A new pilot program debuted at the Condon Community Center last Wednesday, the 22nd – “Condon Connects”. BPD Officer Michelle Maffeo from Bureau of Community Engagement lead the presentation encouraging families living with a disability to connect with: each other, many of the high-lighted resources, and, the Condon Community Center
Last Wednesday evening, May 22, South Boston’s Condon Community Center was the site of an in-depth presentation of a newly conceived pilot program – “Condon Connects”. The Administrative Coordinator of the South Boston Center is Joseph Curran; the presentation at the Condon was arranged by Barbara Kelly, who is the Condon Community Center’s Program Supervisor, and Debra Flaherty, Condon Staff Assistant. This was the very first presentation of the pilot program, which has been deemed “Condon Connects”.
The individual who made the presentation was Boston Police Department (BPD) Officer Michelle Maffeo. She is a member of the BPD’s Bureau of Community Engagement in Charlestown, supervised by BPD Sergeant Gino Provenzano. The Boston Medical Center (BMC), Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS), and the Federation for Children with Special Needs graciously sent representatives to provide information and add to the narrative for parents and caregivers.
Officer Maffeo gave an energetic, enthusiastic, and well-informed presentation to those who attended the May 22 meeting at the Condon Community Center. One program she introduced was “North Star”. Maffeo explained that this program is for people who tend to wander off – one of the autistic behaviors certain children have, but this application can also be applied to older family members with Alzheimer’s and Dementia. It is entitled “North Star Personal Alert Program”, and offers a confidential personal enrollment feature (with a photo) that helps police act upon a report that someone is missing. North Star is a free program for resident Bostonians; contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The real objective of this pilot program is to establish the Condon Community Center as a “resource center” for families with disabilities, and to work collaboratively to develop adaptive programming that stresses fun and inclusion. Plans are being made right now for a Condon Community Center First Responders Safety and Fun Day, which will entertain children while showing them the importance of trusting first responders – representatives from the Boston Police, Boston Fire Department, and EMS will be in attendance. Watch for it sometime in July. Condon Program Supervisor Barbara Kelly says, “It is paramount that kids identify First Responders as trusted figures before a true emergency” – Well said!
Officer Maffeo contacted the Condon Community Center to arrange this first pilot program presentation, which was really the kickoff for the program “Condon Connects”. Please stay tuned for future gatherings, we want input from parents, grandparents and caregivers as we work to develop: special events, adaptive sports and aquatic programs, and future resource fairs. The staff at the Condon Community Center is dedicated to increasing programming to include all members of our neighborhood.
It’s nearly summertime (finally). Plan to get involved with “Condon Connects” and the BPD’s Bureau of Community Engagement for future events.