Volume 3, Issue 7; July 2016
In This Issue:

I.     Save the Date!
II.    Bright Spot
V.    Around the City
VI.   Research
VII.  Useful Tools
Save the Date:savedate
Train the Trainer
Are you interested in bringing neighbors  together  to  help advocate with and for each other?  Make a difference in your community by completing  GRASP Advocacy 6-hour train-the-trainer seminar!

The two 3-hour sessions of this training include:
  • An introduction to GRASP Advocacy: a practical tool that breaks down advocacy into 5 key themes
  • Illustrations of how GRASP Advocacy can be used to move from discussion to action -- no matter how big or small the problem
  • Opportunities to practice using the GRASP tool based on real-life examples from the local community
  • Practice leading advocacy role-plays and exercises
  • Tips on how to lead peer-advocacy meetings using the GRASP tool as a unifying model

When: Monday July 11th and Tuesday July 12th,
Where: ABCD's Roxbury / N. Dorchester Neighborhood Opportunity Center - 566 Warren St. Roxbury, MA 02121

For more information, contact Vital Village at or 617-414-3674.

Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC) Training
The Lactation Counselor Training Course is a comprehensive, evidence-based, college level, breastfeeding management course that includes practical skills, theoretical foundations and competency verification. Basic and complex technical issues are explored within the context of problem solving and counseling strategies. This course prepares participants for professional work in the hospital and in public health and community settings. It trains participants in how to gain insight into clients' problems with a strong focus on counseling skills. 

When: Monday July 25th - Friday July 29th 8:15am-4:30pm
Where: Black Box Theater, Codman Square Health Center, 637 Washington Street, Dorchester, MA 

For more information, contact

Bright Spots:bright
Networks of Opportunity (NOW) Convening 

Vital Village Network has received a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation entitled Networks of Opportunity for Child Wellbeing (NOW) that is  aimed at developing the infrastructure to support all children entering kindergarten at a healthy weight.   In addition to BMC, the central partners in this effort include the National League of Cities
 Institute for Youth, Education and Families; the BUILD Initiative; The Brazelton  Touchpoints Center; Communities and Hospitals Advancing Maternal and Child
care Practices (CHAMPS) Initiative (a partnership between the BMC Breastfeeding Center at BMC and Reaching Our Sisters Everywhere (ROSE)); and Children's HealthWatch.   Recently, 75 participants from over 39 cities and 21 states gathered for the NOW two-day meeting at the Babson Executive Conference Center to discuss how to support communities in integrating systems of care to promote optimal child well-being.
Boston Tech Community Awards $50,000 to First Teacher
On Thursday, April 7th, our partner First Teacher competed with other rising young non-profits to win $50,000. The First Teacher team showed courage and rigor as they presented their incredible movement, and were rewarded with both admiration and investment as one of two winners that evening. In director Dinah Shephard's own words, "this money, with no strings and lots of trust, will propel our movement in ways we simply wouldn't be able to without it, as well as open very connected doors that will help the First Teacher movement thrive."

Click here to read First Teacher's blog post about the award!
Praising Parents:praisingparents
This month we're celebrating this awesome dad who can't get enough of his baby's contagious laughter! Through a child's eyes, even a dandelion can be wonderful.

Have a video that you
 think would be perfect 
for next month's 
Praising Parents? 
Share it with us at
Around the Network:network
Mattapan on Wheels
Join the Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition for their 6th annual Mattapan on Wheels Biking event and celebration! Riders of all ages and skill levels will come together, get physically active and work to make Mattapan a more bike-friendly neighborhood. This year's activities include three biking routes for various levels, non-biking activities for everyone, and vendors from local, small businesses.

For more information, email or contact Mattapan on Wheels at 617-433-7050.

When: Saturday, July 23rd, 8am-3pm
Where: Walker Playground - 528 Norfolk St. Mattapan, MA 02126
BPS Paraprofessional Program
The BPS Community Paraprofessional Development Program  is a certificate program for community members interested in working as K-5 classroom paraprofessionals in Boston Public Schools.
The program will (1) provide a realistic job "preview" and exposure to content and key voices in the field of education in Boston; (2) support hands-on, practical experience of the content and interactions within BPS; and (3) work with program graduates to determine actions for pursuing a paraprofessional role within Boston Public Schools.

Applications can be found online, and are due on Friday, July 22nd.

For more information email or contact the Office of Human Capital - Diversity Programs at 617-635-9114.
Summer STEM Program
Mothers for Justice and Equality is launching their Summer STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Program for Middle School Students starting this month! The program is open to grades 6-8, ages 11-13.

For more information, email or call the office of Mothers for Justice and Equality at 617-516-8086.

When: July 5th - August 19th, 9am - 2:30pm
Around the City: city
MA Conference for Women - Scholarship Opportunity
The Massachusetts Conference for Women features motivational keynote speeches, engaging workshops and panel discussions that cover a vast range of topics specifically designed for women, including healthcare, leadership, managing change, finding work life balance, and personal finance. 

This conference is pleased to offer scholarship tickets for junior and senior high school girls to participate in the Young Women's Program track at this year's event. Click here to request scholarship tickets for deserving young ladies.

When: Thursday, December 8th
Where: Boston Convention & Exhibition Center
Community Job Fair
Come and meet top local employers at the Northeastern University Community Job Fair! Employers include Northeastern Bookstore, Poland Springs, and Staples. There will also be raffles and giveaways at the event. Click here for more information and to register for the event. 

When: Wednesday, July 20th, 10am-2pm
Where: Curry Student Center Ballroom 
-360 Huntington Ave. Boston, MA 02115
Public Safety Luncheon
Join the Determined Divas from the Family Independence Initiative (FII) for a community dialogue on public safety. City Councillors Ayanna Pressley and Andrea Campbell and community activists Leroy Peoples, Tina Ch éry, and William Morales will be participating in the discussion on community-centered solutions to violence, mental health, community policing, and other issues. For more information,  e-mail or call the Family Independence Initiative at  617-477-4175.

When: Saturday, July 9th, 11am-1pm
Where: Bruce Bolling Building-2300 Washington St., Roxbury, MA 02119 
Research: Research
The work of Vital Village Network and Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative was highlighted in a journal article recently published in Academic Pediatrics,  Neighborhood-Level Interventions to Improve Childhood Opportunity and Lift Children Out of Poverty. The article explores tools and strategies to systematically improve child opportunity. 

Click here  to read the full article!
Too ls:Tools
The Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE), a national network of government working to achieve racial equity, has developed a toolkit to integrate explicit consideration of racial equity into policies, practices, programs, and budgets. The toolkit can help to develop strategies and actions that reduce racial inequities and improve success for all groups. 

You can access the toolkit  here.
The Scoop on Stats:stats
staying up to date with data measurement!
At the Vital Village Network 5-Year Anniversary Celebration, we distributed surveys to learn more about our collective impact and shared goals. Check out our results below! 
Stay Connected
88 East Newton St. · Vose Hall, 5th Floor ·  Boston, MA · · 617.414.3674