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Woburn Youth Council member delivered a speech at the Milford Youth Council kick-off press conference

Christine delivering speech to Milford Youth Council


“My fellow Youth Council members and I decided we wanted to address the issue of hunger in our area.  During a Youth Adult Connections (YAC) session we heard from the local food pantry director that their shelves get nearly bare in the summer time, when fewer groups are running food drives.  This seemed like a place we could step in and make difference.  We reached out to specific neighborhoods where we knew our peers could help us achieve success.  It was hard work to organize the drive, collect hundreds of cans and stock the pantry shelves, but it was great to come together with my fellow youth and the adults in the community to make a difference.  It was amazing to see so many people in the Woburn community play a role in addressing the problem of hunger.  Through our success I was able to understand how youth could not only solve an immediate problem, but influence social change among both our peers and adults.”

Our Youth Councils Prepare Students for the Future

Youth council member giving a presentation

One of our AmeriCorps members, Kevin McGravey, mentioned he'd been hearing several reports of former SCI Youth Council members who have attributed their success in college in part to the leadership experience they gained on the Youth Council. Sounds like this is an avenue we should think about for future impact evaluation. Meanwhile, this anecdote he relayed from a parent is compelling:

"My child was one of the first group of youth council members and just finished her second year of college. Her youth council experience gave her the skills she needed to succeed.Read more

SCI Brings Together Volunteers to Serve Lunches to Needy Children

Flier for Summer Lunch Program


One of our host site partners, the North Suburban YMCA, asked SCI if we could help recruit volunteers to serve lunches to needy children over the summer at a site close to a public housing development.  Without a strong base of volunteers, the free lunch program could not be made available during this time of need. Read more

SCI Leverages Community Talent to Make Dorchester a Better Place

"One thing in particular our team is proud of is the story of Cornelia, a volunteer here at the Codman Square Tech Center. When we began, one huge need we recognized in our center was the lack of an organized Computer class that taught skills surrounding Word and Excel as well as the teaching how to construct a Resume. Cornelia, a woman with a Masters in Computer Programing, looking to serve the community while gaining experience, was matched up with this need, and has begun teaching a Computer class at a minimal cost to Dorchester residents. She has been teaching a class for the past 4 weeks [as of the start of November, 2009], twice a week, and has a committed group of 12 students. Cornelia is an ideal volunteer and great teacher, and has invested hours of her time to help the Dorchester community, while learning valuable skills and experience for herself." - Scotland Huber

Laura Santel Delivered a Speech at the 2010 SCI Social Capitalist Luncheon

"Before I moved to Boston, I used to smile at people as I passed on the sidewalk. This was normal in my native St. Louis. I thought this was normal everywhere, but my simple gesture produced very strange reactions in my new home: a sudden fascination with foliage, trash, anything but eye contact; or an over-eager look that said, “Hey, baby, how you doing?” After a week, I gave up. After four years, I was ready to move back to a place where I felt people looked out for each other just a bit more.

So why am I still here?

Flash forward to a night just a few weeks ago. I am standing in an elementary school cafeteria – actually, standing is not the right word. I am surrounded by activity – I greet Zori’s mom and hand her a summer resource guide packet, congratulate first grader Jennixsa on the dance performance she has just completed, and check in to make sure the thirty organizations that have come to present information on summer programs have everything they need at their tables.Read more

It's Better to Give and Recieve

"One of the most satisfying experiences of this year was having the opportunity to connect Carol, a community member, with resources that enrich her life. Carol is a vivacious woman who is active with her local neighborhood association, Greater Four Corners, and she also volunteers her time to give free piano lessons to community members in the building where I serve.

Because she does so much for the Dorchester community, I was happy to be able to give back to her in some way. Lauren Anderson and I began a Spanish class in the community center where we serve with SCI because the center director had received requests from community members who wanted to learn Spanish to compete in the job market or to converse with their Spanish speaking friends. Carol was the first person to join the class and even though she struggled at the beginning, she’s become our best student, attending every single class. Through the class, Carol has learned to converse with her good friend Raymond, a native Spanish speaker, and she tells us that the class is the highlight of her day.Read more

Program highlights from 2008/09

OK, so no one likes reporting, do they? (if you do, please contact me for volunteer opportunities). Typically, when I hit "submit" as I did last night with about 4 hours to spare before the 11:59 p.m. deadline, I'm simply glad to be done and move on. But as I was working on our AmeriCorps final report for the 2008/09 year, I realized I needed to pause after getting it done and share some of the good stuff about what we accomplished.

Some of the facts: Read more

SCI Stories: Social Capital in Action


SCI's programming impacts lives in many ways, some of them immeasurable. We've compiled these short stories to demonstrate in words, rather than numbers, how building social capital can connect citizens and strengthen communities.


Giving a Voice to Immigrant Communities

"I’ve known since I began my service term at the Asian American Civic Association (AACA) that working with immigrant communities can be particularly challenging at times; for example, I often find that I need to start a few steps back when explaining concepts to my teens in order to provide them context so that they can achieve better understanding.Read more

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