Village Voices
Network members' voices bring good news and share highlights from
around our community. 
Read the Child Perspective Blog by Cathy Luo, Vital Village AmeriCorps VISTA Community Mobilization Coordinator. Hear from children in our Village about their hopes and experiences, and be sure to check out the poll at the end!
Vital Village Community Champion and BMC Patient Navigator, Smith Lamothe (pictured above with his mother), was featured in the Boston Globe speaking on the role of healthcare workers in protecting the health and wellbeing of Black lives. Smith shared powerful words with his colleagues on June 11th as healthcare workers across Massachusetts joined in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement.

“This isn’t a white fight or a Black fight. The truth of the matter is this a human condition fight, and we need to come together. We are in this together."

- Smith Lamothe
Vital Village Community Champion
Boston Medical Center Patient Navigator

Our Wellness Ideas Bank was created in response to COVID-19 in March. As the situation evolves, we are updating our Wellness Ideas Bank to match the community’s needs and improve user-friendliness.

Network Events
Connect with Vital Village Network at these upcoming events. Click
event to RSVP or learn more .
Tuesdays July 14, 21 & 28, 6:00-7:30pm
From your computer or smartphone!

Families with young children are invited to Children’s Mental Health Virtual Storytimes co-hosted by the Vital Village Network Mental Health Committee and Boston Public Library. We will bring families together for book readings, activities, and resources focused on Social-Emotional Learning inspired by our Children's Mental Health Storytime Toolkit. Sessions are designed for children 3-8 years old, but younger & older siblings are welcome! Register here!
Saturdays July 11, July 17 and August 7, 9:30am-12:30pm, Online

Supportive Trauma Interventions for Educators  (STRIVE) is a collaborative project between Boston Medical Center’s  Child Witness to Violence Project and  Vital Village Network . STRIVE is providing trainings for Early Education and Care (EEC) settings across all seven regions in Massachusetts supported by the Attorney General Office's  Trauma-Informed Care for Young Children Grant Program . Our Summer 2020 trainings are hosted in partnership with Massachusetts StrongStart Professional Development Centers .

In partnership with Urban College of Boston, Vital Village Networks is accepting applications for scholarships to the Certificate in Community Leadership and Advocacy, a year-long, 9-credit, college-level certificate program that builds upon the capabilities of community leaders who are working to maximize child, family, and community wellbeing in Boston. Learn more on our website and apply by Aug. 7 here !
Call or email the Warmline:
Community Events
Join Vital Village Network partners and other community organizations at these upcoming events. Click event to RSVP or learn more.
10:00-11:30am, @ Online - Register for Zoom information
Countdown to Kindergarten is hosting a conversation with Superintendent Dr. Brenda Casselius on Boston Public Schools' Fall Reopening. This meeting is specially designed to hear from new incoming Kindergarten families about your questions and concerns in regards to the Reopening of Schools in the fall. We ask that you please register and we will send you a link to the Zoom meeting.
1:00-3:00pm, @ Online - Register for meeting information
For National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month, the Dorchester / Mattapan / Roxbury Support and Advocacy Network (DMR SAN) of NAMI is hosting this free annual community awareness event to have dialogue about the importance of mental health and self-care, inform about resources available, educate about aspects of dealing with mental health and create opportunities to share mental health concerns and needs.  Learn more and register here for the 4th Annual All That Jazz!
1:00pm-2:00pm, @ Online - Register to receive meeting information
This event in the 2020 Greater Boston Housing Report Card series will feature a presentation by UMass Donahue Institute on communities with the highest rates of COVID, intersection with race, income, and work (essential workers), and a policy discussion on the role of residential segregation, history of policy choices concentrating low income/POC, housing costs. Learn more and register here..

Thursday July 16, 23 &30, 3:00pm-4:30pm, @ Online - Register to receive meeting information
The Health Justice Academy from Healthcare For All is a free training curriculum for advocates, community leaders, community members, and health care / social service providers seeking a better understanding of how to advance health justice and protect access to coverage and care for MA residents in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath. Register here!
7:00-8:30pm, @ Online - Register to receive meeting info
Join DeeDee's Cry's month-long series Black Mental Health Matters. On July 18th, DeeDee's Cry presents Journalism and Mental Health featuring Boston 25's Crystal Haynes, James W. Hills of Java with Jimmy and more. Discussion moderated by Dr. Brandy Brooks and hosted by Robin Saunders. Register here!
7:00pm-8:30pm, @ Online - Register to receive meeting information
Learn about your constitutional rights and how to exercise them in encounters with law enforcement. This workshop, hosted by the Boston Public Library in partnership with ACLU of Massachusetts, is for teens in grades 6 through 12 (including 2020 high school grads). Register here to receive meeting information!

3:00pm-4:00pm, @ Online - Register to receive meeting information
This event hosted by NAMI DMR SAN brings the community together to share experiences in order to help increase mental health awareness in African American communities by addressing a number of important topics related to signs and symptoms of various mental health conditions. Click here to register!

Tuesdays, 2:00pm-3:00pm, @ Online - Register to receive meeting information
Join the Boston Public Health Commission Community Action Network (CAN) for Uplift the CAN Tuesdays. Share safe spaces, navigate the many self-care resources that exist within our network, and celebrate coming together to learn, grow, support one another at a safe physical distance. Register to attend here!
  • July 14th Menstruation During The Pandemic cofacilitation with Bria Gadson of Love Your Menses.
  • July 21st Maternal Health Legislation Updates & Action cofacilitation with Tierney Flaherty, Intergovernmental Relations @ BPHC
  • July 28th Herbal Remedy Workshop with Nneka Hall CAN & Planning Committee Member.
  • August 4th Growing Greatness (Urban Gardening & Growing Techniques)
Check out more community events on our Website  and Facebook.

Check out job, volunteer, and grant opportunities available in our
The Department of Public Health is seeking an energetic, dynamic and self-motivated individual to serve as the Assistant Director of the Division for Children and Youth with Special Health Needs. The Assistant Director will be responsible for the Division’s internal needs, including handling the oversight of operations, activities and support for clinically-oriented programs. Learn more and apply here.

Meaningful employment opportunities available to Boston youth ages 15 to 18 in a wide variety of job fields like the arts, government & advocacy, STEM, sports & recreation, childcare, education, and more.  Learn more and apply for a summer position here!

The Department of Youth Engagement & Employment Internship Program is designed to support department goals by engaging Boston youth in workforce readiness development and providing access to resources, civic and learning opportunities. Learn more and apply to be a SuccessLink Leader here!

Roles: Provide homework help and mentorship to students in grades K-8; Attend trainings to build your problem solving skills; Work with other mentors and librarians to make library branches a safe and fun place for children. Must be in grades 10-12, maintain a 3.0 GPA or above, and be able to work a minimum of two shifts per week from September 21, 2020-May 14, 2021. Bilingual teens are especially encouraged to apply.  Learn more about the program here and complete the application here !
Resource Connector
Learn more about resources relevant to children and families in our community from our community.
Every Saturday, 10:00am-1:00pm, @ Corner of Cummins Hwy & Fairway

Hosted by the Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition (MFFC), the Mattapan Square Farmers Market is not only a place to purchase healthy food, but also serves as a place to bring residents together and as a resource for health education and other social issues. SNAP and HIP benefits, WIC farmers' market coupons, and Senior Farmers Market coupons are accepted!

Click the images to learn more about visiting farmers markets during COVID-19.
Have questions about requirements for submitting Interim Reports and Recertification paperwork for SNAP and other cash benefits? Check out this resource from MassLegal Services with information on what and when to submit to renew benefits.
Connections and Healing:
Thursdays, 6:30pm-8:00pm @ Virtual - Register to receive meeting information
hare your thoughts and feelings about whatever you are going through - personally and as part of the larger community. This is a safe space to share about trauma, loss, and grief - whether it be from personal losses, racism and historical/systemic trauma, or COVID-19. Visit the event page for Zoom meeting information.

Next Meeting: July 17, 6:30pm-8:00pm, @ Virtual - Register to receive meeting information
The Men's Support Group of The Cory Johnson Program for Post-Traumatic Healing is a free, open group that meets every other Friday via Zoom and is facilitated by Douglas Lomax. It is open to all men who are looking for support over trauma, loss, addiction, and all the challenges of these current times. The next meeting will be Friday July 17. Visit the event page for Zoom meeting information.
For Children:
Sign up for the Virtual Summer Program with Boys and Girls Club of Dorchester ! Space will be filled on a first come, first serve basis. These activities will run from the week of July 13th-August 21st.
To register, email Brendan McDonald at  with your Child's Name, Age, and Programs they wish to join. Check out the flyer for more info and a complete list of programs!

Sitters Without Borders is now offering Virtual BabySitting Sessions to parents who are taking on-line classes. The sitting sessions are available to parents while they are taking an on-line class or if they need time to do homework. Learn more and apply for a FREE sitter here!
Relief Funds:
Virtual info workshops:
Wed July 15, 12- 1pm (en Español)
Sat July 18, 11am-12pm

The Mayor's Office of Women's Advancement is offering $3,500 grants and business support to help your family childcare business keep our little ones safe. Apply at

Emergency financial assistance for local Minority and Women Owned entities in Greater Boston. The MWBE Contractor Relief Fund will offer a one-time relief grant of up to $2,500 to qualified contractors who have been sidelined due to COVID-19.
Other Resources for Boston COVID-19 Response:
Mayor’s Health Line: 617-534-5050
City of Boston Non-Emergency Line: 3-1-1
Meal sites in Boston:   Food Access Map: Meal Sites

MA Non-emergency helpline: 2-1-1 or call 1-877-211-MASS
>> Deaf/Hearing Impaired: 508-370-4890 TTY
>> For more info on Mass211:

Scoop on the Stats
Explore data related to child and family well-being.

How are child care centers ensuring the safety of children and families? As child care begins to reopen across the state, here is some info from the Massachusetts Dept of Early Education and Care on what to expect at your child care center.

Masks & physical distancing required at all times during drop-off and pick-up.

Staggered drop-off and pick-up times to minimize crowds.

Visual screening during drop-off & affirmation that child & members of the household are symptom-free.

For the most part, caregivers will not be allowed to enter to keep space clean.

Transportation may be available . Children will be screened before boarding vehicle.
What to Expect During Drop-off
Activities and Routines

Circle & nap time will happen at a distance.

Groups will not mix and will stay the same each day.

Staff are trained in safe food handling .

Face masks not required , but encouraged when there is prolonged close contact.

Individual play stations & sensory bins instead of communal

Outdoor play, small group playground time, and sprinkler fun encouraged!
Related Resources and Events

Join US Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley and experts for a conversation centering on the voices and experiences of Black mothers. Register here!


Tool: COVID Racial Data Tracker from BU Center for Antiracist Research and COVID Tracking Project.
Sharing Technology
Explore technology related to child and family well-being.
The  Abundance App   is now available on iOS and Android devices, as well as on desktops. Abundance empowers Boston residents to easily access affordable, high-quality food resources. Download the FREE app today!
CONtexts aims to promote positive outcomes between caregivers and children by sharing weekly resources through a FREE text service and interactive resource sharing map. These resources are ideal for anyone working with or caregivers of children ages 0-5.

To subscribe, text KIDS to 8-8-5-8-8
Once you're subscribed you will receive 3 weekly FREE text messages:
  • Monday: Nearby community resources
  • Wednesday: Wellness tips
  • Friday: Family-fun events
Our Mission

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