Remembering George Huggins
We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our dear friend, colleague, and amazing chef George Huggins. He and his partner and wife, Sharan, brought Ethnica Catering to the community, housing their catering kitchen on the third floor of Hibernian Hall. Consequently, we were so fortunate to have their delicious service for countless events and gatherings at the ballroom over the past decade.

George was a kind man who worked very hard. His calm demeanor and quiet energy helped make Hibernian Hall a welcoming place for guests and audiences. This past year, George and Sharan contributed to MPDC's food distribution program, providing meals to Orchard Gardens & MPDC residents. George and Sharan were instrumental in providing weekly lunches for the senior residents of Smith House in partnership with MPDC and in response to a call to counteract food insecurity and social isolation among older residents.

George was born in Trinidad and Tobago but considered himself a citizen of the world. Early academic promise led to multiple scholarships in Trinidad and then France, earning French, Spanish, and linguistics distinctions. Studies in International Relations in Switzerland led him to work as a teacher, lecturer, and then Program Manager for the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the UN when he returned to the Caribbean.

He resettled in Grenada in1979, then moved to Santiago, Chile. George and his family then moved to Boston in 1989 to work with Oxfam America. Later, he and his wife established Ethnica Catering to express their Caribbean roots and years of world travel. A gardener and collector of hundreds of cookbooks, George will be deeply missed by Sharan, his wife of 36 years, and his children John, Jasmine, Nwaka, Kimani, Najeema, and his two grandsons Simon and Olivier.

All of us at MPDC will profoundly miss George. May he rest in power.
July 2021 @ MPDC
Save the date for MPDC's Virtual Sparks for Arts: 55th Gala
Virtual Sparks for Arts: MPDC's 55th Gala - Thursday, November 18th from 6:30 to 8:30 pm.
Save the date to celebrate MPDC's 55th Anniversary virtually with performances, surprises, Community Catalyst Awards, and the premiere of our 55th Anniversary mini-documentary on Thursday, November 18th, 2021.
Introducing MPDC's new
Deputy Director Ingrid Tucker
On August 2nd, Madison Park Development Corporation (MPDC) CEO Leslie Reid announced MPDC's new Deputy Director, Ingrid Tucker. 

Reid comments, "MPDC is excited to continue the work of building a vibrant and healthy community with the support of dedicated staff. I am honored to work with committed people invested in the uplift of Roxbury. We are looking forward to Ingrid's future contributions in this new role."

Prior to arriving at MPDC, Dr. Ingrid Tucker was the Head of Cambridge Montessori School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She began her tenure as Head of School at CMS in July 2011. She is a passionate educator with an extensive history in education, serving students from toddler through high school. Before joining the Cambridge Montessori community, Dr. Tucker served as President of Mother Caroline Academy and Education Center (MCAEC) in Dorchester, Massachusetts. Mother Caroline is a tuition-free middle school for low-income girls in Boston. For seven years, she was the former Middle School Director and Assistant Head of School at Beaver Country Day School in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. Before joining the Beaver Community, she was Director of Admissions at the Atrium School for two years. 

Her experience in Independent Schools began in 1993 at The Cambridge School of Weston, where she served as Dean of Multicultural Affairs, taught history, and worked as an Admissions Associate. Dr. Tucker spent six years training new teachers for the Association of Independent Schools of New England (AISNE) at the Beginning Teachers Institute in Little Compton, Rhode Island. She also trained public and private school teachers on Assessment, Classroom Management, and School Culture for the New England School Development Council (NESDEC). She has worked with public schools in Boston, Easton, Belchertown, and Westford, Massachusetts. Dr. Tucker joined fellow Heads of Color to offer a week-long summer intensive professional development course titled BOLD (Building Opportunities for Leadership Development) for aspiring Heads of Color from around the country. 

Dr. Tucker currently serves on several boards, including the AISNE Membership (Accreditation) Team, St. John Paul Catholic School in Dorchester, and Cardinal's Advisory Board. In addition, she served on the Board of Trustees at AISNE (Treasurer), the Montessori Schools of Massachusetts, the Board of Trustees at Chapel Hill Chauncy Hall School in Waltham, Dedham Country Day School, Boston Evening and Day Academy, Marynundo School for Girls in Rwanda, and was the Board Chair for Fellowship Christian Church in Boston. Dr. Tucker and her husband Phillip are the co-founders and Pastors of Awaken Christian Church. She is a native of Roxbury and is a die-hard New England sports fan. She enjoys traveling, writing, and spending time with friends and family. Dr. Tucker has a longtime commitment to service learning in socio-economically disadvantaged communities and is passionate about children and education.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism from Ohio Wesleyan University. During her senior year in college, she was an exchange student at Spelman College. In addition, she received a Master of Public Administration from Clark Atlanta University and a Doctorate in Education from Boston College. Dr. Tucker and her husband are the proud parents of four adult children, three daughters, and one son. They reside in Milton, Massachusetts.
Ingrid remarks, "I am delighted to join such a phenomenal team with great leadership and vision. I look forward to helping to advance the mission of MPDC while celebrating the past, embracing the present,
and planning for the future!" 
MPDC welcomes Governor Baker & teams up with partners to
get youth vaxxed!
On July 30th, MPDC’s Youth Workforce teamed up with CIC HealthBlue Cross Blue Shield of MA, and Cataldo Ambulance for the Boston Youth BBQ, Vax & Basketball Bash, at The Dewitt Center. Before the event, Governor Baker held a press conference announcing updated COVID-19 guidelines for Massachusetts.

After the press conference, youth were offered free COVID-19 vaccinations, raffles, basketball tourneys, art activity craft stations, and yummy food from Soleil and Mr. Kool ice cream truck.
Live DJs Boston Got Next’s DJ WhySham, and Seefour provided music for the fun day. Thank you, Governor Baker, Mayor Kim Janey, and Boston City Councilor At-Large Julia Mejia for joining us!
Highlights from MPDC's Youth-Led Mayoral Town Hall!
The Youth-Led Mayoral Town Hall took place on July 27th, with 150 people in attendance. Three young people - two from MPDC programs and one from Teen Empowerment - moderated the event. The youth organizers crafted the event format as a performance piece taking place at a Boston Public High School. The moderators acted as teachers, and the four mayoral candidates present (John Barros, Andrea Campbell, Annissa Essaibi-George, and Michelle Wu) were their students. The questions focused on education, policing, youth jobs, and housing. In addition to open-ended and yes/no questions, candidates and the audience participated in a Kahoot Boston Trivia activity. The event was produced by Madison Park Development Corporation and sponsored by Teen Empowerment, I Have a Future, Youth Justice and Power Union, and the St. Stephen’s Youth Program.
MPDC celebrates Health & Wellness Month in July
As we conclude Health Equity & Wellness month, we could not celebrate this work without acknowledging and thanking Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation (HPHCF), without whom MPDC could not have achieved the transformative expansion of its food access efforts. 

Through the Healthy Food Fund, which MPDC has been a cohort member of since 2019, we have been able to more than double food production and distribution at our community gardens, significantly increase our volunteer pipeline, and broaden the reach of nutrition education initiatives. Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation has continually provided support beyond funding, from capacity-building workshops and participating in MPDC events to providing critical COVID-19 response funding. We have been honored to collaborate with HPHCF these last 2.5 years and cannot thank them enough for being a true champion of our work! Check out what Mike Devlin, Harvard Pilgrim’s Director of Grants and Initiatives, had to say about our partnership.

“As a proud financial supporter of MPDC’s Hope Garden program for the past three years, the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation has been so grateful to see the beehive of activity that takes place there day in and day out, engaging both older adults and children and increasing access to healthy, fresh, affordable food. As a vibrant and welcoming space, urban gardens like this foster community while educating area residents on how to grow their food – and few places do it as well as MPDC’s Hope Garden. Congratulations to MPDC for creating an oasis of health, wellness, and community.”
MPDC wants to acknowledge the efforts of staff and partners, both past and present, towards fostering a vibrant, healthy Roxbury neighborhood.

From the incredible expansion of food access and nutrition efforts, including our beloved community gardens; to important community, organizing focused on ensuring that the built environment in Roxbury supports safe, healthy, active lives for all residents; to innovative partnerships with healthcare institutions like Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Boston Medical Center, that are bringing critical health resources directly to the homes and communities of our residents, we have a great deal to celebrate. 

But the work continues - now more than ever as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our community disproportionately - and we can't do this work without the help of our donors. Will you support these critical health equity efforts by donating today?

Remember, your gift of $1,000 or more qualifies for the Community Investment Tax Credit, which earns you a 50% state tax rebate on your gift!
Fourth of July 2021 at the Hope Community Garden!
MPDC's Health & Wellness team celebrated the 5th Annual Fourth of July Celebration in The Hope Community Garden. The evening included healthy food and a clear view of the fireworks right from the garden. This all-ages evening was a blast for everyone in attendance!
The Pauline Sheridan Room for Health and Active Living at the Smith House Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
On Saturday, July 17, 2021, friends and family gathered for breakfast and live jazz at The Dewitt Center patio to inaugurate the Pauline Sheridan Room for Health and Active Living at the Smith House. The room is named in recognition of Pauline Sheridan’s years of service as a Peer Health Leader and activist empowering residents of Roxbury to improve their quality of life through health education and engagement in healthy activities. MPDC honored Pauline, a resident of Madison Park Village for 41 years, for her lifetime of work to improve the health of neighbors and the entire Roxbury Community.

Upon completing the ribbon-cutting ceremony, residents toured the Fitness Room located on the 12th floor of The Smith House. The Fitness Room has five state-of-the-art fitness machines designed for people of all abilities. The Geriatric Fitness Specialist, Marlene DaCosta, provides personal training using a treadmill, strength training, and two Nustep cross-training machines. Currently, the Pauline Sheridan Room for Health and Active Living is only open to Smith House residents. We hope to open it to more seniors across Madison Park Village and offer group fitness classes in the future. The Pauline Sheridan Room for Health and Active Living results from a vision that the older adult residents of The Smith House and Madison Park Village communicated to MPDC.

Thank you to the Wellness Room Planning Committee, 2Life Communities, Francine Godfrey & Amy Schectman, WinnResidential, and project funder, Enterprise Community Partners.
It's time to Get Out The Vote!
Never has there been a time when the voices and votes of our communities needed to be heard and counted more. For that to happen, we must vote. If you want to ensure people get out to vote, you can volunteer to:

· Phonebank
· Doorknock
· Talk to your neighbors
· Recruit volunteers
· Join the Resident Voter Mobilization Committee 
For more information, contact Javier at or by phone at 617-849-6322.
Hibernian Hall x Black Film Space Presents the 2021 Film & Media Series!
Hibernian Hall and Black Film Space (BFS) are collaborating on the 2021 Film & Media Summer Series. Black Film Space is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the careers of black filmmakers. Their mission is to provide skill-enhancing opportunities, community-building experiences, and knowledge on navigating the film industry for people of African descent. BFS hosts film screenings, panels, networking mixers, professional development workshops, skill-sharing, and open forums. 

The 2021 Film & Media Summer Series is available to anyone ages 14-21 to engage in a FREE six-week virtual experience. The lab will be meeting online every Tuesday & Thursday from 2 pm to 5 pm (EDT) until August 19th. This program will focus on teaching the basics of filmmaking and podcasting. The instructors are Tari Wariebi and Reggie Williams.

For more info, visit:
MPDC congratulates Patricia Greenwood on her first home!
In July, another Madison Park Village resident became a homeowner. After years of hard work, preparation, discipline, and sacrifice, congratulations to Patricia Greenwood for securing her first home!
Patricia Greenwood and her two daughters have been residents of MPV for over 15 years. All of her life, Patricia has wanted more for herself and her children. When asked what motivated her to become a homeowner, Patricia responded, "Owning a new home has always been my dream. When I was younger, I was less fortunate. I always wanted to set an example for my children. I wanted a better life for them.”

After taking a first-time homebuyer class, Patricia did her homework and put her training into action. She put more resources towards savings, maintained credit and monthly debts, and made sure that all of her bills were paid on time.

After searching for a home for several months, Patricia won an affordable lottery for a new two-family home in Dorchester. Patricia's homebuyer knowledge also allowed her to take advantage of $50,000 from the MPDC Next Door down payment assistance program for first-time homebuyers.
“I always knew Patricia would be successful. She was coachable, she was determined, and we put together a good team. I can't wait to go to the barbeque.” Dwayne Watts, Community and Resident Manager at MPDC.
MPDC Welcomes Summer Interns
#DoItAtTheDewitt this Summer!
The Dream Program relaunched in-person activity on June 22nd at the Dewitt Center for an 8-week summer camp. The Dream Program seeks to help close the opportunity gap for youth living in low-income housing by pairing them with college mentors in hopes of creating an intentional, lasting relationship.

In July, Dream went on two field trips, where they did sailing at Piers Park and berry picking at Ward’s Berry Farm in Sharon, MA. The Dream Program will run through August 13th, 2021 at the Dewitt Center. 

3Point’s Summer Learning Academy kicked off at the Dewitt Center on July 6th. 3Point seeks to close the opportunity and achievement gap for middle school students of color in Boston. Last week, 3Point started their digital art projects and visited Franklin Park for golf lessons and the Phoenix for rock climbing. They also have guest speakers via zoom every Friday for Fabulous Fridays! 
Summer Youth Employment Program kicks off the Summer strong!
Over 50 Summer Youth Employment Program teen interns began the summer strong and in stride with a hybrid programming model that includes safely transitioning to several in-person internship sites and dynamic career development modules that occur in small groups. The model CPX (Career Path Exchange) has five career paths (vetted by the youth) paired with capacity building in paid internship sites in over 20 community partner sites. 
Thank you to our July 2021
Newsletter Contributors!
Arlene Baldwin
Dwayne Watts
Etai Belinki
Eva Ackerman
Haris Lefteri
Ingrid Tucker
Javier Gutierrez
Justina Thompson
Kay Mathew
Kelly Ransom
Leslie Reid
Leslie Stafford
Meghan Higgins
Yhinny Matos
MPDC's Annual Garden Tea Party!
Our annual Garden Tea Party is back and better than ever! Join us for all of the fun!

WHEN: Saturday, August 7th
11:00 am - 2:00 pm

WHERE: 55 Malcolm X Blvd, Roxbury, MA (Hope Community Garden)

For more information, contact Leslie Stafford - 617.849.6231
Join MPDC for another informational session on 84 Warren
Join MPDC for another informational session on 84 Warren!

WHEN: Wednesday, August 18th, 2021
6:30 pm to 8:00 pm

WHERE: On Zoom

For more information, contact Megan Reagon - 617.849.6329
Summer Rox Workout Series @
The Dewitt Center
Are you accepting the challenge? Have some summer fun with Summer Rox!

WHEN: July 6th - August 14th
Mondays, Wednesdays, & Fridays
2:00 - 4:00 pm

WHERE: Madison Park (located across from the Dewitt Center)

For more information, contact Tahara Samuel - 774.360.0712
Summer Movement Series @
Hibernian Hall!
VLA Dance is hosting their Summer Movement Series at Hibernian Hall!

WHEN: July 12 - August 11th
*Classes and class times may vary, please view for full schedule*

WHERE: Hibernian Hall

For more information, contact Victoria Awkward
Family Wellness Event
Join The Home for Little Wanderers and the Massachusetts Mental Health Department for a Family Wellness Event!

WHEN: Friday, August 20th
11 am-2 pm

WHERE: Union Capital Boston (located at 1544 Columbus Ave, Boston, MA)

For more info email call 617.780.5704.