Building Communities
Changing Lives
July 2022
Dear Friends,
 
As we enjoy this warm July, our staff at Community Teamwork remain as busy as ever, including the staff of our Early Education and Family Child Care programs, who serve close to 1,000 children and families throughout the year. 
 
That is why we are so excited to report that the House and Senate recently approved a bipartisan Bill which makes a multi-year commitment to increase funding for early education and childcare, so urgently needed for our children, families, and the economy. This piece of legislation increases the access and affordability of high-quality early education and childcare for Massachusetts families, which is so important to our state and local communities’economic recovery.
 
We are grateful for all who do the work in these programs and especially for our Legislators, whose ongoing support helps us continue to serve our children and families.
 
Thank you to our Legislators for delivering such great news!
 
Gratefully,
Summer Images from our Child Care Centers

Some of our children enjoying various activities and events including:
Teddy Bear Picnic Parent Engagement
Ice Painting Engagement
Acton Discovery Museum
Shaving Cream Play
and
Sunflower Socialization
Community Teamwork’s

Lowell Farmers' Market Returns!

This year, the Market is being held at Mack Plaza
29 Shattuck Street
(corner of Shattuck and Market)
from July 8th to October 28th 
Fridays*, 11am-3pm 

*Except for July 29th/ Folk Fest weekend


We are happy to welcome a variety of vendors including new local artisans and craftspeople, as well as a few new farmers. Just this week we welcomed BitzNPeace Farm, Lucas Land Glass, Mill City Mercantile, Mill City Grows, Phalla's Produce, Fresh Farms, Spindle City Corps, YouthBuild, the Financial Literacy Center and City Hall Café.

-- Photos by Julia Malakie, Lowell Sun on 7/13/22

For more information, contact Jessica MacDonald: jmacdonald@commteam.org

WIC Farmers' Market Coupons will be available at the Lowell Farmers Market at Mack Park on Friday August 5th from 11-3pm at the WIC table. First-come first-served. Must bring ID and WIC card. Participants must be active and at least 4 months old as of August 5th.

Need to apply or reapply? Go online to start your application https://www.mass.gov/forms/apply-for-wic-online
or call us at (978) 221-8815; (978) 454-6397. 

Disability Pride Month occurs in the United States every July to commemorate the passing of the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in July 1990. The celebration has received support worldwide and is celebrated at varying times of the year.

Since 1990, Disability Pride Month has celebrated all 1 billion disabled people, their identities and culture, and their contributions to society. It also seeks to change the way people think about and define disability, to end the stigma of disability, and to promote the belief that disability is a natural part of human diversity in which people living with disabilities can celebrate and take pride.[12] People with disabilities make up 15% of the world's population[13] and are the largest and most diverse minority in the United States making up approximately 26% of the population[14] with people representing all ages, races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, religions, and socio-economic backgrounds.

Murals paint Lowell with art, diversity and community
Local, international artists to paint murals in August


In 2019, Project LEARN, Inc. (Lowell Educational Alliance Resource Network) and local partners collaborated to launch ArtUp Lowell, “a youth-arts and place-making initiative designed to create dynamic and culturally relevant art in public spaces to celebrate and engage Lowell’s diverse communities. This isn’t just about murals going up and being a flash in the pan, this is about full-scale community building,” Project LEARN Executive Director LZ Nunn said.
The mural on the side of the CTI building on Dutton Street is by
Dominican fine artist, graphic designer and activist Evaristo Angurri.

Out of that collaboration came the initial project in which two large-scale murals were installed in 2021. Seven more installations are planned for August.

“Representation matters. The first two murals were by a Puerto Rican and a Dominican artist, which are the majority of the Afro-Latinx community in Lowell,” CTI Chief Program Officer Carl Howell said. “Having amazing art in their community that reflects their culture brings community engagement because residents are seeing themselves represented in skill and in the art.”

*some images removed to meet file size limitation.

We have to Talk about Housing
How do we speed this process up to provide housing that is needed?

Please visit: www.commteam.org/talkabouthousing to learn more.

To find out how you can help, contact: talkabouthousing@commteam.org


Peter Clenott
Pens Historical Fiction Novel Inspired by Family History
Peter Clenott, Senior Housing Counselor with Community Teamwork, is now a published author and he is so excited!

THE UNWANTED is the culmination of nearly half a century of Peter trying to break into the writing business. It is his last fling at getting some recognition for all those years. If you like a period piece (WW II) or a mystery that isn't resolved until the very last sentence, THE UNWANTED is for you. You can find the novel at LaLa Books on Market Steet or online on Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Please do.

Check out Peter's website at https://peterclenott.squarespace.com

Local author pens historical fiction novel inspired by family history - Lowell Sun 7/2022 Read article here 
Financial Literacy Center
The Financial Education Center

Do you know about the Secure Jobs program? We’re able to help anyone living in a DHCD funded shelter, receiving RAFT assistance or HomeBASE funding to advance their career and job training efforts. Our coaches can help create robust resumes, aid in job search, and even help enroll in career training and education programs. Those qualifying for Secure Jobs have the opportunity to advance their careers as well as receive aid to help break down any barriers that could be holding them back from retaining work. This can include some help with overdue bills, transportation, and paid education and training. Secure Jobs Program Flyer
Home Modification Loan Program

Meet Kathleen Bergeron. We are excited and honored to welcome Kathi as our newly appointed Home Modification Loan Program (HMLP) Coordinator.


Kathi has led an impressive career and brings over 28 years of experience in the mortgage banking industry. Prior to her role at Community Teamwork, she has extensive experience working as an Operations Manager and has been recognized for her leadership abilities in underwriting, processing, and closings. Kathi is passionate about working at Community Teamwork and being able to provide opportunities to those needing help the most. She enjoys volunteering and being a supportive member in her community. When Kathi isn’t volunteering, you can find her traveling, listening to live music, or spending time with her close-knit family and friends. Please join us in welcoming Kathi to the Community Teamwork family.
Kathi can be reached at kbergeron@commteam.org.

To learn more about the HMLP Program - visit
First-Time-HomeBuyer Webinars

To register for an upcoming webinar, choose one of the links below. You must attend all four ZOOM classes. 6:30pm-8pm. Next Class is August 16, 18, 23, and 25.

In addition to the great programming we offer, our social media pages offer tips and tricks focused on financial literacy and education, as well as any updates or important notices. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and reach out to Brittany McLaughlin (bmclaughlin@commteam.org) to be added to our newsletter mailing list.

Visit our website for information about all of our programs:
Housing Consumer Education Center (HCEC)
Residential Assistance for Families in Transition (RAFT)
The federal Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) stopped accepting applications on April 15, 2022. Households can still apply for rental assistance from the more targeted, state-funded Residential Assistance for Families in Transition (RAFT) program.

The RAFT program helps keep households in stable housing situations when facing eviction, loss of utilities, and other housing emergencies. RAFT provides qualifying households with up to $7,000 per year to preserve current housing or move to new housing. RAFT can cover utilities, moving costs and overdue rent, as well as forward rent in limited situations. Renters or landlords can apply by submitting an online application.
 
RAFT does not serve homeowners. Homeowners may access mortgage and other assistance through the federal Homeowner Assistance Fund (HAF).


The Emergency Rental and Mortgage Assistance (ERMA) program ended on December 31, 2021. Homeowners may be eligible for assistance through the Homeowner Assistance Fund (HAF). To learn more about eligibility, resources and to apply, homeowners can visit www.massmortgagehelp.org.


Visit Community Teamwork's website for more information:


Calling all Housing Provider Partners
Community Teamwork is looking for 2 and 3 bedrooms units in Lowell and Lawrence and surrounding towns.

Units must be deleaded. We can offer longer term leases. This is a special program and provides some extra benefits to the owners.

Please call 978-654-5802 and leave a message and we will call you back.


YouthBuild of Greater Lowell Program

The Lowell Youth Leadership Program (LYLP)

Lowell Youth Leadership Program's mission is to connect and engage Lowell youth by empowering them to develop vital life skills and encourage them to lead and thrive through cooperation with each other.
 
LYLP’s immediate goal was to serve Lowell youth ages 10-16 by hosting a free two-week summer day camp at the Greater Lowell Technical High School from June 30th to July 15th, 2022. The program combined life skill instruction with a variety of sports activities.
 
LYLP camps focus on a mind-body connection between mental health and physical health while providing healthy meals to all participants.

The YouthBuild Culinary Team delivered a BBQ Chicken and Roast Potato Lunch on the first day of LYLP! #KidsWhoCook @ChefAnnaJabar - Thank you to Lowell Youth Leadership for allowing YouthBuild to partner in such important work and to Merrimack Valley Food Bank for their ongoing support of community service! #lowellyouthlp  #MVFB 

On the final day of the Lowell Youth Leadershp Program, the YouthBuild team cooked a Barbecue dinner for 100 campers and about 30 Board Members, staff, and guests.

The LYLP is funded through the Lowell Community Foundation.

For more information about the Culinary and Construction Programs, Contact Tim Caldwell - 978-905-7375 or Janise Rosario - 978-770-8543      
167 Dutton Street, Lowell Ma 01852

This workforce Product was funded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration. This product was created by the Grantee and does not necessarily reflect the official position of the U.S. Department of Labor.
Youth Services

Thank you to staff from @MerrimackValleyFoodBank and @Reach_Lowell for visiting The Mill You and implementing Supporting Wellness at Pantries (SWAP) here at our Snack Shack! We are looking forward to implementing more food education in our space. Supporting Wellness at Pantries (SWAP) is a stoplight nutrition ranking system designed to help promote healthy food choices at food banks and food pantries.

Studies show that people who visit food pantries experience a double burden of food insecurity and chronic diseases. More than half of the families who visit food pantries have a household member with high blood pressure and one-third have a member with type II diabetes. These chronic diseases can often be prevented, managed, and reversed through the foods we eat. The goal of SWAP is to help increase the supply and demand for healthy food in food banks and pantries.


This newsletter is sponsored by our Premier Partner, Enterprise Bank, who continues to support Community Teamwork's mission each and every day.

We appreciate all of our Sponsors whose continued generosity allows us to fulfill our mission.
SPRING CELEBRATION SPONSORS
There are ALWAYS Ways to Help
If you find yourself in a position to help, your contribution will aid our efforts on every front as we work together to defeat COVID-19, care for our clients and families in their hour of greatest need, and emerge stronger than ever. 
COMMUNITY TEAMWORK
978.459.0551