Mayor Richard Kos, Library Director Nancy Contois, and Council on Aging Executive Director Sherry Manyak are pleased to announce that the Chicopee Public Library and the Friends of Chicopee Senior Citizens Inc. have each received a $40,218.31 donation from the Frances Wilkins Charitable Fund, a Donor Advised Fund of The U.S. Charitable Gift Trust.
The library will utilize their donation to help fund programming. Library Director Nancy Contois has begun exploring options to bring performers and new adult and youth services to the residents of Chicopee. The Friends of Chicopee Senior Citizens Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to helping older adults in the community, are also exploring options for the funding including Senior Center programs and projects.
“As a Chicopee High School Class of ’41 graduate, my mother was a member of the first Chicopee High cheerleading team and maintained a life-long love for the City,” recalled Carol Wilkins, D.M.D., Frances’ daughter. “Her hope was that these gifts to the Library and Senior Center will help others enjoy the City of Chicopee as much as she did.” Carol Wilkins, D.M.D, CHS Class of ’71, has maintained a life-long dental practice in Chicopee.
“We thank the Wilkins family as these funds honor the memory of Frances Wilkins for many years to come,” said Mayor Kos.
"We are very pleased to receive this grant from the Frances Wilkins Charitable fund,” said Library Director Nancy Contois. “Our goal each day is to provide services to our Chicopee community that may ultimately impact those we serve in a meaningful way. This is a touching reminder that the Library was a special place for Mrs. Wilkins and we extend our thank you to the Wilkins family and many friends who have donated to the Library in memory of Frances."
“The Friends of Chicopee Senior Citizens, Inc. is thrilled to accept this grant. This generous gift illustrates just how much of an impact the programs at the Council on Aging make on our older adults. Frances Wilkins must have truly appreciated what the senior center offers to include us in her list of charitable trust recipients,” said Al Picard, President of the Friends group. “We are currently considering what we will spend the money on. This windfall will allow programs and projects that need funding sources to come to fruition at the senior center.”
The City Council accepted the donation on behalf of the library at their September 21st meeting.