The Boston Police Department Area "E" presented Sister Nancy the Community Service Recognition Award. BPD Deputy Supt Nora Baston and Mayor Marty Walsh presented the award . Several of our after-school students joined Sister Nancy in accepting the award.
The Casserly House community said farewell and thank you to our 2016-2017 Jesuit Volunteer Corps (JVC), Breda Bosch from Vancouver, Washington. Breda enjoyed teaching our Adult Literacy students so much so that she will be teaching English in China for a year, starting in September! Our after-school students appreciated her work with our Boston Police Department partners to provide wonderful after-school programs such as Stranger Danger and The Book Club. Breda boosted our social media presence and represented Casserly House well within the local community. Breda summed up her feelings "This place will forever be in my heart." We will miss Breda and we wish her well in her future endeavors!
Our neighborhood kids (and some adult morning students) took on the E-5 Police in another annual Cops vs. Kids softball game! Everyone loved being outside and enjoying each other's company. Afterwards we shared in a barbecue put on by the police. What a wonderful day!
That's a wrap for the 2017 Casserly House Summer Camp! This year's theme was "The Ocean" and for the past two weeks our children have been reading, crafting, and learning about all things that live in the ocean!
We took two trips, one to the tide pools at the Seacoast Science Center in Rye, NH, and the other to Georges Island in the Boston Harbor Islands. The kids had a blast and learned so much!
Casserly House has been awarded a grant by Suffolk County District Attorney Dan Conley's office for our continued efforts in "keeping Suffolk County youth away from drugs, violence, and negative choices." This was the seventh year we have been awarded a grant, and we truly value the ongoing partnership with the DA's office. The grant will help us maintain and enhance our after-school program and summer educational camp. Here is the DA press release:
Sunday was a great day to celebrate another year at Casserly House! We are grateful for all the neighbors, friends, and family who joined us at our annual Driveway Picnic. The afternoon was filled with food, games, face painting, raffle, certificates, laughter, and lots of love!
Former Jesuit Volunteer Corps members (FJV's) at Casserly House returned to share memories with Sister Nancy of their life-changing experiences with the friends they met at Casserly House. Those who were able to attend included: Sarah (2008), Heather (2009), Jeff (2013), Anna (2015), and current JV Breda. Binta and three of her children stopped by to thank the JV's who had welcomed them unconditionally to this country!
After recently completing her junior year at Gonzaga University (Washington), Breda's sister Molly paid us a visit. In true Zag spirit, Molly scored a 3-pointer: she taught two adult classes, she tutored our after-school kids, and she welcomed the opportunity to experience the joy Breda has felt this year!
Today, we were able to spend another incredible morning at the Massachusetts State House for their annual Immigrants' Day event. We heard from political leaders in the state who enforced the dreams of MIRA and the Safe Communities Act to make Massachusetts the first Sanctuary State. After spending some time in Representative Liz Malia's office, one of our own students was interviewed by MIRA.
For the ninth consecutive year the Highland Street Foundation has awarded a grant to Casserly House. We would like to recognize and thank Holly and David Bruce of the Highland Street Foundation for making this donation possible. We are so appreciative of the ongoing support Highland Street Foundation has shown!
Casserly House After-School girls celebrated Valentine's Day with the annual Tea Party. Police Officers Nora and Nicole helped host the event. The young girls were able to share in conversations about being a girl, confidence, and what they dream of for their furtures over cups of tea!
Yesterday two members of the STEAM Club from the Archdale Community Center, Junie and Hector, stopped by After-School. Each kid was able to make a vinyl sticker from an image of their choice with a machine brought by the club members. They also got to make pipe-cleaner ninjas. What a fun afternoon!
A former Casserly House student and Buddhist monk, Thai, gave our morning students a tour of the Vietnamese Temple in Roslindale. Everyone had a great time sharing in the culture and celebrating the Chinese New Year!
Police Officers Nora and Nicole came to Casserly House to host the first book club of 2017. The kids had a great time reading the Magic Tree House series!
We had another very productive board meeting where we continued the process of developing a 5-year plan and succession plan. Casserly House is planned to continue to function with its existing leadership/staffing structure (Director, Jesuit Volunteer Corps, Ignatian Volunteer Corps, and volunteer teachers). It is felt that this structure will be sustainable and that it will support continuation of our mission and objectives. The role and responsibilities of the Director of Casserly House were discussed, with a view toward developing and implementing an effective succession plan.
Our After-School students were able to celebrate Christmas together at our annual prayer gathering. Jingle bells and song filled the house, and Santa came to visit everyone at the party!
Our adult students shared in a Christmas gathering of peace, joy and love. We celebrated with arts & crafts, song, and delicious native foods. Santa stopped by to join the fun!
We were so grateful to be once again invited to the MIRA (Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition) Thanksgiving Luncheon. A group of our morning students enjoyed a traditional Thanksgiving meal for lunch in the Massachusetts State House, and listened to stories shared on immigration.
Students from Fontbonne Academy visited Casserly House this morning on their annual "Ducks in Service Day." The adult students all enjoyed lessons taught on money! We are grateful to be included in this service day for Fontbonne juniors!
Once again Regis College hosted a successful Halloween party this year! Our After-School kids and a few morning adult students were able to enjoy games, dancing, crafts and a lot of candy at the college campus the Friday before Halloween.