The Charlestown Coalition News: 

Issue 71

July 2022


Recap: Peace Park Clean Up!

Thank you to everyone who came out to help us clean up the Peace Park. We had a great day with many volunteers, making for light work! We will be holding clean up and maintenance events about every month and a half - reach out to Ciara to get involved!

Additional thank you to neighbors Jim & Judy, Shannon, Sister Mayra, Mswati and the TURN IT AROUND Summer Program, the Kennedy Center and their summer group, and Marissa from the Mystic River Watershed Association. Huge thank you to Neal Boyle, MassDOT employee, Charlestown resident and father to Sean for teaching us how to use the fire hydrant and coordinating with Boston Fire Department to ensure we can keep up with watering the flowers and plants.

Taking care of the Peace Park while we wait for it’s eventual reconstruction is a priority to the Charlestown Coalition. Together we make a difference!

Launch of Resource Drop In Center at 76 Monument

We are thrilled to announce the official opening of the community resource center drop in space at 76 Monument St, spearheaded by the Charlestown Resident Alliance. We are holding hours on Tuesday and Wednesday from 12-3pm for residents to drop in and get assistance with numerous things. See the flyers for more information or contact the CRA or Mel Soto directly!


On Friday July 29th, Sarah, Ciara, Mel & Mswati were out in Roslindale for the MGH Center for Community Health Improvement’s work retreat. We got to network with other community health teams from Chelsea, Revere, East Boston, and more. Sarah & Ciara's competitive sides came out and they won a scavenger hunt and a lawn game. Team building is so important to prioritize!

Highlight: Healed People Heal People Panel with Transformational Prison Project

On July 19th, our TURN IT AROUND youth prevention coordinator Mswati Hanks participated in a powerful panel with two of our community partners, Maverick Landing Community Services and the Transformational Prison Project, to discuss community violence, gun violence prevention and the importance of collaborating in this work. Thank you to both organizations and to City Councilor Mejia for coming together on this important topic.

PLAN: Charlestown

We need your voice to determine the future of Charlestown! PLAN: Charlestown surveys are now LIVE.

PLAN: Charlestown is a neighborhood-wide comprehensive planning initiative. The process was started in 2020 in response to anticipated improvements to Sullivan Square and Rutherford Avenue, an increasing number of development proposals in Charlestown’s previously industrial areas, and a citywide need for more housing. In partnership with the community, the plan aims to produce a framework to shape Charlestown's future, accommodating new, contextually appropriate growth along the Rutherford Avenue Corridor and in Sullivan Square while preserving the character of its existing residential areas.

The Plan will promote: 

  • Affordable housing creation
  • Climate resiliency
  • Increased mobility
  • New parks, open space
  • Predictable and contextual growth
  • Stronger local businesses and job creation

Attend an upcoming listening session to provide feedback on what you want to see in Charlestown!

Look at PLAN: Charlestown and give feedback HERE!

Join us on Tuesday, August 16th at 5:30pm for our monthly Race & Equity Discussion. This series explores important topics about the impact of race, policing in urban settings, and equity. It is open to all members of the Charlestown community and the general public. Please note meetings are once again in person at the Peace Park until further notice.


This forum is being co-sponsored by the Charlestown Coalition, Turn It Around Youth Program, Councilor Gigi Coletta and her team.

Keep your eyes peeled to spot our new banner!

TIA Summer Group Launch

Our TURN IT AROUND Summer Youth Enrichment Program had a great month of July - exploring the Boston area from hiking to swimming to fishing to observing art. We wanted to give a shoutout to Kim Mahoney for hosting us at the Warren Tavern last week for lunch and always supporting us!

Community Partner Highlight: BPDA

We are so grateful for our community partners and could not do this work without them. This month we want to highlight the Boston Planning and Development Agency. The Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA) is the planning and economic development agency for the City of Boston. The BPDA plays a far reaching role in shaping the City. The BPDA is charged with growing the tax base, cultivating the private jobs market, training the workforce, encouraging new business to locate in Boston and existing businesses to expand, planning the future of neighborhoods with the community, identifying height and density limits, charting the course for sustainable development and resilient building construction, advocating for multi modal transportation, responding to the city's changing population, producing insightful research on our City, and ensuring Boston retains its distinctive character.

Upcoming in Charlestown:

Upcoming Coalition Meetings

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Trauma Response Team

August 2nd at 5:30 PM

Meetings are held at the Charlestown Boys and Girls Club. Contact

Phenice Zawatsky to learn more.

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Charlestown Family Support Task Force 

September 6th at 12:00 PM

Meetings are held virtually until further notice. Contact Phenice Zawatsky to learn more.

Where Are They Now?


Guess Who? It's Fatima!

Find out what she has been up to and how TURN IT AROUND has impacted her life!


Youth of the Month

TURN IT AROUND’S Youth of the Month for July is Ariana Alarcon-Flynn. Ari has always been one of the brightest lights we have in the TIA program. And this summer has been no different! For the past 3 summers, Ari has been working at Save The Harbor / Save the Bay, a Boston non-profit focused on making Boston Harbor and its beaches inclusive, equitable, and accessible for all. During this time Ari has been a great representative of, not only the TURN IT AROUND program, but for Charlestown youth, with how she approaches her work there. And as chance would have it, the TURN IT AROUND Summer Youth Enrichment Program kids ran into Ari last Wednesday at an event she was working at. As always, she was friendly, helpful, and just a joy to be around. Her enthusiasm is so contagious!! We couldn’t be more proud of her!!

Congrats Ari!!

-Mswati Hanks,

Youth Program Coordinator

To learn more about our programs, our staff, community partners, resources, upcoming events, TURN IT AROUND, program impact, and more, click below:

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