Our Stories


4 RSVP volunteers receive President’s Lifetime Achievement Award

HOLYOKE — Imagine serving coffee, cooking meals, planning trips and knitting sweaters for more than 4,000 hours — not for oneself, but for others; not for pay, but for charity. These are just a few of the ways that RSVP of Hampshire & Franklin Counties volunteers serve their communities.

Others join Deerfield Bar-Way Farm in turning manure into energy

For years, dairy farmers have used cow manure as fertilizer to spread over crops like corn and hay. But some farms in western Massachusetts have a new use for all that manure — renewable energy. The farms, in Deerfield, Hatfield and Granville, are embarking on a project to turn cow manure into electricity as a way to become self-sustaining and stabilize their finances in what they say is a volatile market.

HCG, Franklin CDC, to offer local foods to schools

As students at Leverett and Erving elementary schools dig into their vegetables this fall, they may be getting a taste of local farms thanks to a new collaboration of the Franklin County Community Development Corp. and the Hampshire Regional Council of Governments. HCOG’s Purchasing Cooperative and the CDC have announced a Pioneer Valley Vegetable Venture for 16 school cafeterias and organizations around western Massachusetts, one that will offer locally grown fruits and vegetables for their menus.

Hampshire Power plans to power the Big E with all clean energy

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The buildings at the Big E have begun the process of converting to renewable energy. Hampshire Power in Northampton eventually intends to power all of the buildings with green energy. The power company hopes to recruit other businesses from its booth located just outside the Massachusetts building.

George A. Symborski: Cites accomplishments of county agency

Serving as a representative on the Hampshire Council of Governments is an honor and privilege. I say this because the council provides a strong example of local leadership working at its best, along with a dedicated team of staff and volunteers. Council representatives come together to seek common ground for their town’s problems and unique challenges. Regional solutions are not always obvious or one-size-fits-all, but the lesson in civics on display during our meetings is that you keep plugging away for the greater good.

Eileen Stewart: Cites accomplishments of HCG staff

I am struggling to reconcile the recent article about the Hampshire Council of Governments staff bonuses (“HCG hands out bonuses to staff,” Sept. 21), with the reality of the organization and the critical work it provides to the local community.

HCG represents a new model of how we come together

to co-create the community we want.

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