Posted by Robert (Bob) Schecter on Nov 29, 2018
[The following story has been adapted from an Article on the Framingham Rotary Club appearing in the Ashland Local Town Pages -Ed.]
The Framingham Rotary Club is making life a little safer for an elderly Ashland family. If the weather cooperates, the family’s crumbling front steps will soon be repaired, thanks to an award from the Rotary’s Random Act of Kindness program.
The club established the program this fall in honor of one of its longtime members, Mark Rosen.  The club serves the towns of Ashland, Framingham, Holliston and Hopkinton, and several members reside in each of those towns.  Club members will be responsible for actively identifying needs in their communities and making recommendations to the Random Act of Kindness committee. If a grant is approved, the club member making the recommendation is responsible for seeing the award through. No cash donations will be awarded, but rather the Club provides hands on assistance to help make the community better.
“The Random Acts of Kindness Awards will be given to individuals who have a demonstrated acute need for financial assistance that is not met elsewhere, or in response to an urgent situation,” Bob Schecter, a Framingham Rotary Club member, explained. Schecter said that club members will consider situations on an as-needed basis, such as a family displaced by a fire, flood, or other disaster; a child who needs specialized medical equipment; and a child who needs to pay for school lunches.
Ashland resident Ken Erdelt chairs the Random Act of Kindness committee. He obtained several quotes before selecting a contractor to rebuild the steps. “All of the contractors were aware there is a sense of urgency to do the repairs as quickly as possible,” Erdelt said. The family receiving the award was nominated by Susan Wells, an outreach counselor from the Ashland Senior Center. Wells said, “The Rotary Club is repairing the unsafe, crumbling brick steps of a 94-year-old senior’s home to reduce the risk of falls and injury. Her husband, also 94, is a veteran and a nursing home resident. The woman receives meals on wheels, lives with her disabled son, and they both visit her husband in the nursing facility every day. So the steps are used daily. The family and I are extremely grateful for the club’s generosity.”
Framingham Rotary Club members volunteer at food pantries and raise money for various causes through membership dues and fundraising events, such as auctions, pancake breakfasts and carnivals. Anyone who wishes to contribute to the Random Act of Kindness fund may make a tax-deductible donation to the Framingham Rotary, P. O. Box 2173, Framingham, MA 01703. For more information, visit www.