Authored by Rosa Nin
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The Importance of Preserving our History and Developing Affordable Housing

March 23rd, 2016 by Rosa Nin

Tuesday March 1st was an exciting day in Chelsea. The Neighborhood Developers (TND) hosted a ribbon cutting for their latest project, Lewis Latimer Place. The energy efficient project will house young at-risk parents and also provide support services through TND’s partnership with ROCA. The four sun-filled new homes were awaiting only the ceremony’s conclusion to receive the new families.  But they weren’t the only families benefiting from this project.

While walking through each new home, I envisioned all the hours invested into the development.  Many people took on this project not only to provide young at-risk families with quality housing, but also to recognize the contributions made to society by Lewis Latimer.  Historical sleuths Leo and Ron Robinson were on hand to recount their efforts to revive Mr. Latimer’s story, which starts with his parents, who were runaway slaves, settling in Chelsea.  The Neighborhood Developers installed a plaque commemorating his birth on the very grounds of these new homes, and will help to further legitimize the Robinson’s campaign to establish Lewis Latimer’s legacy as a scientist, poet, engineer, inventor and resident of Chelsea .

At the end of the day, when it was my turn  to pick up my kids  and go home they spotted the small flashlight I received from the event with “Lewis Latimer Place” emblazoned on it (Mr. Latimer helped invent some of the technology that is now used in lightbulbs).  They asked me what it was and why I had it.  Attending the ribbon cutting provided me a chance to talk to my children about slavery, determination and the importance of recognizing heroes from our past that may have been overlooked.  In simple terms, I spoke to them about freedom, and about Latimer’s work drawing up the first phone to which my seven-year-old daughter suggested “he should keep the phone and download games on it”.

Congratulations to The Neighborhood Developers for building housing for our community’s more vulnerable and thank you for helping preserve our nation’s history.

Just-A-Start Receives $200,000 Donation from JP Morgan Chase

September 4th, 2015 by Rosa Nin

Cambridge based Just-A-Start Corporation just announced having received a $200,000 grant from the JP Morgan Chase Foundation for their 23 year old Biomedical Careers Program. This nine-month, tuition free program prepares Cambridge area adults with low-incomes for Biomedical Careers.

The Top Three Reasons You Should Get Your Office Manager Out of the Office

May 26th, 2015 by Rosa Nin

MACDC held its first Office Manager Peer Group on May 13. It was an exciting meeting with all in attendance noting how wonderful it was to meet in person. During the course of the meeting, we realized that not everyone who works in an administrative role at a CDC has the opportunity to get out of the office and dedicate time to developing their skills and networking with their counterparts. It is critical that our field’s administrative staff have the same opportunities to develop new skills and connections as any other professional. This is why I have come up with the top three reasons you should encourage your office administrator to attend the office manager peer group.

  1. Professional Development: Because this is a working group, we identified critical areas for growth. Each peer group meeting will consist of a mini training. Over the course of the next year, we will be learning about new feature sets in Microsoft Office, with particular focus on Excel and PowerPoint, along with other tools and resources that will further strengthen and broaden the skills of each participant.
  2. Building Connections: Networking at annual meetings and other events is not always easy when there aren’t many people in your role in the room. Building your professional network is just as important for administrative staff as it is for executive leadership. It provides a critical resource when feedback or ideas are needed to solve a problem, in addition to developing and expanding an organization’s administrative role and further providing value to a nonprofit’s bottom line and mission.
  3. Improved Office Culture: Let’s face it, not every office is an easy place to work. Sometimes having certain issues heard by others who may have similar experiences can be a game changer. It can improve the way we manage the office by taking what was shared and applying it. Having a fresh perspective can also help detach oneself from a situation and gain a new perspective. It’s not uncommon for administrative staff to be a part-time office therapist, so finding better ways to deal with conflict and help bring staff together can dramatically increase the productivity of the organization.

Administrative support staff are critical members of an organization’s team that help connect all the moving parts, programs and departments. If administrative staff learn best practices, they spend less time on trial and error and are better able to save the organization time and money.  We help make all the various components of an organization better. 

Help us spread the word about this new peer group. Please share with your Office Manager or Admin Person.

Our next office manager peer group will be held on June 11, 9:30 AM, at Boston LISC.

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