by Jen Yao
Lights, camera, action! The Don Manzelli Memorial Telethon, hosted by the Council of Social Concern, commenced on Sunday March 3 at the Woburn Media Center. This event is a significant fundraiser for the Council and its programs. It reaches out to local residents and business for donations. While calls from eager donors flooded the studio, the hosts and prominent community speakers in Woburn presented the event on local access TV until the very last ring.
In preparation, event planner Mary Laing instructed the Council of Social Concern (CSC) to do a mass mailing and make big posters to notify Woburn and Winchester residents of the event. On Sunday, volunteers arrived at the high school at 11:15 in the morning, ready to answer phones and organize speakers. Studio workers prepared the Media Center and hosts straightened their ties. Everything was set up and ready to go. The library was packed with people and food for the next three hours of the Annual Telethon.
When the clock struck twelve, donors went live on the local channel to give their pledge to the Council of Social Concern. The program also included interviews with donors as well as entertainment acts including Woburn High’s own senior Molly Kupris.
Junior Doug Salvati, one of the volunteers from CSC, described his experience at the telethon.
“While answering phones, I anonymously came into contact with exceptionally generous members of our community. As many of us donated volunteer time, these people donated what makes an equally great impact on the community and keeps the organization running,” Salvati explained. “Without these wonderful people, we as a community wouldn't be able to help those in need, which is one of our most important duties, so I'm grateful that I was able to help people help others by answering telephones for the event. Of course, it feels great to help out, especially for an organization as noble as the Council of Social Concern.”
Thanks to the generous community, the Council of Social Concern raised over $21,000. All funds will be given to the Council’s programs which include the Food Pantry Program, Family Childcare System, Children’s Center, Family Skill Building Parenting Education, and Family Skill Building Supervised Visitation.