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The Fresh Start Newsletter

Ashley Street Project with NINA

Partnerships between community organizations build momentum in local transformations.

The Northside Institutions Neighborhood Alliance (NINA), with their mission of restoring homes and revitalizing Hartford’s Asylum Hill neighborhood, turned to Fresh Start in 2022. With an expansive renovation project at an Ashley Street home, the folks at NINA, who were already familiar with the Richard P. Garmany Fresh Start Academy, offered our students an unforgettable project: Create a new front porch for the 1895 Queen Anne-style home. The students worked on the design and then built the new structure alongside our crew of Fresh Start volunteers.

Richard P. Garmany Fresh Start Academy Graduation

Congratulations are in order! On Friday, July 14th, the Richard P. Garmany Fresh Start Academy celebrated another class of graduates. The seven students who completed the semester-long training in carpentry and drywall showed an inspiring dedication to learning new skills and preparing for their future. Each received their graduation certificate, surrounded by family and friends. We will continue to stay in touch with the graduates and

share their success in upcoming newsletters. Since the creation of Fresh Start we have celebrated 7 graduates. The photos capture the joy of July 14th graduation day.

Stanley Black & Decker Tool Donation

In early 2022 Fresh Start Pallet Products received a most generous gift from Stanley Black and Decker of New Britain: More than 25 power tools, including sanders, chop saws, table saws, drills, and clamps. These arrived just in time for the current class of students at the Richard P. Garmany Fresh Start Academy to use in their lessons and skill-building work in carpentry. The tools will continue to be an important part of the Academy curriculum. See the photo below for examples of how the tools are enhancing the Academy learning experience. Partners such as Stanley Black and Decker help us continue to offer on-the-job experience for students, providing them with tools similar to what they will use on the job site.

Celebrate West Hartford

On June 10th and 11th, Fresh Start Pallet Products sponsored a booth at Celebrate West Hartford. This two-day event allowed Fresh Start to share its mission inside the West Hartford community, as well as showcase the craftsmanship of our portfolio. We brought our famous Nantucket Chairs, giving passersby the opportunity to sit, relax, and learn more about our organization, including the Richard P. Garmany Fresh Start Academy. We even offered a raffle for our popular 2.0 Comfort Chair. Our devoted volunteers collected more than 100 raffle tickets over the weekend and also sold multiple items, including a live-edge table and cutting boards in the shape of our great state of Connecticut. Congratulations to our raffle winner! Above are some snapshots from this festive and productive weekend. Celebrate West Hartford is great place to greet our longtime friends and make some new ones, too. We hope to see you there next year!

Quick Cuts | Kindling is Available

We are celebrating the retirement of Rich Carman our acting President. Rich is sailing into a new chapter outside of Fresh Start.

  • Fresh Start Pallet Products is now part of the Hartford Chamber of Commerce.

  • Reach out to to learn more about how can get free kindling.


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