Posted by Bob Wicks on Oct 14, 2020
Wrapping up a project that began in August, the Rotary Club of the Brookfields and its partners now have assembled and delivered more than 125 protective Plexiglass desk shields to seven elementary schools in our area.  The schools receiving shields are located in Brookfield, East Brookfield, North Brookfield, Spencer (Wire Village), Sturbridge (Burgess), Warren, and West Brookfield.
These shields were made possible by the collaboration of two Rotary Clubs, Brookfields and Sturbridge, plus our non-profit partner, Angels Answer Inc., our business partner, Country Auto Body in North Brookfield, and several generous donors.  The shields were constructed over several weeks from high-quality components. We are grateful to volunteer Ron Lapointe for his help in securing and cutting the Plexiglass.     
We asked Rotary project leader Mark Minnuccci, an official in the North Brookfields School District, to comment on the value of the shields to our local schools. “This project really shows how Rotary works," he says. "Brookfields Rotary assembled a collaborative team that has provided additional equipment, which not only helps with safety but also gives staff and teachers peace of mind that they can deliver services to students. It has been invaluable to my district and other districts in the greater Brookfield area.”
Lynn Duffy-O’Shea, president of the Brookfields club, spoke about the project and its reception in the schools. “In this difficult time, where in-person activities are limited, being able to come together safely to cut and assemble Plexiglass protective shields with our partnering club, the Sturbridge Rotary club, was amazing," she says. Everyone working outdoors as a team, while maintaining safe distances and masks to make this project come together in a fast and efficient way, was key so that the finished shields could be delivered to the schools as soon as possible. The principals and staff were overjoyed with happiness and thankfulness of Rotary’s continued support to the needs of the community schools.”
The enthusiasm of local school leaders is represented in this note from Burgess Elementary School Nurse Lisa Meunier“Thank you so very much for your hard work and wonderful design of the desk shields!," she states. "They are far superior to the type we have purchased and much appreciated.  I have shared them with our speech therapists, OT therapists, reading and math specialists who work with individual students, our psychologists who do testing, and our guidance counselors.  The design is perfect and the only type we have found that allows for passing of paper or objects under the shield - very important for all of them! They were all very excited to receive them! Thank you so much for all of your hard work and determination to make things better and support our school during this challenging time. It is so nice to have your support and interest in the success of our students and school community. Thanks to all of you! "
The Brookfields club extends its appreciation to everyone who contributed to the success of this project and to making the return to school safer for the students and faculty.
For more information, contact Bob Wicks of the Rotary Club of the Brookfields at