The Five Minute Read

Dracut Veterans Appreciation Parade slated

DRACUT — The town is hosting a Veterans Appreciation Parade at 2 p.m. Sunday. Help honor veterans by participating. Participation is open to businesses, individuals and organizations.

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Although this is not a postponed Memorial Day Parade, the purpose and spirit of both parades overlap. The parade serves as the community’s symbol of respect for the fallen and celebration of the freedoms for which they gave their lives to preserve and protect.

The baseball association has teamed up with End 68 Hours of Hunger to do a food collection along the parade route. They will be pushing shopping carts to collect along the way and spectators are welcome to bring food items to donate.

Any questions or suggestions can be directed to parade organizers — Dracut Veterans Service Officer Jeffrey Hollett and Dracut Senior Center Director Bethany Loveless.

FEMA awards more than $3.5 million to Lowell General Hospital for COVID costs

BOSTON — The Federal Emergency Management Agency will be sending more than $3.5 million to Massachusetts to reimburse Lowell General Hospital for the additional costs of operating safely and handling increased patient loads during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Lowell General Hospital will receive $3,557,305 in federal funding to cover the increased costs of operating in a pandemic environment, including:

  • Purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) for its front-line health care workers;
  • Hiring additional contractors to perform COVID testing, diagnosis and treatment;
  • Setting up dedicated COVID-19 treatment wards in the hospital;
  • Paying for additional cleaning and disinfecting services to reduce infection risks;
  • Disseminating public health information.

“FEMA is pleased to be able to assist Massachusetts with these costs,” said FEMA Region I Acting Regional Administrator Paul Ford. “Providing resources for our partners on the front lines of the pandemic fight is critical to their success, and our success as a nation.”

FEMA’s Public Assistance program is an essential source of funding for states and communities recovering from a federally declared disaster or emergency.

So far, FEMA has provided almost $760 million in Public Assistance grants to Massachusetts to reimburse the commonwealth for pandemic-related expenses.

Additional information about FEMA’s Public Assistance program is available at https://www.fema.gov/public-assistance-local-state-tribal-and-non-profit. To learn more about the COVID-19 response in Massachusetts, visit https://www.fema.gov/disaster/4496.

New program provides free tablet computers and internet access to local residents

LAWRENCE — Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley and North Shore has a new program to provide individuals with a free computer, training and internet services through a partnership with Fidelity House Human Services & Career Resources Corp. of Haverhill.

The Digital Access Program is designed to bridge the digital divide between those who can access the online world and those who cannot. Participants receive a tablet computer, a data package if needed and in-person training about using the computer and the internet — free of charge.

“We are deeply grateful to the NiSource Charitable Foundation Fund for Merrimack Valley and The George C. Wadleigh Foundation Inc., the sources of the funds to make this opportunity possible,” said Elder Services’ CEO Joan Hatem-Roy.

The program is open to anyone, regardless of age or skill level, who wants digital training. Residents of Lawrence, Andover and North Andover — the communities affected by the 2018 Columbia Gas explosion — are especially encouraged to apply, according to Hatem-Roy.

Training is customized to fit individuals and their needs, varying from internet basics to social media or learning the advanced features of Zoom. If participants need a data plan/Wi-Fi access, the program pays those fees for up to one year. If, after six months, participants are using the tablet to engage successfully online, it becomes theirs at no cost.

(this story/news/article has not been edited by PostX News staff and is published from a syndicated feed)

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