Data Dashboard Finds Sustenance in Community-led Data Workgroup

Risa Brudney
By Risa Brudney

When the Vital Village Network was being created, the strategic planning team envisioned a publically-shared data dashboard that showcased relevant benchmarks for child wellbeing and existed as a tool for community engagement.  Several months after launching the dashboard platform—Village Vital Signs—a community-driven workgroup began determining what data needs to be elevated by the dashboard and how that data should be collected, displayed, and accessed by the community. What’s more, this team worked on the ground, conducting outreach and brainstorming steps necessary to collect the relevant data and interpret it in a meaningful way. This workgroup came to fruition in the early fall of 2017, when a single interaction impacted one network member enough to catalyze new collaborations between community members and the process of data collection and analysis.

Continue reading ...

An Interview with Kymberly Byrd

Zoe Miller
By Zoe Miller

In this interview with former Vital Village staff member, Kymberly Byrd, we discuss asset-based partnerships, how the Vital Village philosophy has impacted her own life, and how she hopes to carry the work forward. 

Continue reading ...

It Takes a Village: Using Service Learning to Increase Breastfeeding Support in Boston

Morgan Brockington
By Morgan Brockington
 

At the beginning of the new year, the Boston Breastfeeding Coalition began to think about the best ways to make this model sustainable and what other training opportunities we could provide. We decided that another Reaching Our Sisters Everywhere (ROSE) training would be the perfect complement to the CLC training last summer. ROSE is an organization that was founded to address breastfeeding disparities to improve health equity among people of color nationwide through culturally competent training, education, advocacy, and support. With a focus on increasing breastfeeding initiation and duration rates, ROSE seeks to normalize breastfeeding by providing resources and networking opportunities for individuals and communities.

Continue reading ...

The Light

Zoe Miller and Tiara Murphy
By Zoe Miller and Tiara Murphy

This week, we are so excited to share an interview with the wonderful Tiara Murphy! We are so grateful to her for sharing her story with us, and with all of you.

Name: Tiara Murphy

Title: Mom, Early Education Specialist, Playgroup Coordinator

Organizations: Mattapan Family Engagement Network; JumpStart

Contact: tiara.murphy@bostonabcd.org

Continue reading ...

Community Advocacy: From Knowledge to Action

Kymberly Byrd
By Kymberly Byrd

“[My] spirit, body, and mind have been enlightened.” This quote captures the essence of Community Advocacy: From Knowledge to Action, a course that Vital Village Network piloted at Urban College of Boston in fall 2016. Over two years ago, the network began reflecting on a widespread inequity that exists in our community: community residents devoting hours of their free time to community transformation efforts but receiving no tangible benefits. Though service is an enriching experience, we wanted to identify more meaningful ways to contribute to their long-term personal and professional development. 

Continue reading ...