City employees fanned out in Roxbury this past weekend in a successful effort to connect children and youth with summer camps and beneficial summer job programs, all part of Mayor Thomas M. Menino’s comprehensive, proactive violence prevention strategy for Summer 2013.
“The best way we can promote the many things the City has to offer this summer is to be visible in the neighborhoods, talking directly to the residents,” Mayor Menino said. “My summer safety teams are out there, in the community. We will be more proactive, more visible, and more available to the public than ever before.”
This Mayor-directed cross-city collaboration, the strategy emphasizes “more”: more outreach, more engagement, more officers, more collaboration and more technology. There were more than 65 volunteers from nine different City agencies involved in the outreach. The volunteers went door to door in Charlame, Charlame 2, and St Joseph’s housing communities, inviting residents to one of three free barbeques and resource fairs in their neighborhoods
This past weekend in Roxbury, volunteers went go door to door inviting community members to one of three free barbeques and resource fairs in their neighborhoods. They also successfully signed up more than 67 young people for summer programs and job referrals.
“We know that one way to address the usual spike in summer violence is to make sure children and older youth have access to resources like camps and summer jobs,” said Dr. Barbara Ferrer, Ddirector of the Boston Public Health Commission. “We’re so pleased about the success of this weekend, and we look forward to connecting with more families throughout this summer.”
The door knocking and outreach sessions were followed by three community BBQ’s throughout Roxbury. The weekend programming also brought out partners from College Bound, The Institute for Pan African Cultural Education (PACE), and the Yawkey Boys and Girls Club of Boston, offering their own programs and resources.
“The opportunity to engage residents in this way ensures a safe and healthy summer,” said Daphne Griffin, executive director of Boston Centers for Youth and Families, which provided Fit Kits and a variety of sports equipment for the events.
The City volunteers successfully connected with every apartment unit in three public housing developments including two developments of the Charlame Park Homes and at St. Joseph’s Housing. Boston Police provided its ice cream truck, which gave out free Hoodsie Cups. There was also a magician and DJ at each site, hula hooping, football, and free t-shirts provided.