On The Calendar – Dec 16

Mental-health Support Group
Dec. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29: The National Alliance on Mental Illness of Western Massachusetts (NAMI Western Mass.) announced its NAMI Connection support group in Easthampton. The group meets at Easthampton Congregational Church, 112 Main St., each Thursday from 6 to 7:30 p.m., at no cost to the public, and is designed for adults (18 and over) living with mental-health issues.
The group is facilitated by trained individuals who live in recovery from mental-health conditions. They are completely confidential and offer a sense of community that is based on sincere, uncritical acceptance. Individuals will gain insight from hearing about the challenges and successes of others.
NAMI Connection groups allow participants to talk about their experiences in a safe and confidential setting. The group encourages empathy, productive discussion, and a sense of community. The group will help attendees find hope and develop relationships, develop better coping skills, help others while helping themselves, find strength in the sharing of experiences, and work toward a better future in a realistic way.

Low Vision Support Group
Dec. 6: Kimball Farms/PineHill hosts a Low Vision Support Group the first Tuesday of each month at 3 p.m. in the PineHill Art Room, 235 Walker St., Lenox. The meeting is held in conjunction with the Massachusetts Assoc. for the Blind. This group welcomes people from the community living with visual loss to come together for support and education.

Alzheimer’s Support Group
Dec. 12: Kimball Farms/PineHill hosts an Alzheimer’s Support Group the second Monday of each month at 1:30 p.m. in the Kimball Farms conference room, 235 Walker St., Lenox. This group is an opportunity for people with a loved one living with Alzheimer’s disease or any form of dementia to come together for support and education.

Gingerbread-house Decorating
Dec. 14: North Adams Commons Nursing and Rehabilitation Center invites the community to its first annual gingerbread-house-decorating event at the Mary Spitzer Senior Center from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Those attending will decorate gingerbread houses to help decorate the Spitzer Center for the holidays, and enjoy coffee, hot chocolate, and muffins. To attend, RSVP to Kira at (413) 662-4403 by Dec. 12.

Pancake Breakfast for Seniors
Dec. 15: North Adams Commons will host a pancake breakfast for seniors from 9 to 10:30 a.m. The breakfast will include pancakes, sausage, eggs, and bacon with coffee and juice, and some holiday cheer. There will also be a raffle for a gift certificate. Students from the Berkshire Arts and Technology Charter Public School (BART) will volunteer at the breakfast.
Senior citizens interested in attending are asked to RSVP to Kira Breard at (413) 662-4403 by Monday, Dec. 5, as space is limited.

Tree of Love Ceremony
Dec. 17: As the holiday season approaches, the Baystate Wing Auxiliary has set the date for its annual Tree of Love ceremony. This special event, created to honor and remember loved ones, features ornaments that can be purchased, personalized, and placed on the tree with names in memory of family and friends. “There is a definite comfort in coming together with others to remember someone, especially during the holidays,” said Teresa Grove, president of the Auxiliary and Philanthropy officer for the Baystate Health Eastern Region, which includes Baystate Wing and Baystate Mary Lane Outpatient Center. The ornaments may be purchased for $5 for a single name and $10 for a family. In addition, the community is invited to be part of an event held on Sunday, Dec. 17 from 1 to 3 p.m., when the decorated Tree of Love will be displayed in the lobby located on the ground floor of the hospital. This special event will include fellowship, refreshments, and festive music by Voices of Love and Remembrance. “The Tree of Love is our annual tradition that warms our hearts as we remember loved ones and celebrate their lives,” said Carol Doyle, an auxiliary member who coordinates the event. All proceeds benefit the Baystate Wing Auxiliary, which in turn donates needed equipment and other items for the benefit of patients to the hospital. The funds from this year’s event will benefit the Baystate Wing Hospital Emergency Department expansion project. For more information about the Tree of Love or to purchase an ornament, stop in the Baystate Wing Hospital Gift Shop or call Doyle at (413) 267-9219.

Amputee Support Group
Dec. 21: The second bi-monthly meeting of the Western Massachusetts Amputee Support Group will take place from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital, 222 State St., Ludlow. Pizza, refreshments, and information will be provided.
This forum is free to the public. All are welcome, including amputees, family, friends, and medical professionals. Attendees are asked to bring questions and discuss various experiences and challenges amputees face on a day-to-day basis. Future meetings will be from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at HealthSouth on Feb. 22, April 19, and June 21.

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