The Providence Village Newsletter: October 2018
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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.
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Election Interference...
What Can You Do?
Engage and Vote

Story Liz Palter, Photos by Jane Adler
(l-r) Dr. H. Phillip West, Dr. James M. Ludes, RI Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea

Our topic brought out a large crowd on a busy Sunday afternoon, September 23. More than 70 members of the Providence Village and newcomers attended the Social Events Committee’s program on “Election Interference, Accountability and Cyber Security” at the First Unitarian Meeting House in Providence.

Jim Maxwell, Village President, introduced the event. The three speakers were: RI Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea, Dr. James M. Ludes, Salve Regina’s Vice President for Public Research and Initiatives, and Dr. H. Philip West who served as Director of RI’s Common Cause for 18 years.

Grounding us in the situation that Americans currently face, Dr. Ludes’ presented a video and discussion framed as “Truth/Lies,” a presentation that drew upon the findings of a 2017 conference convened to understand Russian influence and how it is shaped to undermine democratic politics and social policies. He pointed out that in the past few decades our society has shifted (noticeably or not) from Cold War to Political Warfare. “War” has a different connotation now, a “softer” side, if not still warring. Because Russians do not have lots of technology or the manpower for regular warfare, they have developed a new playbook using information tools and the information network to conduct a new style of political warfare. What the Russians have been doing, Dr. Ludes underscored, is “exploiting issues rather than creating new issues.” He documented how they have done this on such issues as AIDS, race, and immigration. Using social media, their purpose is to weaken us and cause confusion and chaos.

Secretary of State Gorbea picked up the discussion from there. She has become a national leader on cyber security among Secretaries of State and is in regular communication with Homeland Security and others in the field.
She pointed out that cyber security is a recent problem, requires continuous attention, and demands a paradigm shift in the way we treat information and data. Since there are three levels of players in the state electoral system (in addition to the Secretary of State, the state board of elections and the local boards of elections), there are numerous problems to be addressed and coordinated.

Nellie Gorbea has tackled lots of them since being elected, including moving RI to a secure paper ballot system with scanning machines, early voting, and provisional ballots. She has sought to increase turnout through the Office’s website and outreach to schools and communities. Also, you may have discovered new electronic poll books if you voted earlier this month. Turnout of voters at primaries is typically low, but even at general elections voting turnout is not as high as in many other liberal democracies. That is a major concern. Voters need to follow the issues, become informed, and engage in conversations with family and friends, and most of all she says “Please vote.”

Phil West underscored how our Constitutional principles are now at risk because of election interference, saying, “Russia is trying to interfere with our system of hope and understanding and undermine our trust in democracy.” Our Founders had a dark view of human nature, he said, so they developed a democratic governmental system of checks and balances and separation of powers. These have now been challenged.

Many people are discontent as a result of the 2008 recession. Many are confused and unclear as to what to do for other reasons. The information network now makes it possible to manipulate public opinion. This may help to explain what is going on. Since 1940, only in the 2016 Presidential election was the winner of the popular vote not also the winner of the electoral vote, (although a hitch in 2000 with “hanging chads” leaves questions about that election). There are many ways the voting results have been distorted, including the fact that Russian hackers sought to get voters to vote against Hillary Clinton. Now, under the current Administration in Washington, many professionals have been forced from their careers, and there have been efforts at scapegoating, and attacks on health, women, journalists, as well as other branches of government. Phil West emphasized that the 2018 General Election this coming November “will test”– the vision of the Framers of our U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.

After a short Q and A, our panel presentation concluded with a vociferous call for all to become engaged in political discourse, stay engaged, run for office, and at the very least VOTE.

This event was sponsored by the PV Social Events Committee – Ada Winsten, Chair, with members Liz Palter, Joan Halpert, Anna Cerutti, Barbara Forman, Penny Faich, and Terry Percelay.

Many Thanks to
Kathleen Harrington

Story by
Diane Strommer

Kathleen Harrington with Jim Maxwell and Ed Harrington
In September 2016, the Providence Village hired Kathleen Harrington to inaugurate the position of Member Services Coordinator. She was the first professional staff member at the Village. She rapidly developed a deep appreciation for and commitment to the mission of the Village. Her enthusiasm informed her work with volunteers, collaborators, and members, as the Providence Village grew in its second and third years. Deciding to pursue new ventures, Harrington recently resigned. 

To enable a smooth transition while a search is conducted for a replacement, the Board President and members and volunteer leaders have assumed the various duties of the position. The position will soon be advertised, and the Board President, Jim Maxwell, hopes that it will be filled in November.

On Thursday, Sept. 27, a group of Village members and volunteers gathered at Hamilton House to say goodbye to Kathleen and wish her well.  After time for wine, cheese, and socializing, Jim Maxwell gathered everyone together for some words of appreciation. He spoke about how valuable Kathleen has been to the development of the Village, particularly our volunteer recruitment and training program. In addition, she has done so many other things for the Village which have helped with the smooth functioning of the office and our programs. Jim Maxwell gave Kathleen a gift on behalf of the Providence Village Board.

The Providence Village is extremely grateful to Harrington for her two years of service, and we wish her well in her new ventures.
Volunteer Spotlight:
Marlene Yang

Story by Vivian Malloy
Marlene Yang, one of the Village’s corps of 30 volunteer drivers, is fairly new to Rhode Island. Thanks to meeting a Village member soon after moving to Providence, however, Marlene became involved with the Village, joining as a volunteer in September, 2017. “I was drawn,” she said, “to the idea of helping people maintain their independence as they age. I felt what I could contribute was a fairly small thing, but that it could add up to a big difference in the quality of life for someone else.” We discussed the crucial importance of being able to get out of your own house or apartment—both psychologically and practically speaking—something I heartily endorsed, due to a recent stint of extended caretaking.

Marlene noted that “government funding ebbs and flows,” and therefore it’s important to fill in the gaps, individuals helping one another as much as possible. “We all have talents to share,” and this kind of cooperation is “what community means at its best.” Typically Marlene drives a couple of times a week, and very much enjoys getting to know her repeat riders. As of recent months, she also sits on the Membership Committee. She does other volunteer work as well, mentoring recent immigrants from the Congo through the Women’s Refugee Care. She mentors a family that includes four grade school children, helping the children achieve their educational goals. Formerly the president of a school board in Kohler, Wisconsin, Marlene remains deeply committed to fostering strong public education.

In the past, Marlene has been strongly engaged in the arts. She was a docent at the John Michael Kohler Art Center for ten years, as well as a member of their Board, and for a term, interim Development Director. Her husband Stu works for Hasbro Toy Company, and they have two daughters, one still at home and one who lives in NYC. We look forward to Marlene’s input on the Membership Committee, and thank her for all the good work she does for the Providence Village.

PV Board Report - September
Story & Photos by Phil West
Treasurer Gary Leib reported that expenditures to date are $6,185 under budget and income is $19,811 above budget. The surplus comes partly from a generous bequest by historian Sally Marks, who died in January.
Secretary and Fundraising Committee co-chair Anne Connor asked for “movers and shakers who care about their aging neighbors” to join their committee.
Deborah Dunning, who co-chairs both the Fundraising Committee and the Advisory Council, thanked Flatbread Company and all who participated in the July fundraiser.
Laura Young told how a dozen of her Barrington neighbors are working with the town manager and a high school student to survey the needs of elders. They are discussing the possibility of creating a village and are asking for support from the Providence Village. 
Suzanne Francis, who is president-elect and chairs the Planning Group asked the Board to support the Barrington effort, which fits our plans for a Village Common to help organize neighboring communities.
Lenore Bunting and Tony Allen listen closely. Laura abstained, while the rest of the board affirmed the work and voted unanimously to help.
Pat Mattingly (center), our past president and a retired physician, told how volunteer Sue Belles skillfully assists members in examining their homes and removing obstacles that could cause them to fall. The Providence Village health and wellness program focuses on averting medical crises with help from friends and support teams. The team, which includes geriatric experts, helps members work through complex topics including insurance, chronic diseases, and in-home care versus assisted living. Board President Jim Maxwell chairs the meeting, and Secretary Anne Connor takes notes.
October Workshop
on LGBT Elders

Friday, October 5   
8:15 - noon
One Rhodes Place, Cranston, RI
The workshop will showcase the critically acclaimed documentary Gen Silent by the award winning producer and director Stu Maddox. It focuses on the lives of six LGBT elders living in nearby Massachusetts, offering a powerful portrait of the struggles they face in later life.
To register online go to:
and go to the CE Program tab.
Member Group Activities
Story & Photos by Jane Adler

Join us for Member Group Activities, a wonderful way to have a great time and meet new, friendly people. Just a very few of the things we do include visiting museums, attending lectures, going out for lunch, attending book club, and meeting for breakfast. Many more things are planned for this fall so stay tuned! Many of our events fill up quickly, so please register as soon as you can.
Invite a Friend
Friends interested in learning more about the Village are welcome to join Member Activities; please contact Jane Adler in advance.
Please join us at our next Member Activity. We have a lot of fun and it's a great opportunity to meet others who want to meet you, too. Some new faces join in at events each month.
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.

Member 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.

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



The Providence Village invites applications for the part-time position of Village Coordinator.
For full information on the position and how to apply please see the

position description.

Member Group
Join us!
  • Breakfast Club
    Thurs Oct 4   10 am
    Join us for breakfast and interesting current events discussion at the Butcher Shop on Elmgrove. Coffee or full breakfast. Dutch treat.

  • Artist Talk - Jane Adler
    Thurs Oct 11   2 pm
    Please join us at Hamilton House for a view of Jane Adler's photographs and listen to a short artist talk. Free.

  • Lunch at the Art Club
    Fri Oct 12, 12:30pm
    Come and see why everyone enjoys  this time together. Very reasonable prices. Dutch treat. Beautiful location on Thomas Street. 

  • Brown Bag Lunch Lecture
    Tues Oct 16, 12pm
    Join John Marion, Executive Director, Common Cause Rhode Island to hear "All about Gerrymandering and Democracy." Bring your lunch and we will sit together at a PV table. Free.

  • John Brown House Tour
    Sat Oct 20, 2pm
    Everyone who has taken this guided tour recommends it. Register by noon, Friday Oct 12. $8  Please Note: No elevator to the second floor, possible car pooling. 

  • Dinner Club
    Sun Oct 21  5pm
    We are going to The Old Grist Mill Tavern in Seekonk, Mass. American food with salad bar. This restaurant has had a good reputation for many years. It's been in business since 1745 and is "touted by locals as the preeminent New England tavern featuring everything from steaks and chops to seafood." Dutch treat. Registration closes Oct 19, 12pm. This fills up fast. Please check their menu on line.

  • Book Club
    Tues Oct 23, 3:30pm
    We are reading For Whom the Bell Tolls, by Hemingway. One of our members selected this book because Hemingway was quoted often at McCain's funeral. Free with simple snacks to share.

  • Walking Tour - Wayland
    Wed Oct 24  2pm
    Walk Wayland Square with our private tour guide. The walking is easy, a 20th century residential neighborhood, named the Wayland Historic District in 2006. See churches, elegant residences, apartment blocks, and a successful retail block. Free. Coffee and dessert, optional. Dutch treat.

  • Potluck & Chat
    Fri Nov 2, 1pm
    Join us for a potluck lunch and a sit-around-the-table lecture about How our Streets got their Names. Private home. Free with dish to share.
All events are subject to rescheduling. Must register for all events. Check email invitations for details, reply to Jane Adler and please leave your phone number:

* For weekend and evening activities, members may need to provide their own transportation or carpooling.

IMPORTANT: To assure that I received your email registration for any activity, make sure you receive a "thank you" email from me.
Social Events
Seeks New Members!
This committee plans the annual Colt State Park picnic and other events. Would you like to help? You need not be a member of the Providence Village to join the committee.
If you are interested, please contact:
Ada Winsten - 274-4717
or email
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
Jay Glasson
Beverly Ledbetter
Lynette Lopes
Marcus Mitchell
Herbert Rakatansky
Dan Siegel
Barbara Sokoloff
Bill Twaddell
Phil West
New Board Member
of the Month
Terry Percelay
Terry Percelay has had wide experience creating custom promotional premium products for major national brands. As project manager for work in progress, she supervised production contractors and suppliers, including graphic, product and packaging designers. Her prior experience was in copywriting, publicity, and account management at New York advertising agencies. In addition to volunteering with the Providence Village, Terry is developing Finysh Line jewelry products which inspire, motivate, and encourage. Volunteering with the Providence Village, Terry assists in implementing special projects, and she serves on the Social Events Committee.
Learn more about our new offerings
Call our service coordinators

Merchant Discounts

Village Members

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.

Business Discounts
for Village Members & Volunteers
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

Rhody Craft
769 Hope St

Evolve Apothecary & Spa
769A Hope St

Henry Bear's Park
736 Hope St

Stock Culinary
756 Hope St

Support our
Participating Businesses!
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. 

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
The Providence Village

Our Mission
The mission of the Providence Village is to create a community of mutual support, so that we can live rich, full lives in our homes and neighborhoods.

Our Vision
The Providence Village will provide a single source of access to programs and services that support a healthy, safe and satisfying life for our members.

Our Core Values
Generosity, Diversity, Engagement, Collaboration, Sustainability

Newsletter Staff:   Editor:  Wendy Oliver    
Writers:  Jane Adler, Vivian Malloy, Wendy Oliver, Diane Strommer, Phil West   
Photography:  Phil West, Jane Adler
Obituary Assistance:  Ann Connor, Amy Webb, Phil West
Design:  Amy Webb - Mockingbird Design

visit our website:

email:          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


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Providence Village RI · 276 Angell Street · Providence, RI 02906 · USA

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