Village Voices 
Network members' voices bring good news and share highlights from around our community.   

May Network Connection Meeting Highlight:
Celebrating National Mental Health Awareness Month, Vital Village Network worked with community champions and partners to co-lead a 10-day campaign on social media and co-host the monthly network connection meeting.Thank you to our partners from  Boston Medical Center's Adolescent Psychiatry program , the  Child Witness to Violence Project , th e Boston Alliance for Young Children's Social and Emotional Wellness from  Boston Public Health Commission , Black Girls Nutrition, and Collaborative Parent Leadership Action Network (CPLAN), as well as community champions Sunday Taylor and Cherose Walker for spearheading this effort!

Innovations & Inspirations Night:
This month, we will host a special celebration in which the Vital Village Network Innovators will share their work to improve child wellbeing and reduce inequities using a variety of creative partnerships, strategies, and tools to build community capacity. The event will also premier a new short video, introduce new web-based resources, and launch a new technology! An interactive EXPO will allow you to see, hear, and experience the impressive work and learnings. Please RSVP and read on to learn more about the  incredible work being done by innovators in the network.

Vital Village Community Partnership seeks toiletry donations for Self-Care Kits. Self-Care Kits will be shared on June 16 at Fathers and Families Fun Day. Please bring donations to Innovations & Inspirations Night or email!

Network Innovators' Events
Connect with Vital Village Network innovators at these upcoming events

6:45pm @ Mildred Ave. Community Center, 5 Mildred Ave, Mattapan,MA
Mattapan Food and Fitness is a grassroots movement in the Mattapan neighborhood of Boston designed for making healthy and affordable food, safe and inviting recreational spaces, and streets and sidewalks readily accessible to all.  Join them at their upcoming monthly open meeting.

@ Upham's Corner Health Center, 415 Columbia Road, Dorchester, MA
Live better, live stronger, and live healthier. Join the Upham's Corner community at this June's installment of a monthly community gathering held at Upham's Corner Health Center.

June 1, 8, 15, 22, 29: Drop in Play Group at First Teacher
11am-1pm @ 221 Blue Hill Avenue, Roxbury, MA
First Teacher encourages parents/caregivers to recognize their role as their child's first and most important teacher. Get out of the house, meet other caregivers, and support your child's social development every Friday at First Teacher's drop in play groups.

Community Events
Join Vital Village Network partners and other community organizations at these upcoming events

5pm-8pm @ Reggie Lewis Center, 1350 Tremont St
Hosted by Women United,  the annual Community Baby Shower connects over 200 new and expecting parents experiencing economic hardship with maternal and early childhood education and resources, as well as gifts, food, and friendship.

12pm-4pm @ Harambee Park, 930 Blue Hill Ave
Join Family Nurturing Center, Dorchester CARES and many other community partners for a day of celebration and fun for Dads, Moms, children and families. There will be resource tables with information for parents and families, music, games and giveaways.

Franklin Park - Playstead Field, Pierpont Road
The Boston Art & Music Soul (BAMS) Festival is anticipated to be the largest celebration of Black arts, music, entertainment, food and culture for all ages in the City of Boston! This epic one-day, outdoor, multistage, fun-for-fall festival celebrates Afro-centric culture, heritage, and contributions to the American fabric.
Check out job, volunteer, and learning opportunities available in our community

Help First Teacher achieve their goal of raising $5,000 by hosting 40 lemonade stands around the city of Boston this summer. If you're interested in getting involved or hosting your own lemonade stand, contact Karla, call the First Teacher office (617-238-7275) or stop by: 221 Blue Hill Avenue in Roxbury, MA. #FToperationlemonade!

Volunteer as a Tutor or Classroom Assistant with Project Hope
Project Hope's Adult Educational Services (AES) department provides comprehensive Adult Basic Education, English as a Second Language, and Higher Education services to women over the age of 18 in Boston, with particular focus on enrolling Roxbury and Dorchester residents.  Learn more  about the opportunity to volunteer as a tutor or classroom assistant.

Program Coordinator (Paid Position) at  Chica Project
Chica Project (CP) is seeking a full-time Program Coordinator to lead and deliver programming focused on social-emotional learning, leadership and workforce development, and cultural identity exploration into CP's community events, projects, and activities. Learn more and apply today.

This innovative, free program hosted by ABCD prepares 13 year-olds for the future by introducing them to people, resources and powerful experiences that instill knowledge, confidence and determination. The 2018 ABCD YEA! summer session runs from July 16th to August 3rd, and the deadline for applications is June 29, 2018.
Innovation Spotlight
Learn more about a few of the inspiring Vital Village innovators, and attend the June 11th Innovations and Inspirations Night to hear from these groups and others

Abundance Mobile Application Development Team
Last fall, VVN's first ever community data workgroup convened to address a need for resources surrounding accessible, high-quality food in our community. They held meetings, built partnerships, and supported the creation of an online Food Access Data Dashboard . The team is now in the end stages of completing an app that allows users to provide real-time feedback to food banks, farmers markets, and anyone providing free or low-cost foods .

Black Breastfeeding Week #BreastPower Campaign
In August of 2017, Vital Village Network member Waetie Sanaa Cooper Burnette told the Boston Breastfeeding Coalition she wanted to organize a Black Breastfeeding Week Event. One year later, the team is back and ready for Boston's biggest event yet! They plan to gather  100+ breastfeeding moms of color to be photographed by nationally-renowned photographer  Lakisha Cohill! If you or anyone you know is interested in being photographed, fill out this formThe team will also plan  and publicize a week-long campaign to celebrate Black Breastfeeding Week the last week in August 2018.
Scoop on the Stats
Explore data related to one of the focus areas of a Vital Village Network Innovator  

Innovation Pilot grantee Lauren Graber, MD and project partner Sneha Rao, PNP are working together to bring trauma-informed Group Well Child Care to South End Community Health Center. Group Well Child Care is an innovative way to conduct health maintenance visits, providing mother-baby dyads the opportunity to be seen together in a safe space with their peers. This method of care delivery often allows physicians to better serve the needs of their patients, as it is associated with increased time spent in a doctor's visit, increased focus on discussion and education, expansion of social support systems, and an enhanced focus on maternal wellness. 

As Group Well Child Care becomes more widely accepted as an effective mode of care
delivery,  the medical community is working to figure out how it can be effectively implemented at new sites. Check out this paper on the feasibility of bringing group-based care to Federally Qualified Community Health Centers like Codman Square Community Health Center and South End Community Health Center - two places here in Boston where it is already