Mission & History

Helping Our Women educates, empowers and supports women in the towns of Eastham, Wellfleet, Truro and Provincetown who are living with chronic, disabling or life threatening health conditions. We maintain an open-door policy to provide education and referrals to all community members.

We carry out our mission by providing direct services in three key areas: Transportation to healthcare appointments; Financial Assistance for women who qualify; and programs promoting wellness and social engagement.

The core values of compassion, assistance and support that brought together the first group of volunteers remain the foundation on which the staff and leadership at Helping Our Women carries out our mission today.

Incorporated in 1993 as a 501(c)3, we expanded the scope of services from cancer patients to include all women diagnosed with chronic, life threatening and/or disabling illness in 1994. In 2018, we celebrated 25 years of service and paid off the mortgage on our office at 34 Conwell Street in Provincetown.

Meet Our Team

Gwynne Guzzeau

Executive Director

Gwynne previously served as Executive Director for the Gestalt Institute of International Study. Her career has spanned many avenues, working in education, law, small business and holding public office. She has earned a JD from Georgetown University Law Center, an MS in Education from Wheelock College Graduate School, and a BA from Wellesley College. When not at work, Gwynne enjoys writing, beach walks and time with friends.

gwynne@helpingourwomen.org

Mary Berry

Office Manager

After years of summer vacations with family in Dennisport, Mary discovered the Outer Cape as an adult and fell in love.  She moved to Wellfleet in 1994, married and raised two girls, now 20 and 22. Mary has previously worked in office management for several years at Fidelity Investments and for the Turner Construction Corporation. For the past nine years she has served as office manager at the Gestalt Institute of International Study in Wellfleet. In her free time, Mary loves the outdoors and traveling, especially to any place with a beach and good food.

mary@helpingourwomen.org

Ella Anderson

Social Worker
After graduating from Hampshire College with her BA in Public Health, Ella came back home to the Cape and worked in Orleans from 2019-2021 as a case manager in the homeless services field. She then came to join the team at HOW in June of 2021 while pursuing her Master’s degree in Clinical Social Work. She serves as HOW’s social worker. Ella is passionate about mental health advocacy. She loves music, listening to people tell stories, and her cat, Cheddar.

ella@helpingourwomen.org

Lisa Philips

Volunteer Coordinator

Lisa recently moved from Cape Hatteras, NC to Provincetown with her husband, daughter and 2 dogs. She has worked as a health educator for the past 13 years in Northeast NC and before that for the American Heart Association in Kailua-Kona. She is a native of Cape Cod and enjoys being back home with family, playing tennis and traveling.

lisa@helpingourwomen.org

Annette Medina

Food Pantry Manager

Annette’s volunteer work in our pantry developed into a part-time job and we are fortunate to benefit from her decades of retail experience managing and presenting product in our small food and personal care pantry. Her influence extends to our client services and wellness programming.

annette@helpingourwomen.org

Jayne Carvelli-Sheehan, MSN, R.N.C.S., Chair

Sr. VP, Beth Israel Lahey Health
Boston and Provincetown, MA

As Chair of the Board, Jayne’s insights from the healthcare industry are guiding HOW to a new level of engagement and vision for women’s wellness and well-being.  Jayne lives in the Boston metro area and in Provincetown when she can make it down for a long weekend or for remote work. 

Marianne Thomas, Vice Chair

Executive Search Consultant, retired
Wellfleet, MA

Vice Chair of the Board, Marianne was recognized as the 2020 HOW Volunteer of the Year for her exceptional dedication to direct services for the women we serve. She has done everything from provide rides on, accompany women to healthcare appointments, and even served as a pall-bearer at one of our members funerals during the first months of the pandemic. Her insights into the everyday lives of the women we serve rounds out our strategic thinking and planning. 

Marianne Clements, Clerk

Human Resources Professional, retired
Provincetown, MA

Marianne is the Board Clerk. Marianne lives in Provincetown and her institutional knowledge of HOW – serving on the Board since 2010 – provides context and insight that guides our discussion and planning. 

Mia Cliggott-Perlt, Treasurer

Operations Manager, Chip Capelli Accounting
Provincetown, MA

Mia serves on the Provincetown Planning Board, and other local committees. She interned at HOW in 2019 as part of her graduate school program. Mia’s connections to the local community and a younger generation of professionals represent the kind of engagement across generations that will keep HOW sustainable and moving forward. 

Julie Britt

Executive Director, retired
Boston and North Truro, MA

Julie offers knowledge and vision from a career in Higher Education Administration as HOW prepares to open new offices in Eastham. As well, Julie brings extensive board experience having served on multiple boards. Julie lives in the Boston metro area and North Truro.

Pam Drolsbaugh

Retired Nurse
Eastham, MA

Pam volunteers on a regular basis – providing rides to our client members. Her insights into the needs of clients, informed by her years as a nurse have helped drive our focus on developing a new Peer Wellness Coaching program for which we’ve just received funding to begin planning. 

Susan Kurtzman

Jobi Pottery, Owner
Truro, MA

Former Director of the Truro Historical Society, Susan brings insights from her non-profit work, as well as  her prior careers as a creative director for McCann, a leading NYC creative agency, and as an educator. Susan’s broad range of skills and insights will help guide our outreach and growth. 

Madeleine Larson

Registrar and Collections Manager, Provincetown Art Association & Museum
Chatham, MA

Madeleine’s connections to the local community and a younger generation of professionals represent the kind of engagement across generations that will keep HOW sustainable and moving forward.  Also she has worked at the Town of Provincetown’s early childhood care program, so she brings to the Board an immediate familiarity about the needs of young families working and living on the Outer Cape.

Lourdes Rodriguez-Nogues

Psychologist, retired
Provincetown, MA

Lourdes brings decades of experience supporting the emotional well-being and mental health of Boston area LGBTQ professionals, in particular. She serves on the Board of Dignity USA and we are fortunate to have her depth of knowledge about emotional and mental health, especially now, as we continue to navigate the challenges of adjusting to the pandemic – as a staff, as an organization, and as a Board. 

Joachim Sandbichler

Patio American Grill & Pepe’s Wharf, Owner
Provincetown, MA & Miami, FL

Joachim is a long-standing supporter of HOW whose annual fundraising efforts have contributed significantly to HOW’s growth. A part-time resident of Provincetown and Miami, he’s looking forward to using his business skills to help HOW move forward for continued success in the next 30 years.  

Berta Walker

Provincetown, MA

Donald & Barbara Edwards

Provincetown, MA

Betty Villari

(1942-2017)

Barbara Knapp

Retired Bank Mortgage Officer
Eastham, MA

Lori Meads

President/Chief Executive Officer of Seamen’s Bank
Truro, MA

Deborah Shell, LICSW

Psychotherapist
Wellfleet, MA

Nancy De Luca

Professor, University of Massachusetts-Lowell, Retired
Provincetown, MA

Ann Maguire

Real Estate Developer, Political Strategist, Community Organizer, retired
Marblehead, MA

Elise Huang

Food Project Coordinator / AmeriCorps VISTA 2021-2022

Volunteer Resource Developer – Americorps VISTA 22-23.  Victor has brought his attention to detail and can-do attitudet to coordinating volunteers, organizing events, and meeting HOW community members. Originally from Cairo, Egypt, he moved to the Outer Cape from Boston and is currently studying for an MA in Psychology. He has helped launch our on-line volunteer platform and expand our capacity for volunteer outreach and engagement by creating in-depth monthly newsletters.

Elise Huang

Food Project Coordinator / AmeriCorps VISTA 2021-2022

Community Food Program Coordinator – Americorps VISTA (21-22). Elise relocated from Columbus, Ohio to Cape Cod as part of a pandemic-inspired career pivot. With a passion for food, holistic health, and wellness, she’s looking forward to applying her skills to HOW’s nutrition and food projects. She is excited to explore the beautiful coast and communities of the Outer Cape.

Alex Nelson

Volunteer Resource Developer\Americorps VISTA 2021

Alex served for 6 months as our Americorps VISTA Volunteer Resource Developer (2021) and worked as Development & Communications Coordinator before moving onto a full-time position with our community partner Outer Cape Community Solutions.

Katie Brandon

Food Project Coordinator / AmeriCorps VISTA 2020-2021

Community Food Program Coordinator – Americorps VISTA 20-21. As the first Food Program Coordinator for HOW, Katie pursued new sources of food donations and identified resources to share with our clients. A 2018 graduate of Boston University (B.S.), she used her Americorps tuition award to pursue a Master’s in Public Health at University of Nevada in Reno.

Chloe Heidepriem

Volunteer Resource Developer / AmeriCorps VISTA 2019-2020

Volunteer Resource Developer – Americorps VISTA (19-20). Chloe grew up on Cape Cod in Orleans and graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst Honors College in the spring of 2018. She built capacity in our volunteer program and with Katie Brandon, created the “HOWIES” annual award show recognizing our volunteers (Helping Our Women’s Inspiring and Exceptional Supporters) which continues to evolve as each new VISTA builds on the original vision. Chloe used her education award to pay off some student loans and she used the one-year federal hiring preference to help land a job with Americorps.

Rachel St. Germain

Volunteer Resource Developer / AmeriCorps VISTA 2018-2019

Volunteer Resource Developer – Americorps VISTA (18-19). Rachel’s year of service as HOW’s first Americorps VISTA was the beginning of a successful partnership with Americorps. Her graphic design skills were a critical contribution to HOW during her year of service, as was her steady manner navigating an organizational shift in staffing at the end of 2018 due to retirements or moves out-of-state. She used her education award to pay off some student loans and she continues to support HOW as a donor and volunteer when her schedule allows.

Need Help?

If you or someone you love could benefit from the services offered by HOW, please contact us to learn more about what HOW can do for you.

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