Tag Archives: community

Carson Employee on front page of Business Section!

B2B ID Wendy Lane Wright, Gazette - Business Page

Daily Hampshire Gazette
B2B ID: Wendy Lane Wright
(Published in print: Monday, July 7, 2014)

 How many on your staff: 400


What you do: I cultivate relationships with our supporters and donors as well as raise funds that enable our agency’s mission to serve and improve the lives of 7,000 people each year.


I’ve also supported the mission of our agency as a human resource professional, inspiring, coaching and training staff in the programs that strengthen individuals, families and our community.


Experience: A native Berkshires girl, I connected with nonprofits when I lost my parents at an early age, attending the local YMCA, which stabilized my life and made me smile when my life got rough, giving me a passion for charitable work.  Early in my career as a wife and mother of three small children, I worked on finding a sustainable way to put food on our skinny table. To make a better life for my family, I became a community volunteer.

 My passion for leadership started when I became an award-winning speaker and community leader as an Extension Specialist at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. This work fostered a deep desire to help underserved members in my community make positive changes in their lives. So, I decided to attend college, receiving my bachelor’s degree in governmental studies from Smith College with a focus in behavioral psychology, community organization and change.


This experience changed my life for the better, and as a life long learner, I have spent the last 24 years in various nonprofit and volunteer capacities sharing that transformational experience with others.

The Market: Carson provides mental health and rehabilitation services. Today, mental illness afflicts one in four adults and one in ten children.


How you reach out to it:  Traditional media, radio, publications, email marketing, presentations and social media. I raise visibility by creating a wider network of support in the Greater Springfield area and beyond through community outreach and collaborative partnerships.


What financing hurdles have you faced and how have you handled them?  Carson is primarily funded by state contracts, Medicaid, Medicare and private insurance. These sources don’t cover the full cost of services, so I seek funding from foundations, businesses, community supporters and annual fundraisers.


Key to success:  I care about people and use my skills and professional abilities to improve their lives.


Challenges:  Carson went from serving 4,500 people a couple years ago to serving 7,000 each year, in 40 communities, from Pittsfield to Ware.


Misstep you learned from:  The first federal grant I worked on was initially declined, so I quickly learned to forge successful funder relationships to successfully get that grant.


What others could learn from you:  How to inspire groups with a call to action and to make positive change.


Who helped mentor you professionally?  Ella Hewins, a former colleague at Old Colony Envelope, is a humble lady who cared for her family during the Great Depression, and now in the era of an ever changing service industry, shared, “show up every day, do your best, and make it happen.” Today her words still inspire me.


Top goals for 2014:  I have a deep desire to leave my community more stable, one where my neighbors flourish and grow, by doing everything in my power to provide access to the resources and education that they need to accomplish this.


Advice for others seeking business success:  Find a great mentor, who empowers you to grow, encourages you through your failures and celebrates your successes.


Parting thought:  Believing that we all belong to the family of humanity, and life is finite inspires me to listen to others and work toward lasting change for good.


The B2B ID is compiled by Janice Beetle of Beetle Press in Easthampton, a PR and communications firm.  www.beetlepress.com.


http://bit.ly/1jFK6Io Gazette.com

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Believing that we all belong to the family of mhumanity…

Family of Humanity Wendy Lane Wright

“Believing that we all belong to the family of humanity, and life is finite inspires me to listen to others and work toward lasting change for good.” ~Wendy Lane Wright

“I have a deep desire to leave my community more stable, one where my neighbors flourish and grow, by doing everything in my power to provide access to the resources and education that they need to accomplish this.”

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Legacy Reflections

Legacy Reflections

I took this amateur photo last Saturday. 

As I reflected, I pondered what I will be remembered for?  What is my legacy to my children, grandchildren, family and community? What can I give?  Time, talent, integrity, love, empathy, resources…?

What do you want to be remembered for?


Food, Family & Fun

Food, family and fun!  

I spent last weekend visiting with family and friends.  It was my great nephew’s Birthday.  My nephew smoked a brisket along with some pulled pork.  We had a family picnic by this fireplace – laughing and celebrating life.  


Life can be so bittersweet! We laughed and fought back tears, often at the same time.  It was a happy and sad day.  It was the one year anniversary of the death of a family member, “Uncle Piggy“.  Last April he was diagnosed with cancer and passed away on September 28th, 2012.


Perspective – My sister and her husband worked their entire life, like so many people, and never had the opportunity to retire.


Gone, but not forgotten! “Uncle Piggy” earned his nickname some 35 years ago when he told my sister she was “a piggy for eating coffee ice cream”.

Auntie & Uncle Piggy

His niece looked up with wide and resolute eyes, purposely sharing: “Auntie is not a piggy, you are”!  That nickname stayed with him through my sister’s funeral and his – not just by my family, but by his entire family and all of our extended friends, too.


Knowing we all belong to the family of humanity, and life is finite inspires me to listen to others and work toward lasting change for good – Inspire it…Enjoy it…Do it!


My boss shared this insightful GuideStar article.  http://www.guidestar.org/rxa/news/articles/2013/befriending-your-donors.aspx?hq_e=el&hq_m=2088457&hq_l=18&hq_v=36f0e74a2a


“Self-confidence combined with interest in other people. These are individuals willing to look me in the eye, offer a firm handshake, and show curiosity. They’re willing to engage, and, most important, they show a talent for listening… The first three letters of fundraising are “f-u-n,” after all.”  –  Thomas Wolf


Thank you GuideStar for sharing this blog post yesterday on Google+: Teaching philanthropy – yes, it works!  http://ow.ly/phLvk


That blog post links to a study on How Parents Teach Charitable Giving matters:


What impact will the government shutdown have on individuals, families, communities, charitable giving, nonprofits…?  This article from Philanthropy Today caught my attention: http://philanthropy.com/article/Government-Shutdown-What-It/142021/?cid=pt&utm_source=pt&utm_medium=en  “We elect officials to govern, and when they fail in their obligations they get a failing grade from us,” said Diana Aviv, president of Independent Sector, a coalition of nonprofit and foundation leaders said at her organization’s annual meeting today. “Shutting down government hurts communities, it hurts poor people, it hurts families. It’s time for them to get back to the business of governing.”


What will be the legacy of this government shutdown – these elected officials?


We need to help strengthen individuals, families and communities!

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“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” ~Lori Siebert

Butterfly 3

I am in the process of writing a speech that I’ve been asked to deliver at an upcoming Gala. 



In preparation I looked back through previous speeches that I have written and found the following Excerpt from a Groundbreaking Award Ceremony.  “We have a lot of reasons to say “thank you” David for all the contributions that you have made over the last 31 years. 



The first thought that comes to mind is the extraordinary effort you’ve put into everything you’ve done.  You have transformed so many lives through your work, including the time you have dedicated as a volunteer serving on the boards of local, regional and state nonprofits to build stronger communities.  


David began his long and dedicated career by playing an instrumental role in bringing children out of the Belchertown State School and finding ways to integrate those children into their community.  He worked to get them into group homes, apartments, involved them in public schools, and gave them access to area parks and shopping malls.  Although there is more work to be done in this area today, we thank you David, for the ground work you started by being part of this exciting and challenging national movement. 


No job is easy all of the time and some people would say your work David as an Executive Director is not easy.  But you always have an optimistic outlook on what historically has been done, a vision of what needs to be done, and a strategic plan for what will get done. 


David’s famous words around the office are “to be continued”, and David we thank you for all the innovative contributions that you continue to make in our agency and community.” 


David has since passed away.  He was an inspirational leader who empowered me and all those around him to grow.  He was a true change agent that made life better for others.

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