Village Voices
Network members' voices bring good news and share highlights from
around our community. 
“It’s really crucial that we highlight Black joy...Sharing Black stories, sharing Black literature, sharing everything 365 days of the year and not just because it’s a trending topic or holiday.” - Brianna Perkins, founder, LIT for BLACK KIDS
What was at first an Instagram account has become an online repository, directory, and marketplace of books by Black authors about Black stories and experiences. “I want everyone to be able to see and look at the books and to be able to see a mirror of themselves,” Perkins told Boston 25 News.

Perkins is an early childhood educator and drew upon her own experience as a Black reader when she started LIT for BLACK KIDS because she remembered how difficult it was for her to find books that reflected herself and her experiences. “Only 40% of schools in Boston have a functional library and even if they do have a library, like my school, we do have a library, but it is very out of date, so to be able to bring books that are up to date and representative of our students are really important,” she explains. After the Instagram page reached massive success, Perkins partnered with Scholastic, Inc. for their Share Our Stories initiative in 2020, highlighting more than 80 books.

As her website has grown, so have Perkin's ambitions as she sets her sights on the LIT Mobile, a bookmobile that will act as a travelling library across Boston. As of 2021, the project has reached its funding goals and you can check for updates here.
Network Events
Connect with Vital Village Network at these upcoming events. Click
event to RSVP or learn more.
Monday, March 21st
5:30- 7:30PM Eastern
Please join us during the March Network Connection Meeting for a community conversation around Intergenerational Mental Health and exploration of how we in our communities and families can support and foster spaces for mental health and wellness. This meeting is co-hosted by Fields Corner Crossroads Collaborative, Vital CxNS, and We Got Us and will feature a youth and community led panel. 
Vital Village Networks is now recruiting AmeriCorps Vista Members!

The AmeriCorps VISTA service member would serve as one of three Community Mobilization Coordinators and partner with community stakeholders from schools, health centers, social service, legal advocacy, and community-based organizations.
The NOW 2022 Webinar Series “Levers of Change in Action: Unpacking the NOW Playbook”
Thursday, March 24, 2022
1:00-2:00pm Eastern
WEBINAR: Community Food Systems, Maternal Health and Justice 

Join us for the launch of our 2022 webinar series, where we’ll hear from community leaders and champions who are working to build equitable and resilient food systems at the intersection of maternal health and justice.

Featured speakers:
Tonni Oberly, MPH, CHES, CLC, Research Scholar, National Birth Equity Collaborative 
India Hinton, MS, CNS, LDN
Moderator: Ronda Alexander, Director of National Partnerships, Vital Village Networks 

Visit the NOW Innovation Forum today at:

NOTA: Hay una línea en español disponible para los participantes que deseen escuchar interpretación en vivo durante el seminario web.
Community Events
Join Vital Village Network partners and other community organizations at these upcoming events. Click event to RSVP or learn more.
April 4
10:30am - 2:00pm
Organized by the Union of Minority Neighborhoods, this is day where Black people and people of the African diaspora can discuss & advocate the needs of their communities with elected officials. This event will be held at the Massachusetts State House.
July 5th, 2022 - August 12th, 2022
10am - 4pm throughout the week
Youth will be signing-up to participate in a 6-week Summer program. Each Youth that is hired will be scheduled to work from 10am-4pm from Monday-Friday, for a total of 25 hours per week. Youth earn $14.25 per hour and are paid every two weeks throughout their employment experience. 

Applicants must be between the ages of 14 and 18, BPS students, available to work during the dates and times above, and must be legally permitted to work in the United States.

Apply here!

The Children's Trust invites professionals to submit proposals addressing a wide range of topics on child abuse and neglect prevention, parent education, and family support.

Seeking the following topics:
  • Preventing Staff Burnout
  • Fatherhood & Co-Parenting
  • Early Childhood Development
  • Working with LGBTQ+ Youth and Families
  • Family Engagement & Parent Group Facilitation
  • Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Cultural Humility
  • Supporting Families and Children with Special Needs

All applications are due by Thursday, April 14, 2022.

The Adult Education Program at MJE includes: Workforce Readiness workshops and career coaching; Health Equity & Community Wellness workshops, wellness coaching and resources, and referrals to community services. The point of contact is Vanessa Cordero and the application is available here.
In order to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on access to mental health services for children and families, Massachusetts policy makers requested a report highlighting family and youth voices and experiences with accessing mental health services in the Massachusetts Communities most impacted by the pandemic.
The Children's Mental Health Campaign will be holding a series of Listening Sessions to gather YOUTH and PARENT voices and experiences with accessing mental health services in the MA communities most impacted by the pandemic. Click HERE to learn more about this amazing opportunity to be heard!
Check out more community events on our Website and Facebook.

Check out job, volunteer, and grant opportunities available in our
The Family Mobility Program Coordinator will be primarily responsible for coordinating and supporting Family Mobility initiatives that move families towards economic independence (i.e., Job Readiness Workshops, parenting supports, coaching). This role requires a high level of autonomy, great attention to detail, and comfort with providing 1:1 support to parents and families in our community. Please reach out to Ella Zimbalist with any questions! 

As Family Outreach Coordinator, this person will work closely with the Youth Program Team and other key USES's talented team members. This position will be critical in strengthening USES's externally facing strategy, focusing on relationships and community-building with internal and external stakeholders. The Family Outreach Coordinator will report to the Director of Early Childhood Education and Out of School Time Programs. Please reach out to Ella Zimbalist with any questions! 

The Domestic Violence (DV) Advocate provides a range of domestic violence victim services to both patients and employees of Boston Medical Center, as well as consultation with those working to support victims and survivors of abuse. The Advocate participates in multi-disciplinary, cross-departmental case reviews, training, and other institutional initiatives to improve the health care and employer response to domestic violence. The DV Advocate works under the supervision of the Domestic Violence Program manager. See more here.

Under the guidance of the Program Manager and the support of the Community Engagement and Communications Director, this position works to improve equitable access to nutritious food with respect to affordability, physical accessibility, educational awareness, and cultural appropriateness. The Project Coordinator will provide training, communications, and support the Program Manager with outreach materials and outreach plan development. See more here!

The Employee Family Support Manager is a permanent position supporting resiliency in families of BPHC employees. The primary responsibilities include identifying, responding to, and following-up on needs among BPHC employees related to caregiving for dependents, including early education and care, before and after school programs, online learning supports, adult day programs, and personal care attendants. In addition to care coordination for specific employee families, the Manager will identify and implement innovative solutions to resolve barriers and increase employee family resiliency (examples: propose policy changes, coach supervisors, pilot programming for employees' dependents, research best practices). See more here!

The scope of work for this internship will include supporting two community initiatives - OFJ’s Community Grant program and the Boston Food Access Council Mayor’s Food Access Agenda. This position is ideal for someone interested in learning from community partners who do food access work across Boston. This intern will work closely with the Deputy Director of the Office of Food Justice but may be asked to contribute to other work in the office. See more here!

Leah Wing (Co-Founder of Social Justice Mediation Program/ UMass) is developing the Kapok app to improve efficiency and communication among medical responders working in disaster situations. Leah is looking to bring on a Program Manager (5-6 hrs per week) and a Mobile App Developer (5-10 hrs per week) who can help finalize and deploy the app.
Program Managers will lead a team of student developers and are required to have programming knowledge with Flutter and either Javascript, Java, Python, C or C++ Node.js.
Program Developers are required to have experience with Flutter and Dart; object-oriented programming languages; programming for Android or iOS; Firebase; and experience with remote data via REST and JSON.

If you are interested, please contact Leah Wing or for more info. 

Free "Inclusive and Ethical Leadership" Certificate Course
Self-Paced Course Find Out More Here!
This is a free course from the University of South Florida M3 Center on Inclusive and Ethical Leadership that features 40 TEDx style sessions (10-30mins) from 50+ experts. This is a self-paced, free course in which the participants can start any time and finish by December 31, 2022. To obtain more information and register for the course, please visit here.
Resource Connector
Learn more about resources relevant to children and families in our community from our community.
Resources to Tackle Tax Season and the Persistent Boston Cold:
COVID-19 Resources:
Learn more about COVID-19 Vaccines for Children Ages 5-11 access safety information and coming soon locations, hours, and website links for vaccinations.

Vital Village’s COVID-19 Resource Map regularly updated with descriptions, contact info, locations, hours, and website links for important basic family needs.

Protected Together sharing information safety information about vaccines

Find COVID-19 Testing Near You find your nearest testing site, including many with walk-in availability at Regular COVID-19 testing, both when sick and asymptomatic, can help prevent community spread of the virus, so we appreciate you taking advantage of these opportunities!
Connections and Healing:

Nursing License Map's 2022 Mental Health Resource List contains a comprehensive list of resources and tools for individuals and organizations regarding sleep, exercise, healthy eating, entertainment, mindfulness, and more.

Find your ideal therapist of color and boost your wellness journey with content written by and for people of color. 
For Children and Caregivers:

Boston Children’s Museum Sign-Up for Weekly Activity Emails to receive fun activities you can use to enrich and support children at home, as well as articles and podcasts.

Talking to Children About War by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network is a guide that will help you navigate these conversations, especially as the tragic news of the Russian invasion of Ukraine has broken before our very eyes.

Sitters for Scholars, our volunteers are prepared to provide high-quality babysitting in person for children while parents pursue their education. We are grateful for the opportunity to serve students and families. To maintain the safest environment, both sitters and parents will be required to be vaccinated and boosted, and all individuals, including children two years and up, will also be required to wear a mask. You can sign up here, or see more information here., is a family friendly website designed for parents of school-aged children in Massachusetts who are worried about their child’s mental health. Is your kid just being a kid, or is their behavior something to worry about? If so, what are the next steps you can take? HandHold will help you figure that out.

Scoop on the Stats
Explore data from across the United States
This month, the Mayor’s Office of Women’s Advancement and the City of Boston’s Economic Mobility Lab published the 2021 Childcare Report: Making Child Care Work. The Report highlights findings from the City of Boston’s 2021 Childcare Census, an annual survey of parents or guardians with children ages 0-5 intended to deepen understanding of the state of early education and care. 

Respondents indicated that they are using parent or guardian-based care more often than they prefer. 81% of those providing parents or guardian-based care for young children are women who often cited that the need to care for children interferes with their other career desires. Respondents strongly prefer formal care structures, especially early public education for children aged 3-5, over other arrangements such as parent-based, in-home, or neighbor/small group care, but have significant challenges accessing these services. 

Highly cited barriers include cost of center-based childcare, COVID-19 safety and closures, and limited availability. Costs for center-based care for preschoolers varied significantly by neighborhood, with the highest rates in Roxbury and Mattapan: 
Despite being a critical tool for family input in City policy around early childhood education, only 11% of households with children ages 0-5 completed the survey in 2021. The 2022 Childcare Survey is available now, and we invite you to complete it if you are a parent or guardian of children ages 0-5, or to share the survey with those who are eligible. The survey is available in multiple languages including English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Haitian Kreyol, Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese, and Cape Verdean Creole. No personally identifying information about the respondents or their children is collected, including names, addresses, immigration status, or employer.

Sharing Technology
Explore technology related to child and family well-being.
The UPDATED Abundance Boston Food Access App 3.0.2 is now available! Abundance empowers Boston residents to easily access affordable, high-quality food resources. Download the FREE app today!
The COVID-19 Resource Map now has updated addresses and hours of over 90 locations in Boston currently provide free breakfast, lunch or dinner for youth, and 10 free community fridges open to the public 24/7.
Too Good to Go is a mobile app where restaurants, groceries, and cafes can post discounted meals or "surprise bags" that may otherwise go to waste. People can reserve foods and rate the meals through the app. The goal is to address food waste, support local businesses, and to make sure everyone has access to high quality food. You can download the iOS version or the Android version.
CONtexts: Community Resources on Health & Nearby Fun Promotes positive outcomes for caregivers and children ages 0-5 by sharing resources through a FREE text service and interactive map.

Subscribe today! Text KIDS to 844-806-0616 to receive 3 free text messages on community resources, wellness, and events each week.
Seeking Community Voice!
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Community Voice/Voz de la Comunidad
We Did it Together!
Collective actions and investments.
Our Mission

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