BELLOWS FALLS, Vt. – How does Parks Place Community Resource Center in Bellows Falls stay in touch with a changing world? The staff at Parks Place sees changes every day, and the board of this 25-year nonprofit seeks out differing perspectives. The two new board members are Krista Gay, a young lawyer from Athens, and Kathleen Govotski, activist with the Rotary Club of Bellows Falls and the Chamber of Commerce.
Krista Gay is a first-generation college graduate, who has returned to her roots in Vermont. Coming from a low-income background, Gay focuses on the difference free résumé help and Department of Labor counseling make to teenage parents, providing the resources they need to change their lives. Changing lives with the right resources is the Parks Place mission. Gay is the youngest member of the Parks Place board at 29, and she wishes more millennials and gen Z youth would seek board positions. Vermont institutions need young voices to keep their services in tune with young seekers.
Kathleen Govotski comes to the board with years of small business experience and family Italian and Irish traditions. As a founder of Halladays herb business and florist shop, and the Harvest Inn, she knows the Bellows Falls community well. Govotski’s connections have been forged over many years living in Vermont, and her husband and children offer additional Rockingham perspectives.
Two important services that Parks Place is focusing on are harm reduction bags, and the diaper bank. Turning Point, which is housed in the carriage barn, has harm reduction bags available. These bags include test strips for drugs, and Narcan – critical, life-saving supplies if someone you love is using drugs. You can pick them up from Turning Point during business hours, no questions asked. Parks Place is here to help connect you.
April is the month of the young child, and Parks Place has some exciting resources for parents. While the diaper bank is not new to Parks Place, the increase in need is. Living in the post-Covid era has stretched people’s budgets, challenging our ability to access basic needs. The diaper bank is here to help support families. Again, no questions asked. While you’re picking up diapers, ask about the playgroups in the area for mothers and fathers.
For more information about Parks Place Community Resource Center, or to donate, walk in the door at 44 School Street Extension, Bellows Falls, or call 802-463-2297. You can also visit our website at www.parksplacevermont.org. Parks Place serves a wide community, both town and rural, without questions. Director Jennifer Heidbrink welcomes invitations to spread the word about the programs Parks Place supports.