Dear Margaret Fuller House Friends,
As we head into 2016, we have some terrific news: the Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House has a new Executive Director! Christina Alexis comes to us with more than a decade of experience in the non-profit world, and with a deep appreciation for the history of the House and its role in The Port.
Christina steps into the position following the retirement of Barbara Kibler, whose leadership brought the MFNH from troubled times to the flourishing organization it is today. The Board of Directors is indebted to Barbara for her years of hard work and dedication, and looks forward to building on her legacy, and strengthening the House even further, through Christina’s leadership.
In selecting Christina, the Board completed a rigorous three-month process involving a seven-person board committee, as well as input from staff and community members. With experience in both the non-profit world as well as the private sector, Christina stood out for her vision, her leadership skills, her creativity, and her commitment to making our historic settlement house the very best partner to The Port it can be.
Christina’s experience in both management and fundraising make her well suited to lead the MFNH. At Northeastern University, where she began her career, Christina opened a new Alumni Center, and built the foundation for a successful alumni program. Over the next decade, she served in increasingly senior level roles, contributing her expertise to community service and health and human service organizations, including City Year, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and Year Up. At the Dimock Center, where she served as Director of Development, External Relations, and Government Relations, Christina launched a multi-million dollar capital campaign.
The Board looks forward to formally introducing Christina to you, our community, in an event sometime this winter. In the meantime, please stop by and say hello. Christina’s first day as Executive Director is January 4. And with that, a new era at the historic Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House begins.
With all of our best wishes for a happy, healthy New Year – and many thanks, as always, for your support.
President of the Board
Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House
On Saturday September 12, neighbors, friends and family came together to celebrate the culture and diversity of the Port Community, as well as learn about various resources and services. People of all ages and backgrounds enjoyed the neighborhood cookout, music, arts & crafts, and amusements available. We especially loved the talented face painters and of course, the moon bounces and pony rides are always a hit!
Opening up the performances of the day, were the talented young people from the Community Art Center who graced us with their skills in dance. Our friends JG and the Meggatones played our favorite soul and R&B hits. Also performing was the Fred Woodward Collective, a group of truly amazing instrumentalists. Linda McClean from Pentecostal Tabernacle got the kids involved in the fun by pulling them all up on stage for a dance! Closing out the day was the Hip Hop Transformation Project, a group of Cambridge teens learning about the history and production of hip hop. They were a great group of energetic talent and we look forward to seeing where they go next!
The basketball tournament was, as always, a major highlight. Congratulations to this year’s winning teams!
The event was planned in partnership with Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House, MIT, the City of Cambridge Police Department, Cambridge Public Health Department, the City of Cambridge Department of Human Services, Port Action Group, Area 4 Coalition, the Community Art Center, and Pentecostal Tabernacle.
We want to give a shout-out to Jaclyn Rose of the Cambridge Police Department, who was crucial in coordinating with the Department, and to Matt Nelson of CPD, who served as grill-master in the hot sun all day long! A special thanks to the Cambridge Fire Department, as well as to Ducky Downs of Cambridge Public Works, who worked tirelessly in cleaning up the event. To all of our amazing volunteers from Cambridge Running Club, Lesley University and the community at large, a huge thank you for making this day happen!
We hope everyone has a great autumn and we look forward to all the fun events in our neighborhood to come!
On August 7th at the Clement Morgan Park, MetaMovements, in collaboration with the Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House, hosted “Salsa in the Park”.
MetaMovements is “an entrepreneurial artist collective dedicated to using the arts as a tool for positive transformation of self and community, creating bonds, fostering meaningful relationships and creating lasting social change.” Click here to learn more.
A free and popular outdoor summer series for all ages, backgrounds and abilities, Salsa In The Park is an innovative community engagement project that transforms public space for public benefit through music, dance and education. A public health initiative, featuring movement as a key to wellness, it draws over 500 people from all walks of life every Monday evening from 6pm to 9pm for salsa instruction (dance and percussion), high quality performances showcasing a variety of cultures and genres, social dancing and health and wellness promotion. MetaMovement’s weekly Salsa In The Park is held at South End’s Blackstone Community Center courtyard every summer.
The Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House has been fortunate enough to collaborate with MetaMovements, who taught dance lessons to Margaret Fuller House youth throughout the summer and helped us in hosting our very own Salsa in the Park! It was fantastic evening with a turnout of hundreds of folks of all ages. We want to thank MetaMovements and look forward to further collaboration with this wonderful organization.
Stayed tuned for updates on future events!
Over the course of 2 weeks, a group of aspiring leaders know as the Leaders in Training Crew over at the Margaret Fuller House planned, organized and hosted Margaret Fuller’s first ever teen party on July 23rd, 2015. With the help of Niah Carvalho, the assistant supervisor of the LITs, and Jenny Levine, the main supervisor of these leaders, they were able to raise nearly $800 at the famous “L.I.T Summer Bashment”. The LITs sold almost 100 tickets and had over 150 teens from all over Eastern Massachusetts paying to get in at the door to dance to the amazing mixes by Maxwell Elgart, also known as DJ Mad Max. They were also assisted by a few other counselors of the MFNH Summer Program staff with chaperoning. The bashment brought the teens of the community together in fun and turned out to be a booming success.
The reactions of the teenagers after the party were maybe the best part of it all. 15 year-old, Peterlee Dorlelan, said on the Facebook page for the event, “The party was a blast!” Karenah Harewood called it, “a LITuation” and said the “L.I.T crew did a great job.” Quincy West said, “this party was lit and it was a great turn up. You will be seeing me at the next one.”
So, why did the LITs throw this party anyways? Well, the young leaders were aspiring to go on many field trips to reward themselves for all the hard work they do around the MFNH such as working with the children in the summer program, cleaning the program and also assisting with all the major events of the organization. They wanted to be able to make money and have fun. Now that they’ve raised this money, they’re able to go on amazing trips and do amazing activities at places such as Laser Quest, Canobie Lake and maybe even Six Flags.
Written by Niah Carvalho