5 Things You Need to Know Today in Worcester – July 18, 2019

by | Jul 18, 2019 | Headlines, News

Town of Millbury Awarded $1 Million Climate Change Grant

On Tuesday, Governor Charlie Baker and Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Kathleen Theoharides joined state and local officials to award a $1 million grant to the Town of Millbury for a climate change adaption project, part of $12 million awarded to communities throughout the Commonwealth through the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Program

The Town of Millbury received a $1 million grant for the Armory Village Green Infrastructure Project. As part of a larger downtown revitalization effort, the project will reduce flooding and stormwater runoff to the Blackstone River through the use of green infrastructure like stormwater planters, bioretention bump-outs, rain gardens, tree box filters, tree planting and porous pavement.

“While Massachusetts continues to be a leader in pursuing clean energy options, it’s also important to help communities identify opportunities to reduce risks and to build resilience against potential threats such as extreme weather and climate-related hazards,” said Senator Michael Moore (D-Millbury). “This funding through the MVP program will go a long way to help my hometown of Millbury adapt to climate change, and to implement recommendations previously identified by the community.” 


Clark University Historian Reveals Evidence of Planned Annihilation of Armenians in 1915

Letters referring to a decision to “annihilate” all Armenians have been authenticated as the work of Bahaettin Şakir, one of the architects of the Armenian Genocide, according to a new study by Clark University history professor Taner Akçam. His paper, “When was the Decision to Annihilate the Armenians Taken?” appears in the Journal of Genocide Research.

Akçam writes that the signatures on the two letters, dated March 3 and April 7, 1915, match those of Şakir on other documents. Akçam also says he has unearthed new documents from the Ottoman Archives showing initial decisions to exterminate groups of Armenians were taken by a local branch of the paramilitary organization, Teşkilat-ı Mahsusa (Special Organization), led by provincial governors in December 1914.

The Armenian Genocide, the Ottoman government’s systematic extermination of 1.5 million Armenians, was carried out during and after World War I. While present-day Turkey accepts that many Armenians living in the Ottoman Empire were killed in clashes with Ottoman forces during the war, it continues to contest the 1.5 million figure and denies that the killings were systematically orchestrated and constitute a genocide. This denial — which continues despite a recent United Nations Joint Allegation Letter demanding that the Turkish government investigate the treatment of Armenians from 1915 to 1923, establish the truth, and make reparations — has hinged on the patchy archival record.

“These letters indicate there was an actual, conscious decision taken to annihilate the empire’s Armenian population, and that it was taken before March 3, 1915,” says Akçam. “Moreover, there were other related decisions that preceded this final one, as a series of documents we discovered in the Ottoman Archives shows.”

Holy Cross Awarded $100k Grant for Buddhist Ritual Art Exhibition

The College of the Holy Cross, in conjunction with the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Art Gallery, are pleased to announce that the National Endowment of the Humanities has awarded a $100,000 grant in support of a major exhibition of Buddhist ritual art. “Dharma and Punya: Buddhist Ritual Art of Nepal” will be on view in the campus art gallery throughout the fall semester beginning Thursday, September 5 through December 14.

Led by co-curators Dr. Todd T. Lewis, distinguished professor of arts and humanities in the Religious Studies Department at the College, and Dr. Jinah Kim, professor of history of art and architecture at Harvard University, the exhibition will be displaying historic objects of Buddhist devotion, on loan from major art institutions and private collectors, and will be accompanied by extensive programming.

The award is the result of an application submitted for consideration to the NEH last summer by the co-curators and the director of the Cantor Art Gallery, Roger Hankins, with assistance from the College’s offices of Sponsored Research and Foundation and Corporate Relations. Dr. Lewis, a specialist in South Asian religions, and Dr. Kim, an art historian who focuses on Asian art, have been developing the exhibition for several years in collaboration with Hankins.


Mass Debt. Relief Foundation Hosting Fundraiser at Grill on the Hill

Mass Debt. Relief Foundation – a non-profit organization providing pro-bono bankruptcy representation to low income individuals — is hosting a Game Night fundraiser on August 3 from 6 PM to 9 PM.

The event will have a DJ, dinner and tons of games. 

Tickets are $30 per person if purchased by July 27. After that date, tickets will be $35. Tickets can be purchased here

For more information on who MDRF helps, please click here


Massachusetts Ranked as Having Second Least At-Risk Youth in U.S.

In their latest report — 2019’s States with Most At-Risk Youth — the data experts at Wallethub have listed Massachusetts as havin the second least at-risk youth in America.

WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across data set ranges from share of disconnected youth to labor force participation rate among youth to youth poverty rate.

To see how Massachusetts compared to the rest of the country, scroll the map below:

Source: WalletHub

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  • 5 Things You Need to Know Today in Worcester – July 18, 2019 2

    Patrick Sargent is the founder and lead reporter for ThisWeekinWorcester.com. He was born and raised on Grafton Hill and is a graduate of Holy Name high school and Worcester State University. For two years prior to launching TWIW in 2017, he worked as a contributing reporter for the Worcester Sun. Previous to that, over the course of several years, he had stints with GoLocalWorcester, Worcester Magazine, the Leominster Champion and Fitchburg Pride. He is the owner of Sargent Media, LLC and can be contacted at [email protected] or 774-232-1223.