For the youngsters enrolled in the YWCA’s after-school program at Roosevelt School, Wednesday’s are no longer seen as “hump day”, and Friday’s are anticipated for a very different reason. On these days, books and chalkboards are momentarily switched out for games and folktales. Eshu Bumpus is a world-renown storyteller and independent entertainment professional. A lover of music, art and teaching young people, Eshu has found a way to combine all three into a rewarding, exciting and educational experience for the elementary and middle school students at Roosevelt.
As the artist-in-residence, Eshu introduces African, African-American and World folktales to the students through story games, inclusive story telling, and both individual and group writing workshops. Over the next few months, Eshu has many activities planned, each of which will further develop oral language and written literacy skills, as well as increase their overall confidence.
Eshu and the students are currently working on the production of their very own personalized coloring books. The younger students will write stories with the guidance of Eshu and the older students will illustrate. The final product will be coloring books for the individual children to have and feel connected to artistically. On a larger scale, Eshu has asked the students to create self-portraits, which he will animate, and accompany with recordings of the children describing their plans to contribute to society when they grow up. These same recordings will also be developed into a musical song produced by Eshu.
The finalized music product and coloring books will be premiered and distributed to all of the students as part of a potluck event. This is a great way for the children to see all their hard work pay off and be proud of everything they’ve accomplished.
This project is made possible with a Quality Enhancements in After-School and Out-of-School Time (ASOST-Q) grant through the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
The American Association of University Women (AAUW) awarded a 2015–2016 Community Action Grant to Girls Inc. of Worcester. The funded program, Girls Promoting Safety (GPS), is a strength-based violence prevention education program for middle school girls. Implemented in collaboration with the YWCA Central Massachusetts, GPS uses evidence-based curricula to teach girls the resiliency skills needed to avoid being victims of violence and promote healthy relationships.
The 130th Annual Meeting was held on June 25, 2015, at the Hanover Insurance building in Worcester.
Featured speakers were Etel Cappachione and Lillie Williams. Executive Director Linda Caviaioli and Board President Linda Looft gave a presentation about the new YWCA strategic plan.
Etel spoke about the YWCA influence on her personal growth as a woman, mother, leader and social justice activist. She spoke of the significant impact that the YWCA demonstrates in the community, changing the lives of women and girls, by pushing boundaries in the fight to eliminate racism and empower women.
Lillie gave a heartfelt speech about her journey through homelessness and becoming a survivor of domestic violence. Lillie proudly spoke of her accomplishments, including her recent college graduation, and her peer counseling career at a local non-profit agency.
The YWCA board and senior staff recently underwent a comprehensive strategic planning process to plan for the organization’s future. As part of the process a “Theory of Change” was developed which outlines the organization’s intent for community impact, and expected outcomes. The Theory of Change includes programmatic directions, organization development/racial justice directions, and physical plant changes.
Also members elected eight individuals(*) to serve a three year term on the Board of Directors. Additionally, officers of the Board and corporators were elected.
Board of Directors
Linda Looft, President
Micki Davis, Vice President, President-elect
Joyce Augustus, Vice President Elect
Mary Dean, Treasurer
Deborah Gavron-Ravenelle, Assistant Treasurer
Margarete Arndt, Clerk
Christienne Bik, Assistant Clerk
Linda Cavaioli, Ex-Officio
Sheila King Goodwin
Joyce McNickles, Ed.D.
Judith Ockene, PhD, M. Ed, M.A.
Yuisa Perez Chionchio*
Jane Lochrie, M.D.
The YWCA, through its many community programs, has gained recognition in being a community support organization. Find out what the news and media outlets are saying about us.