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April 2023

Ed Caisse

April 13 2023

Virutal Networking Meeting

Holyoke Safe Neighborhood Initiative
Meeting Notes

Date: April 13, 2023
Time: 1:00pm to 2:30pm
Place: Zoom Meeting

Mission Statement: The Holyoke Safe Neighborhood Initiative is a partnership between local, state & federal law enforcement; city & state government; civic & human service organizations; faith based organizations; the business community; education providers; property managers; and residents coming together with a goal to create safe, healthy & economically viable neighborhoods through information sharing, identifying at-risk youth, referrals and community efforts in specific Holyoke neighborhoods.

Welcome & Introduction 1:00pm - 1:05pm

Ed Caisse: Holyoke Hub 1:05pm - 1:20pm
Ed gave an overview of the Holyoke Hub and encouraged agencies that have resources that match our risk factors to consider joing the Hub. Below are two videos that Ed showed during the meeting, as well as a list of the risk factors we have experienced so far.

General video:

The Hub process:

Agency Overview and Updates 1:25pm - 2:25pm

Jason Comcowhich: Nuestras Raices
Good afternoon, I’m Jason Comcowhich the Terra Corps Community Engagement Coordinator with Nuestras Raices. We are collecting soil samples from around the community for a project we are doing. If anyone wants to come out and help us collect the samples it would make the process go faster. We are also going to take some time to do some talks about pollution at some of our sites. I am presenting on different things that benefit plants and humans and things that hurt us. My colleagues are presenting on legacy spots in Holyoke and how contaminants spread to other sites. Another collaborator is teaching about the Connecticut water shed more broadly. We also have another colleague who is going to teach generally on soil science. We are going to be ending at the farm, La Finca- we will be moving to different sites. I sent a link to the Facebook post for that in the chat. Thank you.

Rosalee Williams: Ward 2 School Committee
I don’t have much to say, but I will get in contact with you, Ed, so I can get into the Holyoke Hub. I just want to say to everyone that is listening, if I can do anything as far as monetary donations do not hesitate to call on me. Ed, you have my email address so you can give it out if you want to.

Yvonne Lomax: Westover Job Corps
Good afternoon, Yvonne Lomax, Outreach Manager here at the Westover Job Corps. It is lovely to be here and to hear all of the great things that are going on. Ed I am going to definitely pass Karen Legace’s information to my CT Team Manager, which you know we have 13 trades that could rotate that Friday night and it would be wonderful for our young people to get out there and showcase what we do here at Westover. We are open for tours in-person Wednesday at 10 o’clock by confirmation. We are taking appointments for orientation interviews on campus, at mass hires, anywhere that young people are the community. We can meet at McDonald’s, Dunkin Donuts, and we are certainly open to assist with any community service as the weather gets nice and the need grows in the community. We are here, so please don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ms. Lomax at Westover Job Corps. Thank you Ed and everyone else.

Yadaris Rivera: Holyoke Housing Authority
Hi, all I have is our home buying classes. We have an upcoming class on May 9th, 10th, 23rd and 24th. People can register online.

Judge William Hadley: Holyoke District Court
Hi Ed, I just want to thank everyone for all that you are doing. Good news, we just secured funding so we will be able to continue to have a recovery coach in our courtroom in the Holyoke District Court every day. Those coaches are taking people, it is all voluntary, the walk them down to clinics for medication, getting them residential placements on their first court appearance often. We have secured the funding and that should be able to continue for at least a couple more years. Three weeks ago we had our latest meeting after a long Covid-enforced break of our court community advisory committee. We had about 32 different people from the police to hospitals to schools. We are trying to get input from anybody who has ideas or suggestions on how we can better help people successfully complete probation, get help with substance use disorders, and mental health issues. Anyone who did not get an invitation to that meeting just email me, I will put my email in the chat, and we can add you to the distribution list. We are just trying to make sure that this is a true community court- that we get input, suggestions, and how we can help people succeed better with your help. That’s about it, thank you.

Emmanuel Reyes: United Way of Pioneer Valley
Hello everybody, thank you for having me Ed, it is always a pleasure. I am from the United Way of Pioneer Valley. We have a lot of exciting things going on here at all times. I just wanted to let you guys know that we are battling food insecurity constantly at the United Way of Pioneer Valley. We have a food pantry in Chicopee, Springfield and Holyoke- at 206 Maple Street right next to the bus station. We are open there every Thursday from 11 AM to 1 PM. Anybody can come, all you have to do is fill out some paperwork that we have, but you do not have to provide any sort of income verification or any strong documentation. I also wanted to let you guys know that we are also offering financial wellness classes now. So if you have a group of students who would like to learn about financial wellness- we talk about budgeting, smart banking, savings, and credit in detail. We also have a free legal kiosk right here in our headquarters which is at 1441 Main Street. We have this legal kiosk for the purpose of having people come in and utilize it to browse for any potential legal resources that they may be looking for or if they have a court date they can come here and attend it through Zoom. We also have volunteer opportunities, so if you have a group of people that would like to volunteer you can reach out to me and we can set that up. Thank you so much Ed for having me, it has been a pleasure. Have a good day everybody.

Sean McBride: Holyoke District Court
Good afternoon everybody, good afternoon Ed. Sean McBride, chief probation officer here in the Holyoke District Court. Nothing additional to report other than what Judge Hadley had reported to you on the work that the recovery coaches are doing here in Holyoke.

Sandy Ward: Holyoke Public Library/Funeral Consumers Alliance of Western Mass
Thanks Ed, I am promoting the mini golf and games at the library for April 29th. I hope people will come out and have fun with this. We still have room for some sponsors, if you’d like to sponsor a hole and add some advertisements for your agency in a form of obstacles that add to the fun. There is also an outside game of foosball for adults that would be a team effort if you want to challenge another agency to meet them out there on the court, there are going to be games outside the library. I have put in the chat under my name the url that gets you into the library webpage where you can volunteer, you could sponsor, or you could just learn more about coming and having fun. It’s a FUNraiser even more than a FUNDraiser. We can take help in many different ways on it. So, thank you very much.

Rosalyn Rodriguez: YWCA Holyoke Teen Parenting Program
Hi, I am Rosalyn Rodriguez from the YWCA Holyoke Teen Parenting Program. I don’t have anything new to report, I am just happy to be here with you guys.

Rafael Santos Jr.: Hampshire County Sheriff’s Office
Hi good afternoon everyone, my name is Rafael from the Hampshire Sheriff’s Office. I am really looking forward to connecting with everyone here moving forward. We have several individuals who relocate to the Holyoke area housed in our facility.

Nolan Teixeira: Eagle Eye Institute
Hello everyone, my name is Nolan, I use he/him pronouns. I work for an organization in Holyoke called Eagle Eye Institute. The purpose of our organization is to get young people outdoors and in nature, particularly young people from the city who don’t have a lot of experience or access to nature. We offer programs to youth serving organizations, different schools, for youth to come out to the forest for a day and just get introduced to it. We also talk about the barriers to outdoor access and things like that. I did put in the chat, the biggest thing I want to share is we are recruiting for our summer internships. We have 4 total positions, they are all paid positions. Two of the positions are part time in-person in Peru, Massachusetts, which is about an hour drive from Holyoke, and that is land management and taking care of the land that we have in Peru for our programs. The other two positions are full time program assistants essentially. They would work alongside me to develop and implement these programs in Holyoke. I understand that transportation is a big challenge for a lot of young people. These internships are designed for 18 years plus people. If you know of anyone interested you can send me an email and we can work to see if there are ways to work around transportation issues. That is it, thank you.

Melissa McCarthy: Women’s Money Matters
Thank you so much for having me and Ed I want to just say congratulations and what a wonderful opportunity for so many people. I am currently in a social work program and this is something we talk about on a daily basis, so thank you for having me and letting me experience this awesome opportunity. I would love to tell you about our organization, it is called Women’s Money Matters. We are a women’s focused financial literacy program that works on supporting women with creating budgets, establishing positive relationships with money, and allowing them to have the opportunity for follow up with resources. We do have a wrap-around model continuation that goes on to an app for those who have graduated from our programs. They provide resources like housing, we actually use the listserv from Holyoke for some of our opportunities that we will post up on there. I would welcome anyone here that would love to share your upcoming events or opportunities with us that we can place on the platform and offer participants opportunities to volunteer or be part of things that you have coming up that are needed. Currently we are using coaches that are volunteers through the entire state of Massachusetts and spreading on a daily basis. We are going to be launching a program in North Adams, so we are looking for volunteers in the North Adams area and also Salem and Nashua, New Hampshire. I know that Nashua is outside of Massachusetts but we are on the border so we can give them a little bit of support as well. I am also a graduate of the program and I can attest to the fact that it has been successful and there are wonderful opportunities in being able to support women who are struggling with low income and really looking for that added support source. Thank you.

Marissa Chiapperino: Holyoke Medical Center
Hi everybody, I am Marissa Chiapperino, registered dietician at Holyoke Medical Center. In the months of May, June, and August we are going to be offering a free 3-part diabetes series for the community at Holyoke YMCA. I will include the flyer for that in the chat. It is open to anyone and everyone with or without diabetes or someone who care for someone with the condition. Each class will be held by a different clinical professional, so we will have a nurse, a dietician, and a pharmacist. Thank you.

Lani Ortiz: DIAL.SELF AmeriCorps
Good afternoon everyone, my name is Lani, I use she/her pronouns. I am with the DIAL/SELF AmeriCorps program as the community coordinator. Currently we are recruiting for our 2023 to 2024 service term. Members need to be 18 plus, have a high school diploma, and be a U.S. citizen. This opportunity is a 10 month program full time where members serve in the community to support youth. During their time of supporting youth they are gaining personal and professional development, they are making community connections, they are doing a whole bunch of different things, and they are given a compensation package of around $24,000 with an education award included. They do receive different benefits may that be SNAP, free healthcare, different things like that. Members can serve within the Franklin county, Hampshire county, and Hampden county. We are really looking for members all throughout the Pioneer Valley. Thank you Ed.

Kate Pousont Scarborough: Food Bank of Western Massachusetts
Hi everyone, I am Kate Pousont Scarborough, I am with the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. Happy to be here with you today. Just a couple of things, if you have a food pantry or meal site or a shelter and you are looking for some more support with food sources we would love to partner with you and talk about membership. Feel free to reach out to me if you have a program like that or if you know someone who is offering a program and is looking for more sources of food for that. Also our advocacy team here is busy working on some public policy priorities and we are doing a postcard program specifically to ask for more MEFAP funding. MEFAP is the Massachusetts Emergency Food Assistance Program and it is a big source of the food that we are able to put out into the community and so we are sending postcards around to agencies and asking folks to fill those out and get them back to us. I will put my contact info in the chat. Again, if you are interested in that let me know. We need the postcards back by May 5th so we have a little bit of time still. Thanks everyone.

Rondey Allen: CrossPoint Clinical Services
I am executive director of CrossPoint Clinical Services. We specialize in outpatient mental health and we also have health and wellness services. We specifically try to serve a niche of Christian faith based counseling and one of the ways that we do that is by reaching out directly to pastors. Pastors, as you know, are kind of the first line of intervention for many people in the faith based community. Also you may know that sometimes they have limited counseling training in their pastoral programs and sometimes the situations that come their way they are very heavy. We really try to reach out to them to help coach and consult in different situations and also to be a referral to us if they find that the situation is deeper and longer than they thought it was going to be. One of the ways that we do that is by doing something called a pastor’s luncheon about once a quarter now that we are past COVID. We just host them for lunch and we teach them about something relevant to mental health. Actually we have one coming up next week on Thursday the 20th, 11:30 to 1. This time we are going to talk about rhythms of ministry and talk about self-care to teach pastors and churches leaders how to take care of themselves. So, if you know somebody who belongs to a faith community please send them our way. We love to just host them, take care of them, form a relationship with them, give them a lunch, and train them on something that we hope will make their work a little easier and more sustainable. Thank you, I will put the information for our event in the chat and Ed can send it out in the flyer.

John McCarthy: USCIS Citizenship and Immigration Services
I have a couple of points of information. Number one, I put my contact information in the chat for anyone who would like to get in touch with me, you can get that information in the chat. I am the community relations officer for USCIS Citizenship and Immigration Services out of the Boston office. My function is to provide information to individuals who have an interest in applying for immigration benefits with USCIS. I provide for them the eligibility requirements and we will go through that with them and also the process that they will need to go through to obtain those benefits, so that is my function. A couple of pieces of information that would be of interest perhaps to the people on the call is number one, during the last week USCIS put out a webinar of its intent for its upcoming grant this year. It puts on a citizenship grant each year, the NOFO, the notice of funding opportunity usually starts sometime in the late spring or during early summer. The decision is made on the grant in September of the year. Last year they doubled the size of the grant to 20 million dollars. This year they increased it by 5 million dollars, so it is 25 million dollars that is being offered. It is being offered for citizenship programs and it is particularly guided to immigrants who are eligible for naturalization and to assist them to reach their goal and become citizens in the United States. Second thing I have is that typically our agency puts on stakeholder meetings and will be putting a stakeholder meeting on on the second of May. That is usually for agencies that are either accredited agencies with the Department of Justice and provide assistance to immigrants or its refugee relocation agencies that assist refugee and asylees entering into the United States. The final thing is that we have a long term agreement with the Boston Public Library and we put on information programs through the Boston Public Library. I encourage you to take a look on their site, we should have a program coming up on the 28th of the month. I believe it is on naturalization, but it could be on TPS. Thank you, that’s all.

Jessica Gilmore: Hampden County Superior Court
Hi everyone, Jessica Gilmore, probation officer at Hampden Superior Court. I have nothing to share today, thank you.

Joanne Gilman: MSPCC/ Eliot Community Services
Hi, today I would like to talk about the survivor’s services program as a representative of MSPCC and Eliot Community Human Services. This is a free and confidential service for individuals, families, and for the community to promote the recognition and understanding of the recovery of the impact from trauma victimization. The main shift that is important to know is that we are viewing people as being survivors rather than victims as our model of care. We are flexible and adaptable, individualized, strength-based, culturally competent, and trauma informed. It is also important to know that this particular program is funded by VOCA, Victims of Crimes Act, so that the clients do not have to use their insurance in order to have our services. I have put the information into the chat with my name, Joanne Gilman, and my phone number. We are looking forward to having more clients that are referred to us. Thank you.

Iris Sosa: Boy Scouts of America Western Massachusetts
Hello everyone, I am Iris Sosa, I work for the Boy Scout of America Western Massachusetts Council. We have different programs, we have Cub Scouts from Kindergarten to fifth grade, Scouts BSA is 11 years old and up. We have the Exploring program that is career oriented and we are always looking for partnerships with different organizations. There is different ways we can have scouting programs, we can create what are called traditional units, we can do after school programs, and partnership with different organizations can be part of the program. We have one outdoor activity once a month in the scout reservation. This coming Saturday is one of them, I put the link in the chat so everybody can come and enjoy this nice weather. I also put the link in the chat for summer camp staff, we are looking for staff to be part of our summer camp program in the month of July. That’s it, thank you.

Sarah Colby: Hope for Holyoke
Hello everybody, my name is Sarah Colby, I am with Hope for Holyoke. We are a peer-run recovery center in Holyoke. We are open, we are going to be moving to a new facility right down the street in the month of May. We are excited and encourage anyone who has any clients who need support in recovery please feel free to send them our way. We are all pathways recovery center and we are here, if we don’t have the supports for the individual we can certainly do our best to network them and get them all the services that they might need at that time. We can also get them into residential programs, detoxes, we have peer-run groups hourly. We do a lot of events, we are having our 7th annual Hopey Awards ceremony on April 28th. That is our community recognition, we give out actual beautiful trophies and acknowledge our members and peer leaders. Our members are also allowed and encouraged to do member orientation. We have volunteer opportunities and we also have stipend positions for the members and it is just a wonderful center. I started as a member and we strive to encourage hope and change people’s lives for the better. Thank you.

Gloria Penagos: Holyoke Community College
Thank you Ed, I am Gloria Penagos, I work for development at Holyoke Community College. We are offering free job trainings, line cook, hotel, and Nurse Aid. The new one this summer will be the culinary and hospitality for English for Speakers of Other Languages. We encourage anyone you may know who has difficulty with English to come to this program. It will offer more support for this difficult language. The other thing will be for the line cook that starts May 23rd, we are emphasizing this program for seniors that will finish school this year but who are not planning to move on to college yet. We can offer them this training and get the involved with the job, if it is not MGM it will be another restaurant as soon as they finish the training. Another important thing is we are having an open house of the Culinary Arts Institute. We are located at 164 Race Street in Holyoke. This will be an opportunity to see the amazing building and beautiful kitchens that we have, but most importantly the good food that our students prepare. That will be on April 20th, 5 to 7 PM. I will share the information with Ed later and he can send it out to you. Thank you Ed.

Francheska Bermudez: Public Health Institute of Western Mass
Hi everyone, my name is Francheska, I work at the Public Health Institute of Western Mass. I manage the 413 cares platform along with some other colleagues. 413 cares is a resource database for those who don’t know or have not been on the site. It is a place where individuals in our community or even the organizations can go on and look for resources that are listed that are free or low-cost. For organizations, you can see if your programs and services are on there. Everything on there is crowd sourced by the Fine Help tech company. We are currently holding 2 office hour dates for folks to hop in and ask questions, if you have issues with seeing your program on there, and information is incorrect or if you would want to claim it to make sure that information is correct, feel free to come to the office hours as well. I will put it in the chat. Something else that I would like to mention is that at the Public Health Institute we have our healthy air network. We are currently looking to present at community organizations in Springfield and Holyoke to talk about the connection between air quality and its impact on health. Springfield and Holyoke have really high rates of asthma among others such as COPD, allergies, and things like that. I believe Springfield has been the asthma capital for the past couple of years, not so much now but we still have high rates of asthma. We have over 60 air quality sensors around Springfield, Holyoke, and Chicopee. We are looking to expand but we just want to present to organizations, to communities, to students, so we are currently wanting to schedule that. I am going to put all the information in the chat. We have a Google Form for those that want to schedule a presentation and you can also email me directly. Thank you.

Elizabeth Veillette: CHD Diversion Shelter and Housing
Hi everyone, my name is Elizabeth Veillette, I am the Employment Specialist Navigator for CHD’s Diversion Shelter and Housing division. We have over 300 families in shelter right now between the shelters and the overflow hotels. My job is to help adults and older teenagers to obtain training and employment with the goal of self-sufficiency. The navigator part of my title means that I help them meet the barriers that are standing in the way of self-sufficiency. I don’t have anything else to report today but I am thrilled to hear about the other programs, thank you.

Corrine Ryan: Community Legal Aid
Hi again everyone, Corrine from Community Legal Aid or CLA. No real updates but just a reminder we are the free civil legal aid provider for the 5 counties of Central and Western Mass, so everything west of Worcester. Springfield is one of our largest offices, we have about 50 folks here. We handle the full range of civil legal issues, so housing, eviction defense, subsidized housing, fair housing, shelter access. We have a family law unit for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. We have benefit units that help folks with income maximization, so state benefits, federal disability benefits, unemployment. We have an education law unit that helps kids in school, so we got to IEP meetings, help get access to special ed services, we help at suspension or expulsion hearings to prevent disproportion or illegal discipline, we do language access issues in school, so right to interpretation at meetings for parents so they can participate in their child’s education. We have an elder law unit for folks above 60, so we can help with nursing home issues, elder abuse issues, and there is no income or asset cap for elders so anyone above 60 we are not looking at the income or assets so that is a nice way in the door as well. We have special projects that help various folks, we have a veterans unit that can do things like character of service determinations, discharge status issues. We have a CORI re-entry unit that Ed is helping us get off the ground as well as the folks from AISS, so helping with CORI sealing and expungement, loss of public or subsidized housing, denied employment or participation in job training or certification programs because of that prior status. We also have a civil legal aid for victims of crime unit, so helping folks with things like identity theft, and we have an immigration law unit for mostly humanitarian based immigration relief, so a vow of petitions for DV survivors, U visas for crime victims, T visas for trafficking victims, and that is housed in our subsidiary which is the central west justice center. So my intake information is in the chat, feel free to send us cases, if you have questions reach directly out to me. I will put my direct number and email in the chat and we can hopefully help some of the folks that you service as well. Thanks.

Elena Woodworth: Nuestras Raices
My name is Elena, I am the sustainable agriculture coordinator at Nuestras Raices. I am also an AmeriCorps member and most of my work is done at La Finca which is at 24 Jones Ferry Road in Holyoke. We have a few programs going on there, we have a farmer training program which is a series of workshops that happen every month for beginner and socially disadvantaged farmers. Our second workshop in the series will be taking place on April 22nd, next Saturday, from 10 to 11:30 AM. We will also be accepting volunteers at the farm starting in May on Mondays and Thursdays and Saturday mornings on the first Saturday of every month. Thanks.

Cinnamon Smith: Westover Job Corps
Hello everyone, thank you for having me. I just want to introduce myself, my name is Cinnamon Smith and I am the new Business Engagement Specialist at Westover Job Corps. I work out here with Ms. Lomax. I am taking the position of Business Community Liaison that Walter Rice held, so some big shoes to fill. I appreciate being a part of this networking event right here. I look forward to potentially connecting with many of you and I am also currently planning our community relations counsel luncheon. Invites will be going out as far as that goes, so I just look forward to meeting people in person. Thank you.

Ashley Jediny: Hampden County Sheriff’s Office
Hi everyone, Ashley Jediny, Hampden County Sheriff’s Office. I am the program coordinator for our post-overdose outreach team. I don’t have any direct updates but I did want to mention that All Inclusive Support Services is having their graduation and celebration of recovery tonight at 5pm at Cedar’s in Springfield. It is open to providers so if anyone wants to stop by please feel free to do so. I can share the flyer if anyone is interested. Thank you, Ed.

Anna Cruz: Wayfinders
Hello everyone, I am Anna Cruz, I work for Wayfinders in new Holyoke. I work at the community building and engagement department. We work to empower residents to advocate for community needs and we do that in several ways. Coming up we have a resident literature program and last year was the first time we did the program completely in Spanish and we are looking forward to doing it again this year. Last year 21 residents went through the program and successfully completed the five sessions. Also we are doing digital literacy training in Holyoke and Springfield. In Holyoke we did a basic one and an advanced one and we have one basic level coming up. That’s it, thank you.

Art Lobdell: Boy Scouts of America
Good afternoon, Art Lobdell here from Boy Scouts of America. Iris Sosa did a great presentation listing all the things that we have. Just want to underline that we do have our summer camp program that is rapidly filling up, an opportunity for boys and girls to be in week long overnight programs at our scout camps. Scout membership is a part of that, but there is still time to be able to create opportunities for youth from Holyoke to be able to be a member of the program and attend for week long summer camp. Lets get them in the outdoors. Thank you.

Angelimarie Mercado-Santana: Community Education Project
How are you, Angie from the Community Education Project. The only thing that I have to inform is we are starting the summer courses beginning July 5th all the way to the end of August. One will be in-person and the other one will be remotely. We continue to do the ESOL classes as well.

Abbie Germain: Western Mass Moms
Hey everybody, good afternoon, thanks Eddie. I just want to thank everybody who is here today, this is one of my favorite meetings just to hear about everything that is going on and what resources are out there and certainly the video at the beginning was very moving Eddie, so thank you for that. For those of you that are new, my name is Abbie and I do represent the Western Mass Moms program. If you’ve never heard of us, we provide services for mothers and caregivers in the community with an opportunity for a chance to address their mental health. We provide an 8 week stress management course. These classes are once a week for an hour and a half, we have in-person and zoom options available. If people choose in-person we can provide child care while they take the class. We have our services in English and Spanish in Springfield and Holyoke right now. We have a goal to enroll 1,000 moms in a 2 year span, we have been at it for about a year, so we have just about over a year left. So if you know any moms that might be interested in taking a class, it is part of a research study which means a couple of things. Number one, it is free to join, but not only is it free to join we actually pay our participants as they move through the program with gift card incentives. That has been great. In addition to the weekly gift cards we can also give a bus pass for those who might need it. Also, I just wanted to add that not only do we provide the stress management course, we also connect our participants with resources to help them achieve any goals that they might have, so it could be employment related or education related, perhaps they want to go back to school or get a job, or maybe they have a job but want a better job. Anyway, we can help them achieve those personal goals and certainly navigate the stress around those decisions. We know that being a mom is hard, it can be overwhelming and stressful, and this is really a chance for mothers to have a space where they can feel safe, supported, meet others facing similar challenges, and just realize that they are not alone. So if you know any mothers who might be interested, I will put my information in the chat. We’re trying to expand our social media, so I keep putting our Facebook link in the chat so feel free to check us out. If we are not already friends on there, go ahead and check that out. Again, thank you so much for this opportunity and I hope everybody enjoys the sunshine. Thanks Ed.

Edward Caisse: Hampden County Sherriff’s Office
Just in closing, I just have a couple things. We are always looking for volunteers to help us with the basketball league, if anybody or you know anybody within your organization that might be interested in being either a coach or just a chaperone on one of the nights or a scorekeeper, please get them connected to me. We appreciate that. That is it from me, thank you guys for coming today. Hopefully we see you again next month. Gloria, I don’t know if we want to let the cat out of bag about the in-person meeting on June 8th, so we want to mention that today?

Gloria Penagos: Holyoke Community College
Definitely, I know that we don’t have the whole group together here but yes, we contacted Ed and offered him to host this meeting at our Culinary Art Institute. That way we will take 15 minutes to present our program but also everyone will have the opportunity to have lunch that day. We are working on the details, we have to be really specific about food allergies and about many other things. That will be June 8th or around that date. This will be the chance to be in-person and enjoy some really good food.

Edward Caisse: Hampden County Sherriff’s Office
Thank you Gloria, we will connect soon and get you that information out to everyone. We will probably do a Google invitation so you guys can fill out a form where we can ask questions about food allergies and things like that. We will get that out to you guys in the next couple of weeks and that will be for the June meeting. Next month’s meeting will be May 11th so hopefully we will see you guys then. Have a great rest of the week and thank you so much for all that you do.


Abbie~Western Mass MOMS
Abbie~Western Mass MOMS
Abbie Germain~Western Mass MOMS~ 413.561.7413 call or text me... Or email me at love to connect. Thank you!

William Hadley
Holyoke District Court William.hadley@

Emmanuel Reyes- United Way - 413-302-3871

Nolan Teixeira (he/him), Eagle Eye Institute
Nolan Teixeira (he/him) | Eagle Eye Institute, Program Manager | We're currently recruiting for our summer internship programs (found here: as well as for an Executive Director, and a Program Coordinator.

Melissa McCarthy Women's Money Matters

Kate Pousont Scarborough, Food Bank Western MA,

Rondey Allen

Sandy Ward
We could use help for set up at the Library for “Mini Golf & Games” (esp. Friday April 28, 4pm-6pm) and for close-up (Sat April 29 ~ 3:30pm-5:30pm). For those two teams, I’m a co-leader. We’d WELCOME help. Sandy Ward, 413-250-8079 or For other aspects of the event, contact Nancy Kocsmiersky in the Library’s Development Office, 413-420-8109, THANKS!

Erica Vasquez HPA Care Coordinator. My mic and camera are not working unfortunately. Nothing new to update though.

Francheska Bermudez
413Cares is holding "Office Hours" for organizations and individuals to learn more about 413Cares and ask specific questions to help everyone use the platform to the fullest capacity. Register and drop in for the time needed.
April 25th, 12:00-1:30 pm -- Register here
May 17th, 1:30-3:00pm -- Register here
Our Healthy Air Network is looking to present at community organizations in Springfield and Holyoke to talk about the connection between air quality and its impact on health. We have over 60 air quality monitors across Greater Springfield and would like to share what we do, what and how we measure air quality, and what you can do to contribute to clean air.
To schedule a presentation or workshop please fill out this form or email me at

Corrine Ryan, CLA: direct 413-686-9018;; send clients/patients to intake: 855-252-5342 or apply online at Good to see you all!

Elena Woodworth
If anyone is interested in volunteering at our farm or joining our farmer training program, you can reach out to me at

Anna Cruz, Way Finders Community Building & Engagement department in Holyoke, MA. We work to empower residents and help them advocate for community improvements. Coming up in Holyoke a Spanish Resident leadership program and a digital literacy training -- basic level. Dates and times -- TBD

Elena Woodworth
I forgot to add-- we also accept volunteer groups that we can schedule to take place outside of regular volunteer hours. Often we can pair that volunteer work with a farm tour if there is interest in that :)

Old Business / New Business
Next Meeting is Thursday, May 11th (ZOOM).

Close Meeting 2:30pm
Contact Information:
Edward Caisse
Hampden County Sheriff’s Department
(413) 858-0225
Friend Request us on Facebook @ Shsni Holyoke

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