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Cushing Academy Collaborates with Heywood Healthcare to Fight Children’s Food Insecurity on Tony Fisher Day of Service

April 19, 2018

On Tuesday, April 10th, 11 students and three faculty members from Cushing Academy joined Heywood Healthcare’s Weekend Backpack Program Coordinator and Physician Recruiter, Theresa Thompson, to assist in the restocking and assembling of over 250 backpacks that go home weekly.

The group began their day at Hannaford Supermarket in Gardner at 9:30 am where 720 boxes (60 cases) of cereal and 360 (30 cases) of Pasta Sauce were loaded into a Heywood van. They then traveled to Athol to the Athol/Royalston Elementary School where they unloaded half the products. From there, they traveled to Gardner to Elm St. School where they unloaded the remainder of the food.

The group then organized 16 classroom totes, formed work stations and proceeded to fill over 250 backpacks.

When finished, everyone traveled back to Heywood Hospital where the students and faculty were treated to lunch and reflected on the day.

On Cushing Academy's Tony Fisher Day of Service to Others, instead of heading to class, students and faculty work in small groups on a variety of volunteer projects as a way to give back to others. This year’s projects included Heywood Hospital's Backpack program, Oxbow Wildlife Sanctuary, Greater Boston Food Bank, The Salvation Army, Walden Pond, Steven's Memorial Library, Forbush Memorial Library, Tully Lake, The Community Harvest Project, Otter River State Forest, Bickford & Marden Little League Fields, Ashburnham Fire/Police Department, on-campus locations, and local parks and churches. This day is held in honor of M. Anthony Fisher ’69, a well-known businessman and philanthropist, who was tragically killed in a plane crash while traveling to Cushing in 2003.

Photo Caption: During the school's Tony Fisher Day of Giving to Others, students from Ashburnham's Cushing Academy collaborated with Heywood Healthcare to combat childhood food insecurity by shopping for food and filling 250 backpacks for the Weekend Backpack Food Program.


About Athol Hospital
A member of the Heywood Healthcare system, Athol Hospital is a 25-bed non-profit, acute care and outpatient facility serving the communities of the North Quabbin region of Massachusetts. Athol Hospital’s services include 24/7 Emergency Care, Surgical Services, Oncology, Respiratory Therapy, Radiology and Laboratory, Diabetes Center and the Center for Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation. It is designated as a Critical Access Hospital and Primary Stroke Center, licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and accredited by the Joint Commission.

About Heywood Hospital
A member of the Heywood Healthcare system, Heywood Hospital is a 134-bed acute care hospital in Gardner, MA, providing a broad range of high quality medical, surgical, obstetrical, pediatric and behavioral health services on an inpatient and outpatient basis. The hospital’s Centers of Excellence include the Watkins Center for Emergency and Acute Care; the LaChance Maternity Center; the Diabetes Center and the Heywood Heart and Vascular Center, an affiliate of the Heart and Vascular Center at UMass Memorial Health Care.

About Heywood Healthcare
Heywood Healthcare is an independent, community-owned healthcare system serving north central Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire. It is comprised of Heywood Hospital, a non-profit, 134-bed acute-care hospital in Gardner, MA; Athol Hospital, a 25-bed not-for-profit, Critical Access Hospital in Athol, MA; the Quabbin Retreat, a substance misuse treatment facility, in Petersham, MA; and Heywood Medical Group with primary care physicians and specialists located throughout the region. The organization includes five satellite facilities in MA; Heywood Rehabilitation Center and Heywood Urgent Care in Gardner; West River Health Center in Orange; Winchendon Health Center and Murdock School-based Health Center in Winchendon; Heywood Charitable Foundation; and the North Quabbin Community Coalition.