In This Issue
Donuts with Delegates
Financial Literacy Class
First Time Homebuyer Class
SCC Calendar of Events
First Source Celebrates First Year
Union United Holds Rally for Community Benefits
13 Graduate from First Source Nanny Training. More Opportunities in March
Community Reacts to Zoning Overhaul at March 5 Hearing
2015 Leadership Development Institute Kicks-Off with Largest Enrollment To Date
Donuts with Delegates
Friday, Mar 20 at 9:00 AM

SCC members are invited to join us for an informal conversation with our legislators to discuss issues and priorities for 2015. 

Friday, March 20 at 9:00 AM
Somerville Community Corporation
377 Somerville Ave, Somerville

We will be serving Union Square Donuts(!) and coffee. Not to be missed!

If you'd like to come, please RSVP to Meridith at or 617-776-5931 x242
Financial Literacy Class
Next Class Begins April 1st

Our first financial education class for 2015 kicks off on April 1st! Over the course of four weeks, participants will gain important information and skills to help them navigate their financial
lives more successfully. Graduates will receive a $200 stipend to get them started on a successful financial path!

Dinner and childcare will be available.

Class will be held from 6:15-9:00 PM on April 1st, 2nd, 8th, 9th, 15th, 16th & 23rd.

Participants must:

  • Pre-register
  • Attend all 7 sessions AND 2 counseling sessions with SCC staff to successfully graduate
  • Live and/or work in Somerville;
  • Qualify under these income guidelines


Click here for the 2015 schedule


NEW morning session starts June 3rd!



For more information or to register, please contact Shannon Erb at 617-776-5931 x238 or

First Time Homebuyer Class
Next Class Begins April 21st



Sign up NOW for SCC's First-Time Homebuyer Class in April 2015! The four-session, 12-hour class will feature presentations by a real estate agent, a lender, a home inspector, a real estate attorney, and an insurance agent, in addition to SCC staff, and it will teach you everything you need to know before you start the process of buying your first home.


Upon completion of the course, participants receive a certificate that enables them to access products geared specifically towards first-time homebuyers, such as the ONE Mortgage.


Participants must:

  • Pre-register
  • Attend all 4 sessions


Click here for the 2015 schedule


NEW 2-Day Saturday session on June 6th & 13th! 



For more information or to register, please contact Shannon Erb at 617-776-5931 x238 or
Upcoming Events & Meetings
Our many groups and committees meet regularly and are open to newcomers! 

Click on the calendar below to learn more about meetings and events coming up: 
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Join Our Mailing List! 


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From rallies and hearings to milestones and donuts, SCC continues to keep active this month working with community members to engage our local politicians and stakeholders, participate in the dialogue on hard-hitting issues, and strategically lead actions to voice our collective concerns and opinions. We do this all with one vision in mind:  to keep Somerville diverse and affordable for everyone. And donuts, you ask?... well, everyone's got to eat!

Read on to learn about our latest activities and how you can get involved with SCC and within the greater Somerville community.
From all of us at SCC, thank you for your support 
First Source Celebrates First Year

This month, the Somerville First Source Jobs Initiative celebrates one year of connecting local job seekers with local jobs. It's a clear-cut mission, but one that takes many hands, minds and partners to make a reality.


Stemming from SCC's Jobs for Somerville  organizing work, and in partnership with the City of Somerville and The Career Place, SCC launched First Source in March 2014 to provide soft-skill workshops and individual case management to best match Somerville job seekers to local employers. With an emphasis on residents facing barriers to employment, First Source quickly expanded its vision, participation and impact throughout the year, illustrating a great need for support services like this in Somerville.


Let's take a look at some of the First Source highlights:


  • Hosted 48 soft-skills workshops on such things as financial education and  interviewing tips, reaching 125 individuals and enrolling 256 to the talent bank;
  • Enrolled 154 people into talent bank through active intakes, identifying more than twice as many people than predicted actively seeking employment;
  • Performed case management with over 130 people, assisting on a individual basis with resume preparation and mapping out a goals to secure ideal employment;
  • Helped 61 people find job placements in Somerville;
  • Registered 77 employers to support local hire;
  • Held 2 Job Fairs, attracting 118 job seekers;
  • Supported 53 youth ages 18-24 under the new Pocket Change with job training and short and long-term employment and 20 of them obtained employment
It truly is a time to celebrate 
While our vision for First Source and its impact on the Somerville community continues to grow into its second year, so does its funding. We thank the City of Somerville for its continued support for this program which will benefit so many residents.
For more information on First Source, contact Jorge Col�n 617-776-5931 x232 or



Union United Holds Rally for Community Benefits  

With a crowd of over 45 members and supporters, Union United held a successful rally and press conference on March 11th to say loud and clear: this community deserves better!


We heard from Union Square business owners Angelica Benatti and Pokye Casserly and local youth Bukhari Brown on the importance of addressing community needs and having development without displacement. We shared that we want to meet with the mayor to discuss our priorities and negotiate a community benefits agreement (CBA) with Union Square Station Associates (US2) that includes the whole redevelopment area.


Last week's Somerville Journal editorial asked Mayor Joe Curtatone to bring Union United to the table and help negotiate a CBA. We also had a strong presence during the Somerville by Design meetings this week to share our ideas, concerns, and bring the conversation back to a community-led CBA.



Union United Members Selected for Civic Advisory Committee 

Union United is proud to have four coalition members on the Union Square CAC, a City-appointed community advisory committee. Congratulations to 

  • Angelica Benatti, Master Printing
  • Pokye Casserly, New Reliable Market;
  • Fr. Richard Curran, St. Joseph's Church and Somerville Tri-Parish Community; 
  • Chris Mancini,  Groundwork Somerville

Union United is stronger than ever. We have over 100 members, 15 community groups, 14 small businesses, religious congregations, immigrant groups, and labor unions all making waves in this city and beyond! 


To find out more about Union United and this campaign, contact Mashael at or 617-776-5931 x228.

13 Graduate from First Source Nanny Training 

More First Source Workshops to Closeout Month

To cap off its first year, First Source hosted its first-ever Nanny Training last month. Thirteen individuals completed an intensive three-day training including Infant and Child First Aid and CPR certification, and workshops on Early Childhood Education & Behavior Management.


Between donations of time, space and expertise, we extend a big thanks to the many organizations and individuals who made this training possible:

  • Lydia Edwards, Campaign Director, Greater Boston Legal Services;
  • Cheryl McNulty, Preschool Director, Somerville YMCA
  • CPR Boston
  • Marlene Juarez & Julia Beebe, MATAHARI
  • Vanessa Valle & Luci Morris, First Source Volunteers
  • Nomi Davidson, Somerville Family Learning Collaborative

We are extremely proud of all of our participants who came engaged and ready to take this step toward their next job. SCC's First Source staff will be here to support them as they use their new found skills to gain employment, or transition to better jobs.



Upcoming First Source Opportunities for March


Job Seekers Support Group

March 20th, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Somerville Community Corporation, 337 Somerville Ave, Somerville

The Job Seekers Support Group is a space for job seekers to share their experiences in the job search process and networking with other job seekers. This will also be a time for non-native English speakers to practice their language skills in a safe and comfortable environment. This is a drop in event, no registration required.


Interviewing Skills Workshop

March 24th, 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM

Somerville Community Corporation, 337 Somerville Ave, Somerville

Do you have a hard time getting ready for a job interview?  It's difficult for you to answer the interview questions with confidence and assertiveness? The workshops offered by a professional in career development will help you to feel more prepared. Registration required.


Recruitment Session with Chipotle

March 26th, 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM

La Quinta Inn, 23 Cummings St, Somerville

The First Source Jobs Program partnered with Chipotle to host a recruitment session for First Source Participants and the general public. No registration required.



To register or for more information about about any of these opportunities, please 
contact Jorge Col�n 617-776-5931 x232 or

Community Reacts to Zoning Overhaul at March 5 Hearing

On March 5th, the City presented its newly drafted zoning code to a group of around 50 community stakeholders who were eager to voice their opinions, questions and participate in a dialogue before the major overhaul is etched in stone. SCC's staff and members, including a vocal representation from the Affordable Housing Organizing Committee (AHOC), were a large slice of the audience. The central message: new zoning should enable new development only if that development uplifts the current community.


Credit: City of Somerville  


AHOC has played an active role over the past year thinking strategically through some of the challenges that Somerville faces in regards to affordability. This comes at a time when displacement has progressed from a concern to a reality, given the buzz around Union Square redevelopment and the Green Line that will soon be at our doorsteps. While the group commends the City for including strong affordable housing provisions, there is still more that can be done, and AHOC has laid out clear priorities for the City to consider. Such considerations include ensuring that development fees don't make inclusionary units unaffordable, that preference for Somerville residents should include those recently displaced, and that 20% inclusionary zoning should be applied to any new development across the entire city.


The City claims that it plans to address growth in a way that "reflects the community's values" and "protects lower income residents and small business." AHOC is hopeful its collective voice and vision has been heard and considered to truly meet this goal.


Help seize the moment and use zoning to increase affordable housing in Somerville. Share your comments with the City until March 27th!



To join this conversation or find out more about AHOC, contact Ren� Mardones at 617-776-5931 x226 or

2015 Leadership Development Institute 

Kicks-Off with Largest Enrollment To Date


The 2015 Leadership Development Institute (LDI), SCC's 8th Annual, kicked off on Saturday, March 14th. We had an overwhelming response this year -- with close to 30 people enrolled, this makes it our largest group of budding leaders ever!

As in previous years, LDI provides interpretation to participants in four languages, making this opportunity available to new immigrants or those who speak English as a second language. SCC values accessibility - to reach as many people as possible to organizing and empowering residents to identify paths to connect in the local struggle for social justice. 



Our first session focused on leadership, while our upcoming session will highlight the importance of building relationships. LDI will continue for the next three Saturdays.


To learn more about LDI, contact Ren� Mardones at 617-776-5931 x226 or

As always, we appreciate feedback.  Be sure to join us on Facebook & Twitter for the most current info on what we're up to and how to get involved. We look forward to seeing and hearing from you soon! 

Daniel LeBlanc
Somerville Community Corporation