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Merrimack County Savings Bank Grants $2,600 to New Hampshire Humanities Council

Concord, NH – February 11, 2015 – Merrimack County Savings Bank Foundation recently granted $2,600 to the New Hampshire Humanities Council (NHHC). The grant will support Connections, the organization’s literacy program for new readers within Concord and Greater Nashua. This is one of 19 awards presented by the Foundation to not-for-profit organizations, according to Paul Rizzi, Merrimack CEO and President.


Paul Rizzi, Merrimack President and CEO (right) presents check to Deborah Watrous, New Hampshire Humanities Council Executive Director (left)

“We are happy to offer support to an organization like the New Hampshire Humanities Council, which has a proven track record of enlivening and enriching our community” said Paul Rizzi, President and CEO of Merrimack County Savings Bank. “Connections invites adults struggling with literacy into the wider community of readers and supports workplace readiness. We’re thrilled to once again have the generous support of Merrimack County Savings Bank in this vital work,” said Deborah Watrous, Humanities Council Executive Director.

Connections uses a model that is effective with emerging readers all along the literacy spectrum, from adults who are pre-literate to those working to complete their GED. It increases reading and comprehension, encourages critical thinking, strengthens conversation and interview skills and provides opportunities for leadership development.The Humanities Council offers Connections programs statewide in partnership with adult learner service programs, ESOL classes for new immigrants and refugees, GED classes, and prison parenting support programs. The mission of NHHC is to strengthen communities with education programs fostering reflection, discussion and connection to new ideas, which support:

  • local culture and educational institutions during hard economic times by awarding grants for innovative learning programs and capacity-building;
  • citizens to reason together, to learn from and listen to one another;
  • teachers with cost-effective, content-rich professional development that strengthens the teaching of the humanities in our schools, from civics to Native American history;
  • and communities of readers, especially among those struggling with literacy and new citizens.

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