WellesleyWeston Magazine

WINTER 2013/2014

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

Issue link: https://wellesleywestonmagazine.epubxp.com/i/210435

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Page 115 of 211

World of Welesley "We engage young people at a time when it is important for their development." – Richard McGhee alities, and ethnicities. "I felt the MLK, Jr. Breakfast was very special," to co-sponsor events, WOW relies on the proceeds from advertise- says Jennifer Lim, a former board member of WOW. "I loved the ments from the events booklet that is published annually. It is distrib- speakers who would talk about their work. It was very inspirational." uted with The Wellesley Townsman and is available for free at different The MLK, Jr. Breakfast is WOW's only event that charges an admission venues around town. The proceeds that are raised from advertising fee. Every other event is offered free of charge to the public. To be able usually total between $21,000 to $25,000 annually. It is easy to make facile assumptions about the demographics of Wellesley. Yet there are bright bands of differences threaded through the community that can go unnoticed. Indeed, since the time of WOW's inception, Wellesley's percentage of minorities has more than doubled from an anemic 7.2 percent in 1990 to a more robust 16.4 percent in 2010. To accommodate some of these international newcomers, WOW, along with many other organizations, co-sponsors "Wellesley ESL," a library program offered free of charge to those who live or work in town. There are 93 patrons from more than 28 countries who are learning English as a second language, and most of those are residents. "The program is doing brilliantly here," says Clemence. "It can make such a huge difference for someone to be able to communicate effectively." We l l e s l e y We s t o n M a g a z i n e | w i n t e r 2 0 1 3 / 2 0 1 4 It is for this reason that volunteers on the WOW board get involved. "I have lived in Wellesley since 1975 and back then I would only see white faces and hear one language spoken," says Phyllis Gimbel Schnitman, EdD, an associate professor of educational leadership at Bridgewater State University and former Chair of the Board and President of WOW. "As time has progressed, the town has begun to have a different complexion and I find that very exciting." All of the 114

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