Local organization Probus Club marks 100 years of helping others


(WTNH) — The year was 1921. Warren G. Harding became our 29th president. The first religious radio broadcast was heard. And the Probus Club was born.  

The word “Probus” is an acronym for Professional and Business, made up of the very people in those fields dedicated to helping others intellectually and physically challenged.

Hamden native Les Faiman wanted to broaden the focus of who the club could assist.

“About six years ago, I realized that we are just focused on that small community, and felt that we should expand our footprint,” Faiman said.

By expanding its footprint, Probus also expanded its help in the community. Faiman is the event coordinator and has been instrumental in developing new programs.

‘Recycle your Bicycle” has received donations of over 450 bicycles to be refurbished for veterans, citizens and others in need. Another, “Warm Wishes” is designed to deliver blankets to shelters and soup kitchens, individuals in need of a nice, new blanket anywhere in the United States.

“Somebody we have in another state has already donated 52,000 blankets throughout the country,” Faiman said. ”So, we wanted to partner with that and hopefully do the same.”

That is a donation-supported program. An ongoing partnership with Bombas Socks has provided more than 7,000 pairs of socks to various agencies. In addition to fundraising, Probus relies on donations.

“We have an administrative account that solely is used for our administrative expenses. Every dollar we get in goes into our charity account and is used for these various charities.”

One of the staples of the Old Savin Rock in West Haven was Terry’s Honey Dew Popcorn.

COVID has interrupted the production of the revival of the sweet treat. But Faiman said it’s only a speed bump. Currently, he’s in discussion with a group home with the idea of giving some of its residents jobs and responsibilities. The popcorn will be another way to raise

‘We call it crazy popcorn for a crazy good cause.”

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