May 15, 2020 Newsletter

We are excited to announce a new partnership with the Manchester School District, introduce our new Champions Council officers, tell you about a recent award, and ask for your help honoring our school employees. 

Celebrating our schools

We are working with the school district to share its good news. In conjunction with the district’s communication coordinator, we are reporting and writing stories highlighting the positive work of our schools. The stories will be shared through each of our communications channels, including our Facebook pages. 

The first piece highlighted the district’s success in continuing to offer its 21st Century afterschool program online to support students’ connections to one another and their school. Read it here:

Speaking of partnerships…

The school district is now hosting a weekly call with community partners such as City Year; Boys and Girls Club of Manchester; the YMCA and YWCA; Girls Inc.; Media Youth Power, United Way; and mental health providers to identify the existing support being offered to families, reduce duplication of services, and identify gaps in support.

“We will be better working together,” said Jenn Gillis, assistant superintendent.

New officers

Our new Manchester Proud Champions Council recently elected its new officers:

  • Chair: Liz Kirwan, English Language Learner teacher, MSD
  • President: Bob Baines, former Mayor and West High Principal
  • Treasurer: Arthur Sullivan, Owner of Brady Sullivan Properties
  • Secretary: Mike Delaney, Principal McLane Middleton Law Firm

“Manchester Proud’s momentum is the participation of its members and engaged citizens,” our new chair, Liz Kirwan, said. “I am truly looking forward to working closely with the community partners, teachers, students, BOSC, and District level leadership to ensure the youth of Manchester can become strong and vibrant leaders. With the implementation of the newly approved Strategic Plan, I know this is possible and look forward to the future when our students rise to leadership and continue to give back to their community and schools.”

We share this award with you!

Manchester Proud has been named the New Hampshire winner of the 2020 Champion Award by the New England Secondary School Consortium. In announcing the award, the Consortium’s executive director highlighted Manchester Proud’s emphasis on community engagement.

“Manchester Proud understands the need to actively engage educators, students, parents, and community members collaboratively to understand their concerns and create joint strategies to address these concerns,” said David Ruff. “Such collaboration ensures deeper commitment and follow through that makes a deep difference for Manchester students.”

Help celebrate our educators and support staff

The school district is asking the community to write a message of gratitude to teachers, bus drivers, food service workers, nurses – anyone you’d like. You can download and print a “gratitude” form here. Share a picture of your sign on social media and hang it on a door or in a window.

Feeding the city – together

Our schools and community partners continue to feed our students and families every day of the week. 

The district, with the help of City Year Core Members, has delivered more than 200,000 breakfasts and lunches to students via Manchester Transit Authority buses. The YMCA and The Boys and Girls Club are giving out grab-and-go meals to families at their sites weekdays. 

On the weekend, SNHU is giving out 7,000 meals every Saturday with the help of financial donations. That will end May 31 without additional contributions, which can be made through their website at

Overall, an extraordinary team effort.

Closing the Digital Divide

The school district and the National Collaborative for Digital Equity are collaborating to get computers and internet access to Manchester students who don’t have them. We are glad to support this initiative, called Operation Lemonade, and encourage you to visit NCDE’s website at

Stay tuned for updates on how you may be able to help.