum was to sit in the auditorium and watch a movie about John F Kennedy’s life. This helped to set things up for all of the exhibits that we saw.  The exhibits ranged from memorabilia of that time, to pictures of state dinners, to exhibits of the US trip to the moon. We all had a great time and look forward to more of our trips together.
See below for another month of events to check out and enjoy.  Join us for a special outing to the Newport Playhouse and Cabaret Restaurant on August 14th. Or join us for a cool afternoon at the movies on August 8th, or share a book, lunch or dinner. Enjoy an opportunity to meet new friends and check in with our friendly crew of regulars. Please join us!
Group Activities

August 2019
Join us!
Please register for all events
Thursday, August 8, Afternoon TBA
Movie Day

Come with us to the Avon. We will let you know what's playing when they announce it. Dutch treat.
Register by Tuesday, August 6

Monday, August 12, 3:30pm
Book Club

This month we will be discussing Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson. Private home. Free.

Wednesday, August 14, 5pm
Newport Playhouse & Cabaret Restaurant

This is something special. Arrive hungry and enjoy a buffet at 11:30am, and when you finish your meal, attend a play, "Funny Money," written by Ray Cooney, and then attend a Cabaret. $52.95 per person includes everything plus a free bus ride to Newport. (Gratuity on bar service only.) Check it out online.
Please register early for this to make sure you have a seat - and must pay at registration. Let's treat ourselves. It's a good price for what we will be experiencing.
Register by Tuesday, August 6

Friday August 23, 12:15pm
Lunch Bunch

Lunch at the Providence Art Club on Thomas Street. Very reasonable prices. We welcome new people. Very friendly group. Dutch treat.
Register by Monday, August 20
Sunday, August 25, 5pm

Fabulous Dinner Club

Our fabulous Dinner Club. We are going to Yama Fuji, 1190 N. Main Street, Providence. This reasonably priced restaurant features an extensive menu of Chinese,Japanese and Thai dishes plus a sushi bar. Check the menu on the website. Register by noon, Wednesday, August 21.Dutch treat.   (Providence Village transportation is not available on Sunday. We will try to car pool.)
Register by noon, Wednesday, August 21
Invite a Friend
Friends interested in learning more about the Village are welcome to join Member Activities; please contact Jane Adler in advance.
A Note From Jane:
If you’d like to go to any of these activities, please register promptly to avoid being put on a wait list. Also, some of us have waited until the last minute to register and discover something we wanted to attend has been cancelled because of a lack of response.
Please register as soon as possible so we know how many are coming, and please let us know if you will not be attending after you do register to make room for another person. Thank you.  
All events are subject to rescheduling. Must register for all events.  
Please r
eply to: 
Providence Village Services

Learn More About Our Offerings
Call our Service Coordinator - Eliza Sutton
Ways to Volunteer!
The Providence Village needs you!

There are many opportunities to volunteer. Training is provided for each job, and the schedule is under your control. Here are the job descriptions:
Home Help:  Household Chores and Handy Help

Village Friends:  Provide regular check-in calls, longer friendly phone calls, or in-person visits to members.

Social Group Activities:  Help plan and assist small group social, cultural and educational activities.

Technical Support:  Assist members with computers, phones, TV remotes, i-pads, and other devices. 

Driver: Take members to and from doctors’ appointments, shopping, and errands. The schedule is flexible.

Service Coordinator:  Take phone calls from members to coordinate services for them. This can be done from your home. 

To volunteer, please call us at 401-441-5240.
Please help us cover the PV news and keep our readers informed!
Write an assigned article on a monthly or occasional basis, and contribute your own ideas to the mix. 
For more details, please contact Wendy Oliver, Editor:
Amazon Smile Program
The Providence Village now belongs to the Amazon Smile program. This program donates a small percentage of sales to various charitable organizations. Shop at and a percentage will go back to the Providence Village. See link for further information. 
Link for INFO

Merchant Discounts
Village Members & Volunteers

All Providence Village members are eligible for merchant discounts from restaurants and stores on the East Side of Providence. Please show your member card in order to receive the discount.  Participating merchants are listed below. If you take advantage of the discount, please let the merchant know that we appreciate their support!  Thank you.

With Your Village ID Card
You Get 10% Discounts at the following locations
click on name for website details

268 Thayer St
Kabob & Curry
261 Thayer St
Meeting Street Café
220 Meeting St.
Pasta Beach Restaurant
195 Wayland Ave
727 East Ave
Venda Ravioli Grocery & Restaurant
265 Atwells Ave

D’Ambra Sunoco
438 Hope St
(Discount on auto servicing and tires)
East Side Shell
1100 Hope St
(Discount on auto servicing and tires)
(Can be added to a AAA discount for greater savings)

Palomino Gifts
247 Rochambeau Ave 
Evolve Apothecary & Spa
769A Hope St
Henry Bear's Park
736 Hope St
Stock Culinary
756 Hope St
Support our
Participating Businesses!

Age Friendly RI
Check out the website for Age Friendly RI.They have lots of very helpful information about us “older adults” in RI.
click here
Providence Village
Board of Directors 
Jim Maxwell, President
Suzanne Francis, President Elect
Pat Mattingly, Past President
Anne Connor, Secretary
Gary Leib, Treasurer

Jane Adler, Tony Allen, Lenore Bunting, Deborah Dunning
Joe Fisler, Bonnie Ryvicker, Terry Percelay, Peter Viner-Brown
Phil West, Laura Young

Providence Village
Advisory Council

Deborah Dunning, Barry Fain, Patricia Gifford, Jay Glasson
Beverly Ledbetter, Lynette Lopes, Marcus Mitchell, Herbert Rakatansky
Corinne Calise Russo, Dan Siegel, Barbara Sokoloff, Bill Twaddell, Phil West
Newsletter Staff:  Editor: Wendy Oliver    
Writers:  Jane Adler, Rosalind Ladd, Vivian Malloy, Wendy Oliver,
Diane Strommer, Eliza Sutton, Phil West 
Photography:  Phil West, Jane Adler
Obituary Assistance:  Anne Connor, Amy Webb, Phil West
Design:  Amy Webb - Mockingbird Design

visit our website: 

phone: 401-441-5240

We welcome your tax-deductible donations
Please make your checks payable to The Providence Village.
The Providence Village is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

Our mailing address is: 276 Angell St. Providence RI 02906 

For more information on the Village Movement, visit the Village to Village Network:
Copyright © 2016  The Providence Village   All rights reserved.
The Providence Village Newsletter
Copyright © 2019 Providence Village RI, All rights reserved.

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