Civics

Civic umbrella group surveying associations

The Boston Civic Summit Neighborhood Exchange Team, an outgrowth of last year's Civic Summit hosted by City Councillor Maureen Feeney and convention center head James Rooney, is gathering basic information on neighborhood civic associations with a new online survey.

The group hopes to use the information to create an exchange of ideas and best practices between the many civic groups. The current survey gathers basic information about the size, communication tactics and contact information of the civics Those interested in participating can find the survey at roslindale.us/civicsummit.

Getting teens involved

Cassandra Cato Louis Marshall, youth coordinator for the Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition discusses getting teens involved in conducting surveys on improving conditions for pedestrians and bicyclists in Mattapan and Dorchester.

Hope on a Mattapan street corner

mattapan library dedication: Mayor Tom Menino, flanked by State Rep. Willie Mae Allen, left, and City Councillor Charles Yancey, cuts the ribbon at the new Mattapan Branch Library on Feb. 28, 2009.Mattapan library dedication: Mayor Tom Menino, flanked by State Rep. Willie Mae Allen, left, and City Councillor Charles Yancey, cuts the ribbon at the new Mattapan Branch Library on Feb. 28, 2009.Last Saturday's official opening of the new Mattapan branch library was a feel-good event, something that's increasingly hard to come by at this moment in time. The malaise of a deepening national recession - and the spectre of further job cuts here on the homefront - do not exactly a party atmosphere make.

Yet, there was a buoyancy to the spirit in this spectacular new building that could have been interpreted by some as hope. Hope that even in the uncertain days that are surely to come, we can lean on a sturdy foundation of neighbors and history to pull us through the toughest of times.

Mayor Tom Menino - who presided over much of Saturday's festivities - can take great pride in the facility that his administration has brought to this corner of the city. It is clearly now the finest public indoor space of its kind within the neighborhoods south of the city center and his administration finally brought it into being.  Read more

She says 'soul' helps leaders in crisis

Margaret BenefielMargaret BenefielThe lessons of the still-unraveling economic crash will likely take economists and social scientists years to deconstruct. Dorchester's Margaret Benefiel, however, thinks the root cause can be summed up rather simply: Short-sighted, selfish greed. In a word, soullessness.  Read more

'Unsung hereos' share spotlight

Two honored as Dorchester Neighborhood Fellows: Desire runs Dorchester's Association of Haitian Women in Boston, while Grey is a Dorchester resident who directs the city's trauma response unit. Photo courtesy TPITwo honored as Dorchester Neighborhood Fellows: Photo courtesy TPI

Two neighborhood people were hailed as "social entrepreneurs" in an awards banquet held on Monday evening in the South End. Courtney Grey, a Dorchester resident who directs the city's trauma response efforts, and Haitian-American activist Carline Desire each received $30,000 prizes as part of the recognition from The Philanthropic Initiative (TPI), which hosted the 19th annual Neighborhood Fellows event.  Read more

Families get tax season help, financial tips in Codman Square

Tax help: Sheila McMillan of Dorchester (left) was among a group of residents who received free help Monday night in filing her federal and state taxes at the Dotwell site at 450 Washington Street in Codman Square. Pictured with her are (l-r): Doreen Treacy, Director Dotwell Civichealth Institute, and Mt Washington Bank officers Marc Lerebours, Assistant Branch Manager, and Oscar Moreno, Assistant VP and Branch Manager. Photo by Ed Forry.Tax help: Sheila McMillan of Dorchester (left) was among a group of residents who received free help Monday night in filing her federal and state taxes at the Dotwell site at 450 Washington Street in Codman Square. Pictured with her are (l-r): Doreen Treacy, Director Dotwell Civichealth Institute, and Mt Washington Bank officers Marc Lerebours, Assistant Branch Manager, and Oscar Moreno, Assistant VP and Branch Manager. Photo by Ed Forry.

Business was bustling Monday night at the new Codman Square home of the Dotwell Civic Health Institute.  Read more

Updated teen center re-opens at St. Peter's

Cardinal Sean O'Malley greeted young people in the newly renovated St. Peter's Teen Center: Photo courtesy Catholic Charities.Cardinal Sean O'Malley greeted young people in the newly renovated St. Peter's Teen Center: Photo courtesy Catholic Charities.

Former Celtic legend M.L. Carr stood beneath one of the new baskets. Afternoon light shined through the new windows, glistening on the hardwood at the renovated Teen Center at St. Peter's. The scent of fresh polish on the floor wafted through the gym.  Read more

Her handmade jewelry helps build homes for Haiti's poor

Dr. Jerry Lowney, CEO of the Haitian Health Foundation and Ruth Adomunes last Sunday in Adams Corner: Photo by Harry Brett.Dr. Jerry Lowney, CEO of the Haitian Health Foundation and Ruth Adomunes last Sunday in Adams Corner: Photo by Harry Brett.

Almost three years ago, Beth Israel-Deaconess Medical Center nurse Ruth Adomunes decided to design and make some jewelry to satisfy her creative impulses. Looking around for materials, she fashioned several pairs of bracelets, creating bright, colorful designs that match her outgoing personality.  Read more

Taxed by demand, many food pantries are looking to innovate

Volunteers work to pack supplies at the Greater Boston Food BankVolunteers work to pack supplies at the Greater Boston Food Bank  Read more

Cops, friends reviving teen center

For the last eight years, the basement of a Franklin Field apartment block that once served as a safe haven for teens and kids had been collecting water, mold and dust - a victim of federal budget cuts that decimated public housing programs. This week, the rooms beneath 70 Ames St. have a fresh coat of paint and an injection of Boston Police Department sweat equity.  Read more