Volume 10, Issue 1
Every sunset brings the promise of a new dawn.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Village Voices Opener
Network members' voices bring good news and share highlights from
around our community. 
Being in nature can be a powerful space to get quiet and return to ourselves. In particular sunsets have offered me a moment to sit with myself and marvel at the vibrant colors as the sun disappears under the horizon and the stars begin to shine. In the same way, I marvel and am constantly inspired by the passion, commitment and dedication of our Village Community.    

Sunsets are also a daily reminder of a new beginning. As we embark on the beginning of a new year, we invite you to join us in sharing your voice and gifts as we continue to work together towards a brighter future where children thrive, families can flourish, and everyone can feel a sense of belonging.  
Unsung Heroes Highlight Series 
In December 2022, we gathered to celebrate our remarkable Unsung Hero Awardees. Please stay tuned in our upcoming newsletters for an Unsung Heroes Highlight Series to learn more about the incredible work of these Awardees.  

2022 Awardees:
Dominique Bellegarde ~ Servant Leadership Award
Benjamin Bugs ~ National Partnership and Collaborative Leadership Award
Nieisha Deed ~ Innovation Award
Edwige Jean ~ Excellence in Mentorship Award
Maria McKnight ~ Unsung Hero Award
Network Events
2023 Children's Mental Health Storytimes Schedule
Network Resources
Community Opportunities/
Events/ Resources

Check out job, volunteer, and grant opportunities available in our
Our community mapping project Boston You're My Home is an intergenerational activity Bostonians of all ages can enjoy. Commemorate 2022 or imagine what you'd like to see in your neighborhood this year either online or by-hand on a printed blank map. If you've made your map already, be sure to upload it on our project website! We would love to compile 500 maps by this summer to get a comprehensive snapshot of Bostonians' experiences, so any help circulating this program is most welcome.  
Wednesday, January 11 at 5:30 to 7:00 PM | Virtual

Learning to Listen: Conversations for Change returns with three new conversations featuring inspiring leaders working on the frontlines of current and emerging issues for children and families. The conversations are for everyone who cares for and about babies and children, and the families, professionals, and communities that protect, nurture, and enjoy them. The free series kicks off on Wednesday, February 22, 2023, at 3 p.m. ET / 12 p.m. PT.
Episode 1:
How to End Gun Violence and Homophobic Hate: Two Mothers’ Journey through Loss to Love, with Jane Clementi and Scarlett Lewis
Wednesday, February 22, 2023, at 3 PM ET / 12 PM PT
Episode 2:
Harm and Healing: The Mental Health of AAPI and LGBTQ Children
with Warren Ng, MD
Wednesday, March 15, 2023, at 3 PM ET / 12 PM PT
Episode 3:
Human-Centered Design for a World Without Racism
with Makeeba McCreary and Augusta Miell
Wednesday, April 12, 2023, at 3 PM ET / 12 PM PT
All Learning to Listen conversations are one-hour long and feature live Spanish translation, closed-captioning, and an interactive Q and A. Certificates of attendance are available. Register today and join the conversation!
To better your chances of getting your child into a great-fit BPS school, make sure you register on time! If your child will be age 3 or 4 by September 1 this year, you must register them for BPS before February 3.
If your child will turn 3 or 4 years old by Sep. 1, 2023, now is the time to register for K0 and K1 seats for 3- and 4-year-olds, respectively. K0 and K1 seats are the largest entry point for BPS schools, as more than half of all BPS schools offer K0 and K1 seats for 3- and 4-year-old students. 
Boston Community Choice Electricity (BCCE) is a City-run program for Boston residents and small businesses that provides cheaper and more renewable electricity than Eversource and third-party suppliers. To enroll or learn more visit For additional resources visit
As the costs for basic necessities rise, more Massachusetts residents living on the economic margins must choose between buying groceries and paying for housing, transportation, childcare and other basic utilities. It’s a dilemma that plays out in hundreds of thousands of Massachusetts households every day. Hunger and access to proper nutrition remain pervasive, with nearly 1 in 3 adults experiencing food insecurity in Massachusetts in 2021, an increase from 2020. Hunger in Massachusetts is significantly higher among Black and Latinx populations, and visits to local food pantries have not returned to pre-pandemic levels. Food insecurity rates among Massachusetts college students, seniors, and immigrants also remain surprisingly high. The issue of food insecurity recently gathered national leaders at a historic White House Conference – 50 years in the making – on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health where a national strategy to end hunger and reduce diet related disease in America by 2030.

Now, leaders across the Commonwealth are convening and building a framework, drawing on the expertise spearheaded and piloted here, to advance our state’s food security by 2030 as well. Join a State House News Service/MASSterList forum featuring leaders, advocates, and experts for a discussion of opportunities and obstacles for Massachusetts to advance this national strategy across the Commonwealth.
7:30 – 8:30 a.m.
Networking and light refreshments
8:30 – 8:45 a.m.
Keynote remarks from U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern
8:45 – 9:45 a.m.
Panel discussion
(additional speakers to be announced)
  • Catherine D’Amato, The Greater Boston Food Bank President and CEO
  • Erin McAleer, Project Bread President and CEO
  • Sen. Jo Comerford, Co-Chair, MA Food System Caucus
  • Rep. Hannah Kane, Co-Chair, MA Food System Caucus
January 27, 2023, 11am CT / 12pm ET

Have you met Lily? She's a new friend on Sesame Street whose own journey to stay healthy helps kids better understand tough topics like food insecurity—so all families know how to access healthy food that fits into their grocery budget.
To learn more about the many new and creative ways Sesame Street is helping families stay healthy, join us in January for a free webinar, Growing Healthy Bodies and Minds with Sesame Street
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. Our event is called TEDxRoxbury, where x = independently organized TED event. At a TEDx event, TED Talks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events, including ours, are self-organized.
Founded in 1630, Roxbury is Boston’s geographic center and has seen many demographic shifts in its nearly 400 years. Today, Roxbury is considered the cultural hub and epicenter of Boston's Black and Latinx community. Given its rich legacy of innovation and activism, TEDxRoxbury seeks to highlight and showcase what Roxbury has to offer by letting the world hear our "ideas worth spreading" and providing a platform for the innovative, yet unheard voices in the community. This independent TEDx event is operated under license from TED.
Speaker Applications Due 1/31/23:
CORI legal assistance clinics 2023 schedule begins January 11 from 2pm to 4pm. Registration required. Register for the ZOOM HERE
Every 2nd Wednesday
of the month
2pm to 4pm
Virtual via Zoom
Join Our Wednesday CORI Zoom
Greater Boston Legal Services CORI &
Re-entry Project in Collaboration with
 the Boston Bar Association
The GBLS CORI & Re-entry Project will provide a short presentation by ZOOM on sealing and expunging record. People who want legal help will be sent to a private breakout room.
Every 2nd Wednesday of the Month from 2 PM-4PM
2023 Schedule
You can also email us for help at Leave a message at 617-603-1797, or see us in person at the Roxbury courthouse, 65 Warren St., Roxbury on 2nd floor or 3rd floor Thursdays of the month at 9 am to noon.
The United Way is looking to invest in Greater Boston!

With their recently launched Community Action Grants, @UnitedWayMABay is providing one-year unrestricted grants to local coalitions and grassroots organizations that are affecting local change in one of the following areas: early education and out-of-school time programs, youth and young adult pathways, housing stability, and/or economic inclusion and wealth building.

Submit your application by January 20th here:
Be part of the racial healing movement happening across the country on Jan. 17, 2023, for the National Day of Racial Healing. Let’s celebrate our common humanity and build solidarity by hosting or planning an event in your community, workplace and neighborhood.

Here are action kits to help you with planning:
Virtual Playgroups
$1 Dollar Sunday Afternoons


Every Sunday afternoon families can enjoy the entire Boston Children’s Museum for $1. The museum includes an Art Studio, Construction Zone, and more.

Sunday afternoon from 1:30 – 4:30 PM

Boston Children’s Museum, 308 Congress Street, Boston
If you earned less than $60,000 in 2022 let ABCD prepare your taxes for FREE! 
For those who meet eligibility requirements - Services offered:
Free Federal and State Tax Preparation - Free Electronic Filing - Free Direct Deposit - IRS Certified Tax Preparers - Services available in English, Spanish, French, Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Haitian Creole, and Cape Verdean Creole

Community Job Opportunities
Check out job, volunteer, and grant opportunities available in our
Jobs - Social Media
Assist jobseekers and students through the Boston Public Library's workforce development program. Master's degree required.
Design and implement a new program (inspired by My Brother's Keeper) to advance Boston's Black men by dismantling societal, economic, and educational barriers. This role lives in the Office of Black Male Advancement inside the Equity & Inclusion cabinet.
The Development Director will be a part of our exciting, growing non-profit organization and help MFFC with finance, development, programs, and overall sustainability. They will work to create structure and streamline MFFC’s processes and continue building on our fundraising efforts. A successful candidate will thrive on fostering relationships with funders, partners, and advisory members, and most importantly the residents of Mattapan; building and maintaining various fundraising systems and tools; writing and producing content related to development for distribution; assisting in the creation and implementation of the organizational budget, overall program management and develop processes to grow the organization, and have a passion for inspiring generosity for the betterment of improving the health of Mattapan residents.

This hybrid position is located in Mattapan, MA with remote and in person responsibilities. It comes with full benefits and a salary range between $57,000 to $60,000. If interested, or anyone you know who would be interested, please see attached job description and link to apply.

The Community Wellness Advocate Manager is responsible for leadership, supervision and professional development support of CCM CWAs. Specific responsibilities in these areas include performance management, recruitment, onboarding and participation in educational program planning.
Action for Boston Community Development is a nonprofit human services organization that each year provides more than 100,000 low income residents in the Greater Boston region with the tools and resources needed to transition from poverty to stability and from stability to success.

The Site Coordinator is responsible for managing the recruitment, orientation and training activities process for the AmeriCorps Seniors Foster Grandparent volunteers in Boston, Quincy and /or Eastern Middlesex area.
First and foremost, our youth summer job program has begun recruiting! We're currently hiring 14-17 year old students to participate in urban farming and food systems change work this summer - please use THIS LINK to take you to the application page. Applications are due Feb 28th but interviews start February 1st, so encourage them to apply early! Please help share the flier attached to this email, if possible.

Likewise, we're also hiring crew leaders for this year's summer job program! We hire young adults to lead crews of youth. Information about those jobs can be found at THIS LINK.

And please don't forget that the The Food Project and the Greenhouse Advisory Committee are now accepting applications from groups interested in growing seedlings to use in community based gardening projects! Click here to be directed to the seedling application. Please note that individuals cannot apply for space to grow seedlings for personal use. The deadline to apply for seedling space for community-based seedling projects is January 20th!

P.S: We are looking for groups of 10 or more people to participate in our group volunteer program (Serve & Grow). For more information, click here:

Scoop on the Stats
Explore data from across the United States
Black fathers with histories of incarceration experience psychological, social, and financial stressors that are often rooted in racial trauma. Fathers’ Uplift’s Evidence Informed Fatherhood Program (EIFP) uses a self-healing approach grounded in self-love, mental health care, resource support, and meaningful connection to equip fathers with self-parenting tools to overcome these barriers. 

In a recent publication entitled Evidence Informed Fatherhood Program, an Evaluation, Dr. Charles Daniels explores the impact of the EIFP approach on the psychological and emotional health of 551 fathers with incarceration histories, 97% of whom were Black. Findings showed that EIFP’s approach significantly decreased fathers’ life distress and improved emotional regulation skills in the 3, 6, and 9 months after their return to community. Recidivism rates among the EIFP cohort (4%) were four-times lower than rates in the surrounding county (16%) and state (17%) after 12 months. 

These findings contribute to a body of literature that advocates for the expansion of programs that promote emotional regulation strategies and trauma-informed healing for fathers with incarceration histories as a means of strengthening the wellbeing of parents, children and community. 

Citation: Daniels, C. C. (2023). Evidence informed fatherhood program: An evaluation. Journal of Social Work, 0(0). 

For more information about programs provided by Fathers’ Uplift for fathers and families, please visit: 

We also encourage you to watch Stories from Returning Citizens, where storytellers in the Vital Village community share experiences with incarceration, recovery, and housing in Boston.
Our Mission

Vital Village is a network of residents and agencies committed to maximizing child, family, and community wellbeing.

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